Great Stirrup Cay In Bahamas

We had a wonderful time at Great Stirrup Cay, which is a private, 250-acre island in Bahamas owned by Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL).

The cay has crystal clear water and soft white sand beaches. Swim, snorkel, sunbathe; there’s a mini Straw Market for shopping; midday beach-side BBQ for lunch; Hippo water slide: world’s largest inflatable water slide – 40 feet high, 175 feet long.

Lucayan Indians first inhabited the island, followed by the Spanish explorers, and the British. Slave traders were active in the 19th century. The cay was used during the American Civil War; then as an American base to fight German submarines active in the Caribbean during World War II. And before NCL bought the island from an oil company, the US Air Force used it as a satellite tracking station.

Swim or snorkel beside a school of tropical fish; or get a photo taken with a waiter-in-water.

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Beach chairs outdo the blue of the sky.204

A lifeguard’s best rock-seat

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New arrivals

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Approaching the cay

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Coconut palm – the common treeaa

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Soft white sand beaches

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The mini Straw Market

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Calm, ocean breeze

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Hippo Water Slide

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Dusk’s approaching the island224

Reflections

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In Central Park last year, I observed the bride’s costume and the groom’s coziness.

So many cameras, including mine, focused on them. The couple had their cameraman click their pictures. None – it was possible – had time for reflection.

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Later, the couple – in some uncertain corner of their subconscious – were reflecting, perhaps: where they were, when this began, and how this would end.

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But, they possibly refrained from fretting about past or worrying about future. They possibly accepted the reflections of the present.

 

What’s New York City without them

There are things without which this city cannot survive: NYPD, FDNY, yellow cab, street vendors, to name a few. And there are things with which the city continues to thrive: street performers, among others.

A revisit:

New York City Police Department:  There’s a fine line between their alertness and friendliness.174996_10151289560360625_112948555_o

Fire Department of the city of New York: All of us know what their contribution has been (before, on, after 9/11). Don’t (therefore) hate the sound their trucks make.329351_10150392331585625_996432770_o

Blue Boat: I see one of these every day from my apartment. Their reach is far and wide.337459_10150392342150625_1065411757_o

Yellow Cab: Ubiquitous, and the need of the minute.413176_10151289590500625_1986082458_o

School Bus: Safe and sound, and in shape.171941_10151289581240625_125984412_o

United States Postal Service: They do deliver.617041_10151289590285625_68339071_o

Deli: Coffee, croissant, muffin, and more.339788_10151289592250625_252827647_o

Street Food: Devour it.53854_10151289596590625_64169138_o

Laborers: The most ignored are the most hardworking.665054_10151316757600625_1890988838_o

Citi Bikes: Ride them.1043854_10151770789410625_1175918212_n

Horse carriage ride: Harsh?665344_10151316762490625_1720755098_o

Solo ride is light ride622616_10151316764330625_1317395301_o

Scare the brave201156_10151316768525625_2053913873_o

Hug the loving394091_10150620600735625_227385326_n

Street Performers: Talented, and though they do this for money, they won’t ask you for a cent.

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My Statue Of Liberty Moment In Santo Domingo

Was when I met Montesinos.

This 150-foot stone and bronze statue of Fray Antón de Montesinos, donated by the Mexican government, is half the size of Statue of Liberty (305 feet). It faces the Caribbean sea on Santo Domingo Harbor.

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Montesinosa was a Dominican priest who protested the way the Spanish treated the New World native Indians, and in a famous sermon in 1511, he courageously spoke against this ill-treatment.

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His sermon triggered a fierce debate over the natives’ rights and their identity.

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He died around 1545.

 

From Resilience Of Ground Zero To Reality Of 9/11 Memorial

We visited the 9/11 Memorial soon after it opened to public on Sep 12, 2011. These pictures were taken then.

I’d like to quote what Barrack Obama, President of the USA, said on the occasion:

When people visit the 9/11 memorials in the future, they will know that nothing can break the will of a truly United States of America. They will be reminded that we are not perfect, but our democracy is durable, and that democracy — reflecting, as it does, the imperfections of man — also gives us the opportunity to perfect our union. That is what we honor on days of national commemoration — those aspects of the American experience that are enduring, and the determination to move forward as one people.

The South PoolIMG_3870

January 2012 115

The North PoolJanuary 2012 063

January 2012 026

One of the WTC buildingsIMG_3865

Survivor TreeJanuary 2012 087

Transportation HubJanuary 2012 099

January 2012 108

HeroismJanuary 2012 095

The ParkJanuary 2012 106

January 2012 110

They Say:

You touch the feet of Theodore Dwight Woolsey, and you’ll study at Yale.

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Did I touch his feet when I toured Yale University? Yes

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Could I study at Yale? No

Grab the bull by its balls, and it’ll bring you financial good luck.

Did I grab the balls? Yes, the cold bronze

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Did the grabbing help? No

Lastly, on a Halloween night:

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Do I need that mask to be called a devil? No

So I am a devil? Yes

Do I hate myself? Not yet

Happy Ending or Nappy Ending? Happy ending, hopefully.

Sir Snow, Spare Us The Repetition

First, it was Nor’easter at night, then Nor’easter next morning, followed by Polar Vortex and Arctic Blast, and today, there was another snowstorm.

Feel free to sitDSCN1368

Branch-nowedDSCN1405

Any time’s family timeDSCN1388

Just a click to your dreamDSCN1406

Dive in

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Anytime, anywhereDSCN1371

Is somebody in there?DSCN1350

Took a turn for the better?DSCN1378

Where dreams are made ofDSCN1397

Bed to be tucked inDSCN1403

When top doesn’t share the burdenDSCN1419

Is there another word for beauty?DSCN1410

Nap, ladyDSCN1426

Postcard view from the apartmentDSCN1446

Railings never looked more gorgeousIMG_6382

Who cares!DSCN1425

Mayflower II In Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, we experienced the mystery of Mayflower.

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Mayflower II is the replica of the 17th century ship that transported pilgrims to the New World. The replica traveled from Plymouth, England to Plymouth, Massachusetts in the 1950s. The project was meant to commemorate the United States-United Kingdom cooperation during World War II.

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My Undying Love For Bridges

Bridges connect lands, shine after rain, and wink when there’s sun on steel.

I’m very familiar with these bridges — they get my undivided attention.

Verrazano-Narrows Bridge connects Staten Island and Brooklyn. Longest suspension bridge span in the US. 11th longest in the world.29511_441632925624_6890669_n

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George Washington Bridge connects Manhattan and New Jersey. World’s busiest motor vehicle bridge, carries 102 million vehicles every year.Manhattan.20mile walk.pregnancy 218

Manhattan.20mile walk.pregnancy 189

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Manhattan.20mile walk.pregnancy 209

Brooklyn Bridge connects Manhattan and Brooklyn.  Love locks and the everlasting love.

ggggg

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yyyyy

jjjjjj

CN Tower In Toronto

It was a day of fun at CN Tower. The view from the Observation Deck was spectacular.

Your Majesty!

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One of the tallest freestanding structures in the world740301_10151422660890625_871648377_o

In a high-speed glass-fronted elevator. Racing upwards at 22 kilometers per hour.343434

This glass floor (1122 feet up) can withstand the weight of 14 large hippos.741157_10151422661485625_1799800368_o

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View from the Observation Deck (116th floor). Billy Bishop city airport (center-right).736008_10151422662130625_1191204972_o

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The night view

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