Wednesday, June 3 - Day 119 - The Queen Mary 2 to New York City
During the night we continued up the channel to New York City after taking on our pilot. WOW, 4:00AM comes awfully early! Why, you may ask. are we up so early....well, to see the QM2 pass under the Verazano Narrows Bridge with only 14 feet to spare and enter New York Harbor!
We are really dragging, but we make it onto the Observation Deck on 11 in time to watch passing under the bridge about 4:30AM...it even looks tight! As we turn the corner into the harbor, we see beautiful New York City all dressed in its night lights! It is quite a sight, spanning more than 180 degrees from Staten Island, the commercial docks, up the Hudson River with its bridges, sparkling Manhattan Island with the bright beacon that is the new World Trade Center building, the East River with the Brooklyn Bridge and finally Brooklyn with just the tiniest hint of a golden red sunrise. We stay out on deck nearly an hour....what a fabulous scene! Sunrise over New York City!
The Captain comes on the PA at 7AM and welcomes us to New York and tells us the ship is cleared and the self service passengers can now leave. After we finish eating, we go back to the room and get our cameras for one more round of photos from Deck Eleven. At the terminal entrance, there is a long line of people waiting for taxis and not a taxi in sight! We stand and watch for a few minutes and see three taxis show up...getting away from the terminal is going to take forever at this rate.
In the lobby, there is a huge line trying to leave...so far they have only called the self service and Queens Grill passengers and it is already a zoo! Lots of people handling their own luggage on this cruise. In the terminal it is even worse. We have a bit of a hassle finding our bags and getting a porter. Once that is done, he gets us in a line for immigration and we think we will be there for an hour or more, there are so many ahead of us. Wrong...there is a separate line with two officers for those of us with porters and we move right along. The officer checks our passports and takes our customs card and we are done, the porter takes us to the Taxi line and suggests we use a fixed price limo for $41 as it will be much faster. We agree and are number two in that line while there are at least 40 people waiting for the regular taxis which are still coming very, very slowly, one every 2 to 3 minutes. By 9:15 we are on our way to the hotel! Worth every penny of the $41 dollars for the private hire.
We get to the to the Wall Street Inn just before 10AM and find our room is actually ready...wonderful! This is a nice little hotel just off Wall Street near the Battery. We are pleased with what we see. It is nicely appointed and seems to be in a very "happening" area.