The plans for Tuesday, April 8th, were to meet Roni, her husband Andy and two of their three sons: Joe and Nathan. Now I don't mind divulging any information about this family because they are very very Facebook conscious. They post so much about their lives. Roni keeps telling me to read her Facebook page to know what is happening in her life. I'm not a Facebook fanatic so Roni complains about informing me the old fashioned way when I speak to her during our monthly telephone calls.
Any way, the plans were to meet by the ferry in Battery Park. This ferry would take us to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Luckily, we ran into each other easily and boarded the ferry. We found seats on the top of the boat; however, people crowded on and stood at the sides so we couldn't see much. We regretted our decision to sit. However, on the way home, the ferry was basically empty and we moved all over the ferry easily.
Our first stop was the Statue of Liberty. Having to go through what is almost worse than airport security, we made it onto the Statue's property. Along with everyone else, we marched up 240 stairs (well Roni and I took the elevator up but walked down) to reach that area jutting out near the bottom of that picture above. It was very cramped and difficult to move around with all the people. We were able to walk around the circumference but the view was not much better from the ground. We were all surprised to realize how small is the Statue of Liberty.
After lunch at a large cafeteria, Roni and I parted with her husband and sons who took the ferry back to the City; whereas, Roni and I continued on the Ellis Island. The visit to the Island involves travelling through three large rooms. In the first room, you can receive an audio tour handset which allowed you to hear the first hand stories of people who have passed through this incredible building. You also received a detailed history of Ellis Island.
The Registry Room was magnificent with its beautiful hardwood flooring and high vaulted ceilings made a small bricks. The stories about families who had been processed by officials in this large room was very interesting. The history here is long and enduring. The difficulties existing in this place was truly incredible. Some people were required to complete so much just to enter the USA. Many people were denied entry because of disease and illness.
After a coffee at Starbucks near Battery Park, Roni and I parted ways. The subway she required to return to her hotel was at a different entrance where I had to go to get the subway back to Kathy's place. It was great as always to see her and spend some time with her. Unfortunately, it was short. I look forward to visiting her in England.
As soon as I receive the CDs of my pictures, I will continue the blog and provide more photos of the rest of my trip.