I Found My Love in Portofino…

DSCN1558Well, it’s been a while since I last posted but I’m back with some lovely pictures of my holiday so I hope you’ll forgive me fairly quickly 🙂 As you may have seen from my Facebook page, I recently went on a short break with my husband to Portofino in Italy, which is a fishing village on the Italian Riviera coastline just south-east of Genoa. It is famous for its picturesque harbour and the wonderful seafood available in its restaurants, and perhaps a little infamous for its celebrity visitors who arrive in their luxury yachts.

DSCN1471As it is a pedestrian village, we decided to forego the hire car and to travel by public transport from Genoa airport instead. This involved a bus, a train and finally, another bus into the village itself. This sounds much simpler than it actually was! We had to negotiate the machines at Genoa train station for our journey to Santa Margherita Ligure by way of Rapallo first of all. Once we’d done that, we made our way to Rapallo, experiencing a short delay on the journey but arriving safely at the other end. Unfortunately, the short delay meant that we missed our connection and we finally worked out that the next train wouldn’t be for another hour because it was Sunday.

In true British form, we huffed and puffed, and analysed every aspect of what had happened and then suddenly, one of us said, ‘It really doesn’t matter, does it? We’re not in a hurry. We’ll get there when we do.’ And with that profound declaration, our shoulders relaxed and we went with the flow as everyone else on the train platform was doing. We were amazed to hear such a variety of accents in the train station: Americans, other British travellers, local Italians and everything in between. When we reached Santa Margherita, we had just missed the ferry we were planning to take (this is Italy!)  but there was a bus waiting to take us on the coastal ride of our lives and we hopped on and went with it arriving only a few minutes later than we had first planned.

DSCN1446Having checked into our lovely hotel, we were then overwhelmed by beautiful views and fantastic restaurants at every turn for the next few days to our complete and utter delight. It was magical and we fell in love with it – just like the song. You can listen to and watch Andrea Bocelli singing his version of the famous song here. What? You didn’t know there was a song?! 😉 And then on our way back on the boat from Santa Margherita on our last day, we were treated to another unexpected musical delight.

As we were waiting to board the ferry for our return trip to Portofino, we had heard someone playing an accordion but we couldn’t see where they were and then again, we wondered if we had imagined it! Then, in the middle of our trip back, sat on the upper deck, a man stood up…with an accordion. He started to play and everyone around started to sing but not in Italian, or in English but in Polish! We had no idea that was the language at first but the man next to us pointed to one of his group who had the words to the song on a sheet in her hands and when we looked over her shoulder, we could see it was an eastern European language and our neighbour proudly told us how he and his group had learnt the words in Polish to the famous song, ‘I Found My Love in Portofino.’ Well, to say we were gobsmacked is an understatement. It was so lovely to see such happy people, enjoying themselves by singing their hearts out and they didn’t just sing the one number, they carried on singing traditional Polish songs as well. We could only imagine how wonderful it must have been to hear the singing from the harbour in Portofino. These clips are all very short and are well worth watching!

                             

They say that travel is good for the soul and I firmly believe that. This trip was inspirational in many ways and I’m pretty sure that Portofino, or somewhere like it, will make an appearance in one of my books one day 😉

Thanks for reading as always. Do leave me a message in the comments about the places you have been, at home or abroad, that you have found inspirational.

A Summer of Reflections

DSCN0738As you may remember, I finished the first draft of my second book, Where My Heart Belongs at the end of July and I’m patiently waiting for the report on it to come back from the RNA (Romantic Novelists’ Association). Since then, I’ve been having a break from all things writerly, giving me some time to reflect on what I hope to achieve during the next few months. More on that soon but for this post, I want to tell you about the research I did whilst on my holidays to Alsace this summer.

We were staying just outside Colmar, where my main character, Fran is originally from. We hadn’t been there for nearly twenty years but it was lovely on our first evening to find it pretty much the same.

 

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The area around this canal is known as Petite Venise and is so picturesque, especially on a lovely sunny evening. The bridges are always full of people taking photos of the Hotel Romantik and there are lots of lovely restaurants to choose from around the canal and the surrounding old town.

 

 

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My character, Fran, hardly visits the town at all, except to arrive and depart from the station and it got me thinking about including it in more detail somehow so I’m going to give that a bit of thought.

 

 

DSCN0791The next day, we visited the Jardin des Papillons which features in my book. According to my husband, we visited this Butterfly Garden the last time we were in Alsace too but I can’t remember it! It’s quite a bit smaller than I was thinking from the research I’d done beforehand and so I can’t imagine Fran and her friends staying there all day after all.

 

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There was a lot to do in the local area though so
perhaps she’ll go on to the Montagne des Singes, which we visited the following day.

 

 

 

 

AfteDSCN0863r the Butterfly Garden, we went to visit the fortified medieval church at Hunawihr which you may have seen in some of my pictures on my Facebook Author page before I left. This is the village where my character, Fran bumps into her former lover, Didier at the wedding of mutual friends. It is such a beautiful church and village that I feel tempted to move the action there, away from the Strasbourg area, where it’s set at the moment. I’m giving lots of thought to this while the manuscript is away. There is so much history here as well, which I know I could use to add depth to my story.

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The church was just as beautiful on the inside and as we were alone, I took a quick photo to remind me for the future. What a lovely place to get married!

 

 

 

 

 

DSCN1011We did spend a wonderful day in Strasbourg later in the week, renewing our memories of our time spent there nearly twenty years ago. We ate a wonderful lunch sat next to the canal, enjoying Tarte Flambée, just as Fran does when she goes home.

 

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Of course, we washed it down with a lovely glass of wine…or two 🙂 If you fancy having a go at making this yourself, I found a good recipe here.

 

 

 

DSCN1101We went back to the Château de Haut-Koenigsbourg for another of our days out. This is a medieval castle which you can see from all around the Colmar area because it is haut in every sense of the word. The castle was built in the 12th century and occupied a strategic position overseeing various trade routes until the end of the Thirty Years’ War in 1648 when it was reduced to ruins by the Swedes and then abandoned. It wasn’t until 1899 that Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany decided to rebuild it to celebrate its return to German ownership and to turn it into a museum. It has been beautifully restored and is a wonderful place to visit. Sadly, the castle doesn’t feature in my book but I don’t need any excuse to visit a good castle!

 

The final day of our holiday was spent indulging my husband as it was his big birthday while we were away (you may remember I spent mine in Nashville earlier in the year!) This meant that we spent most of the day eating and drinking…so no change there!

I hope you’ve all enjoyed a wonderful summer, with at least some good weather wherever you are. Next week, please look out for my ‘Author Spotlight’ feature on indie author, Sam Russell and as always, if you have any comments for me, please do leave me a message below.

 

All photos © Copyright, Julie Stock.

Our Holiday Adventure From Here to Nashville (part two) and a Week of Book Fairs!

This week, I promised to tell you about the other things we did on our holiday that I didn’t refer to in my book but which were all amazing and well worth doing if you’re ever in Tennessee.

The first thing I wDSCN0149anted to mention was The Johnny Cash Museum in Nashville. This was my favourite museum of all the ones we visited, with The Ryman and The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum coming a close second. First of all, the café and shop were quite small and clearly not the main focus of your visit (this was to prove very important when we went to Graceland a few days later). This meant that the museum took up all the room and rightly so. There were so many fantastic exhibits, ranging from Johnny’s birth certificate to a piece of wall from his house!

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There were lots of music items too, like his guitar and his boots, along with other outfits he’d worn. There was a whole room given over to his platinum and gold records and beyond that, an exhibition devoted to Sun Records where he started out. One of our favourite things was a stand where you could listen to one of his songs in all its different formats – a 78, then a 33, then a 45 record, a cassette, a CD and finally, an MP3 version. It was great listening to the difference in ‘hiss’ on the different formats. Strangely, the 78 record seemed to offer the best quality.

If you like Johnny Cash, you will love the museum of course but even if you don’t know his music much at all, you will come out eager to go and find one of his albums and listen to it again and again. My older daughter felt just like this and it was great to see how much she enjoyed it.

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We did so many musical things while we were in Nashville, going to The Bluebird Café, singing with a Live Band at The Hard Rock Café’s weekly karaoke (there are videos but you’ll have to pay me a lot of money to let you see mine!), listening to some Honky Tonk music at Robert’s Western World and we ended our week with a trip to The Grand Ole Opry House for their Saturday show. The Grand Ole Opry started out as a one-hour radio show on WSM dedicated to country music and has had various homes around the Nashville area. It is now housed in a building east of downtown Nashville near the Opry Mills shopping mall and the show we went to lasted for over two hours. It’s a curious blend of traditional and contemporary country music, interspersed with adverts from their sponsors and some quirky acts like square dancers! It was a bit cheesy at times but we spent a lot of time laughing along with the rest of the audience. It is a part of Nashville’s history and we loved it. One of the best moments for me of course, was seeing Charles Esten who plays the character Deacon in the ABC TV series, ‘Nashville.’ He was the inspiration for my character, Jackson, and so it was fantastic to see him perform on stage.

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A week after arriving in Nashville, we set off on our first road trip of sorts, travelling three hours west to Memphis. People had joked with us when we told them we were going there next about how it is one of the most dangerous cities in the US and we’d need some luck to make it out again safe and sound. We then made the mistake of looking it up on the internet so that by the time we did arrive, we were all feeling a bit tense about it. I’d booked a hotel near Graceland so that we could get there easily and I tell you, they did a fantastic job with their photos on the site. We had an interstate on one side and a cement factory on the other but curiously, neither of those details is included in the sales blurb on the booking site 😉 Here’s a pic of the view from our window for you to get the idea.

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Our room was pleasant enough though and everyone was really friendly so yes, it was functional but it served its purpose for two nights. We ventured into Memphis the first night to eat out and apart from a very persistent but friendly panhandler, we survived! It was very similar to other cities we’ve been in the UK and we adapted fairly quickly. It was very different from the atmosphere in Nashville, a bit more edgy I guess but I think that was to be expected.

 

So the next day, we went to Graceland which was the main point of the trip to Memphis and somewhere I’ve always wanted to go. It was a real operation, starting with the price! We then had to wait for a shuttle bus to take our tour group across the road (!) and while we waited in line, we all had to have our photos taken in case we wanted to spend $40 later on a souvenir photo pack. We were given iPad audio tours and eventually made it across the road to the home of Elvis Presley. We had no time to take a photo outside before being hurried inside to start the tour of the mansion. It made me sad to see the big tourist operation that this visit has become. I enjoyed the visit in that I liked hearing the story behind the house and the life Elvis had lived inside it but I didn’t like being herded along with no time to appreciate the finer aspects at my leisure. When we went back across the road, every exhibit we went in brought us out into another shop as well. Apparently, in 2011, Elvis was one of the top three grossing celebrities who have passed away which for me, says it all. I wouldn’t have missed the experience but I think it could have been so much better.

And so we reached our last night and we wanted to do something really special so we saw that there was a live band on at BB King’s Blues Bar on Beale Street so off we went. We had a great table, right next to another British couple (shut up!) and we sang along to a whole host of our favourite soul songs. It was such a great way to finish our holiday and a memorable way too. I can’t recommend this trip highly enough as I hope you can tell 🙂

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WP_20150414_001The week or so since we’ve been back has been crazy for me so I wanted to share the highlights with you. Firstly, I went to the London Book Fair on Tuesday. It was a great, if exhausting day and I attended lots of useful seminars and met up with some other lovely authors.

 

I was just about recovering from this by Friday when I attended the Indie Author Book Fair organised by the Alliance of Independent Authors as part of Indie Recon 2015. Along with about 60 other indie authors, I had a stand at Foyles Bookshop in the Charing Cross Road in Central London. It was a wonderful occasion and really busy, giving us all the chance to engage with readers face-to-face and to draw strength from each other. I was scared to death beforehand but I’m so glad I went and once it started, I just got talking and then I was fine! So here’s a couple of photos of me and my stall.

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As a result of my sale last week and the great success of the Indie Author Fair, I have had a good number of sales this week and today, I found out that this had all pushed me into the the Amazon Top 100 Bestsellers’ List for Romance Literary Fiction. I might have only been there briefly but for me, it was the crowning glory to a wonderful couple of weeks 🙂 Wishing you all a great week and thanks for reading, as always.

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Our Holiday Adventure From Here to Nashville (part one)

And so it’s back to life and reality now that our big holiday adventure is over. Oh, but what an adventure it was 🙂 I checked out all the places I referred to in my book and I’m pleased to say that I think I did a good job. For today’s post, I’m going to share those places with you and to tell you some of what we got up to while we were there.

The Journey From Here to Nashville

DSCN0039The first photo I took was at Heathrow where I was pleased to see a branch of Tiffany’s. I spent quite a few minutes with my daughters looking at all the beautiful jewellery there but didn’t find the exact pieces that Jackson buys for Rachel in the book. It didn’t matter though, it was just good to be in there 🙂

 

 

We were slightly delayed on the journey from Heathrow to Chicago and then sat on the tarmac when we got there, watching the window for our connecting flight to Nashville get smaller and smaller. We decided to go with the flow though and not let it bother us too much. We knew there were flights later that evening so we were sure it would all be okay. Some very kind people fast-tracked us through immigration and security but by the time we’d picked up our bags again, we thought we had definitely missed our connecting flight. Then, just as our bags were being retagged, we were told that our flight had been held for us and so we ran all the way to meet it and finally arrived in Nashville about half an hour after our original arrival time. Sadly, our luggage didn’t make it on time but we did get it  before the night was out!

Nashville

Day 1

On our first day, we walked towards the Nashville Farmers’ Market and after some breakfast there, we made our way downtown.

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I had no idea when I wrote my book that the 7th President of the United States was from Nashville. His name was Andrew Jackson and by pure coincidence, his wife’s name was Rachel Jackson, a lovely combination of the names of my two main characters 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

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And as we continued on our way down the hill from the Capitol building, we came across The Hermitage Hotel (named after Andrew Jackson’s Presidential home), and Rachel’s bolt-hole when everything goes a bit awry. The clothes shop in the hotel is called ‘Rachel’s Boutique.’ Such a delight finding out these little things along the way.

 

 

 

 

 

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And here is our first view of The ‘Batman’ building as it is affectionately known in Nashville. Everywhere we went, the AT&T building rose high above the skyline and I thought of Jackson describing it to Rachel every time 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

And DSCN0105after we’d had a play around at The Visitors’ Centre, walked the length and breadth of Broadway and had some tasty Tex-Mex for lunch, we went on The Music City Hop On, Hop Off Trolley tour. On our way back to our condo, I led the way past the inspiration for Jackson’s loft.

 

 

 

 

 

Day 2

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And so on to the iconic Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. A wonderful building on both the inside and the outside and we spent hours just marvelling at everything there was to see and hear. We loved the history and the variety of exhibits and memorabilia. Our girls focussed mainly on the Taylor Swift exhibits, of course but they had fun and that was the main thing!

 

 

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It was soon time for our trip to RCA Studio B where so many great musicians have recorded songs over the years. It was a great experience, full of history and memories from another musical era.

 

 

 

 

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And here’s the piano that Rachel sits at, sensing all the greats that have sat here before her, including Elvis Presley.

 

 

 

 

 

Day 3

DSCN0185We were all very excited about this day because I’d managed to reserve us a table at The Bluebird Café where Rachel sings her first ‘Open Mic’ session. It is a very small venue, just about 100 seats in all and I’d been lucky enough to get us a table on my second try at using their automated reservation system. The night we attended, it was an ‘in the round’ session organised by ASCAP (The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers). This meant that the four performers were sat in the middle of the audience and they took turns telling us about their songs before performing them. It was a fantastic show, with such talented performers that you will never have heard of I’m sure but I really hope they all get their moment one day soon. If you want to look them up, they were: Ryan Shea Smith, Austin Jenckes, Andrea Pearson and Jonathan Kingham.

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Day 4

I haven’t told you as yet how beautiful the weather was while we were in Nashville but on this day, it actually rained. It was only a quick shower though and we were soon able to get on our way to visit the Parthenon as we had originally planned.

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It is a replica of the real Parthenon in Greece, of course, built for the Centennial celebrations in Nashville and then rebuilt once again at the request of the people who couldn’t bear to see it torn down once the celebrations were over. It was meant to represent Nashville as ‘the Athens of the South’ on account of all its veritable educational institutions. We had a fun time visiting it and reading all about the history of the celebrations.

 

 

 

 

Next week, I will post about all the other wonderful things we did on our trip which I didn’t refer to in my story, including our days in Memphis. If you haven’t read my book yet though and now feel moved to do so, it is on sale this week at 99p! Here’s the link: http://bit.ly/FromHeretoNashville

Lastly, if you’re in the London area on Friday, April 17th, I will be attending the Indie Author Book Fair, hosted by Triskele Books and the Alliance of Independent Authors at Foyles’ bookshop in the Charing Cross Road. It starts at 4.30pm and it’s free. It would be lovely to see you and sign a book for you.

Thanks for reading as always and do please leave me a comment below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Very Inspiring Blogger Award

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I’ve been nominated for another award! This time, it’s the Very Inspiring Blogger Award and I was nominated by Pam McIlroy whose wonderful blog about reading and writing can be found here.

Here are the rules of the award:

  • Thank and link to the person who nominated you.
  • List the rules and display the award.
  • Share seven facts about yourself.
  • Nominate 15 other amazing blogs and comment on their posts to let them know they have been nominated.
  • Optional: follow the blogger who nominated you, if you don’t already do so.

Seven Things About Me

Well, this is starting to get a bit difficult because I’ve received a few of these awards now and I’m not sure there’s anything new for me to say about myself but I’ll try! I’ve decided to go with a romance theme since it is a very important theme in my life.

  • I write romance novels in my spare time. I hope to publish my first novel before the end of this year so it’s a very exciting time.
  • Talking of romance, I have been married for 25 years and celebrated this milestone with my husband and family with a trip to New York earlier this year.
  • We got engaged in Paris and spent our honeymoon there too. I spent my last big birthday there and we also took my older daughter there for her 16th birthday last year.
  • My husband and I met when we were travelling on a ‘plane to Rome to perform in some choir concerts there. It was to take us more than twenty years to get back again!
  • Travelling is one of my favourite things to do and there are still so many places I would like to see. Apart from Europe, I have only ever been to America so that leaves a heck of a lot of world still to see!
  • I play the piano (not very well) and a little guitar too, as well as being a singer.
  • My favourite romance stories or films are often ones where someone dies! I’m not quite sure what this says about me 🙂 Anyway, I love the film ‘Truly, Madly, Deeply’ and I also love ‘P.S. I Love You.’ In my view, the best romances make you cry your eyes out!

And now for my 15 nominees:

1. Cat Lumb: The Struggle to be a Writer

2. Heidi-Jo Swain: Writer’s Blog

3. Joanne Phillips: A Writer’s Journey

4. Helena Fairfax: Romance Author

5. Cynthia Harrison: Novelist

6. Karen Soutar: Fact and Fiction

7. J.E. Nice: Writer

8. Rebecca Bradley: Crime Writer

9. Janice Preston: Writer of Regency Romance

10. Bernadette O’Dwyer: Writer

11. Norah Colvin: Teacher and Writer

12. Debi Smith: Writer and Chocolate Lover

13. Sandra Danby: Writer

14. Ruth Livingstone: Fiction Writer and Blogger

15. John de Gruyther: Freelance Writer

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Julie Stock and My Writing Life, 2013 – 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julie Stock and My Writing Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

New York, New York!

A week ago today, my writing blog tour post was published in my absence because I was on a trip to New York with my family to celebrate my 25th wedding anniversary. I was amazed that I had even managed to successfully schedule its publication in the first place and secondly, I was surprised by how my Twitter friends just took it up and so kindly retweeted it on my behalf. This trip was important then for another reason: it brings to an end my first full year of writing and what a year it has been. In fact, this is my 52nd post on this blog as well so I have many, many reasons to celebrate 🙂 I arrived back to the comments from my beta readers on my debut novel, From Here to Nashville as well and these were really encouraging, even more so than on previous drafts so I feel like I am making progress. I am still busy with Camp NaNoWriMo this month which is going pretty well for novel number two and then in May, I will be editing FHTN with a vengeance so I can send it off to the RNA for assessment.

In this post then, I’m going to write a diary celebration of our New York trip because it symbolises the culmination of so many things for me and also because I know you want to know what we got up to. Right?

DSCN8421Friday As you may know, the island of Manhattan divides into Uptown, Midtown and Downtown and very conveniently, we were staying in a hotel right in the Midtown area, a few minutes walk from Penn station, the largest station in America. Our train from Newark (how brave were we?!) brought us into Penn on that first evening and soon, we were checked in and ready to go….to bed! It was about 10.30pm US time so we’d done well to stay awake that long (3.3oam UK time).

On the Saturday morning, we woke up feeling refreshed and ready to explore Uptown so we set off walking up 7th Avenue towards Times Square. It didn’t take us long to work out that the streets go horizontally (our hotel was on West 29th Street) and the avenues go vertically. That first day alone though, we walked almost 50 blocks up to Central Park and found ourselves regularly doing this every day. Anyway, we reached Times Square in about twenty minutes, having photographed every yellow cab in the city on the way and stood there for quite some time, just absorbing the chaos! DSCN8429 I suppose it’s a bit like Piccadilly Circus or Oxford Street, in that it’s one of those iconic places that tourists just have to see. It was chaotic but it was fun as well and it was funny how our two teenage daughters gravitated towards what must be one of the largest Disney stores in the world (two floors no less!)

DSCN8455By the time we reached Central Park, the sun was out in full force and we were having to remove some layers of clothing and put sunglasses on. The park was beautiful and we enjoyed a good stroll around the western side of it leading up to the John Lennon memorial and then, we went on to the American Museum of Natural History, known to all of us from one of our favourite films, A Night at the Museum. We spent a lovely afternoon there, exploring all the exhibits, although we were a little disappointed that none of them do actually move 😉 After that, it was back to the hotel on the subway for the first time, for a rest before dinner and bed.

Sunday was our day to explore Downtown and we had booked to go to Ground Zero first this morning.DSCN8506 I hadn’t heard much from anyone about the 9/11 Memorial and I was glad about this really because it allowed us to come to it with no preconceived ideas. I had expected it to be a moving experience of course but I had no idea just how moved I would be. It left me with an overwhelming sense of sadness for such a tragic and pointless loss of life.

From there, we walked down Wall Street and towards the free Staten Island ferry, which sails right past the Statue of Liberty on its journey to and from the island. We had a pretty good view of the statue but we were still quite far away from it. We’d decided not to RSCN8537visit Liberty island itself for a number of reasons but I think if we do ever go back, that’s something I would like to do. We spent a nice couple of hours having lunch on the island before taking the ferry back and making our way to Brooklyn Bridge.

When we came out of the subway there though, we could hear music playing and were drawn towards it to find out what was going on. We didn’t realise what a treat we were in for. There was a small group of street performers, dancing and performing acrobatics, with various members of the public being ‘persuaded’ to join in and it was a lot of fun on a Sunday afternoon. We made our way, along with hundreds of others, on to the bridge after that, to admire the fantastic view of the skyline and we even saw a couple get engaged whilst we were there! Another wonderful day was drawing to a close. However, that evening, we’d decided to try and go to McGee’s restaurant to fulfil one of my younger daughter’s dreams of eating in the restaurant from ‘How I Met Your Mother.’ We weren’t that confident of getting in and had prepared ourselves for the upset that would surely follow if we didn’t but luckily we did and as we sat in one of their famous booths, drinking cocktails, it felt good to be alive.

DSCN8579Monday Our Midtown day began with a looooong queue to go up the Empire State Building but it was definitely worth the wait and I was also glad that we had left going up until we had been there a few days and could recognise some of the famous landmarks from up on high. We only went up to the 86th floor (!), deciding that going to the 102nd floor wouldn’t necessarily add to the experience, and what a fantastic experience it was looking out across the whole of New York. I love going up a tower of any kind in any city but each one brings its own rewards and this one was no exception. The good weather was still holding and so we had lunch in Madison Square Park, having sung Kirsty MacCall songs as we walked along Madison Avenue. It was lovely sitting in the park watching all the people walking their dogs and cooing over each other’s babies. People watching is one of the best things in life, I think and New Yorkers are very entertaining, friendly people.

The afternoon was taken up with a visit to Grand Central station and the New York Public Library, both as impressive as we’d expected. That evening, as we sat in a lovely pizza restaurant, recommended to us by our Time Out guide, I told my family about my idea for my third novel! What was great was that they all loved the idea and chimed in with suggestions as to how I could develop it. I was so pleased that I’d managed to get their full attention for a start but also that they had liked the idea and I’m now itching to get on with that story 🙂

Tuesday The day of our wedding anniversary dawned and with it came some light rain and slightly cooler temperatures but hey, we’re British, we’re RSCN8643used to that. We spent the whole day at the Solomon R. Guggenheim museum, admiring the vast collection of modern art before taking a cab back to the hotel to prepare for our evening entertainment – we had managed to get tickets to see ‘Once: the Musical’ on Broadway! I can’t begin to tell you how excited we all were and even though it was raining slightly header as we walked up there, it did not dampen our spirits in the slightest. We had front row seats in the mezzanine and it was such a wonderful show and experience. The cast were truly talented and the music was fabulous. It was wonderful and a lovely way to mark our big day. When we came out of the theatre though, we couldn’t believe the change in the weather. It was snowing! We had to dash through it (literally!) to get to the restaurant but we survived and ended the day with a delicious meal and lots of lovely memories.

Wednesday Finally, it was our last day. After the brief flurry of snow, we woke up to a bright but slightly chilly day, perfect for walking down to Greenwich Village and having lunch looking out at Washington Square Park. We said goodbye with regret to New York, having loved every minute of our stay. I hope that we’ll get back there but for now, the memories of this trip will serve me for a long, long time.

As always, thank you so much for reading and if you have any memories of a trip to New York that you’d like to share, I would love to hear them.

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© Julie Stock and My Writing Life, 2013 – 2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Julie Stock and My Writing Life with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.