- Overall what we did: 13 days split into: 5 days in Honolulu, 2 days in Miami, 3 days in New York and 3 days in San Francisco from 3 September 2014 to 5 September 2014 and 20 September 2014 to 28 September 2014
- Favourite part of the United States: Yosemite, it’s incredibly beautiful; however, it is also incredibly cold at night.
- Key tip: Be prepared for the cold in Yosemite at night… I wasn’t…
- Cultural points:
- Language: Just be a bit careful with speed, and also saying things with a positive and negative statement like “No, thank you”. We had a few confused people the first time we were in America due to some differences with how Australians speak so it can be beneficial to rephrase if the person is a bit confused.
If you don’t believe me, at various points over the two times I’ve been in America I’ve been asked, “Are you speaking French/German…?”
- Highlights: Wandering around Yosemite, flying into New York (dream come true!) and seeing Wicked of course!
- Best Experience: Seeing a performance of Wicked. Without a doubt that was a highlight, and was on the edge of my seat for the whole performance. Shed a tear at the end though as was rather sad that the rest of my family missed out on seeing the show several years ago due to the hurricane which cancelled our flights. Hopefully they’ll be able to go back one day and see it.
- Worst Experience: Walking along a street at night, and behind us was a African American gentleman (rather tall and broad). He surprised me a little as I wasn’t paying attention and didn’t realise he was there. We hopped out of his way as we were moving a bit slowly, but it was what he said that made me rather sad – “Excuse me, no need to be alarmed. Wouldn’t want to startle you.”
Why would I need to be alarmed? To me, an excuse me would be more than enough and it took a little for it to sink in. I can’t imagine what it would be like to be afraid to be yourself, or to have to justify your existence in your own country just because of your race. Very sad.
- Must See Attraction: Central Park is beautiful, and if you like nature than Yosemite is a must.
- Most Over-hyped Attraction: … I’m not going to be popular after this. The Freedom Tower. Yes I said it. Symbolism and all that aside, it’s just a big glass block – looks pretty when there are clouds reflected in it, but it’s no different to any other skyscraper in my opinion.
- Would I go back? Well, considering that this is the second time I’ve been to the States… most likely yes. Would I go back straight away, probably not no as there are plenty of other places I should visit, but I wouldn’t say no to going back.
- Arriving in Waikiki
- Climbing Diamond Head
- Oahu Photography Tour, Part 1
- Oahu Photography Tour, Part 2
- Heat of Miami
- Hunting for Cuban Food
- Arriving in New York
- Being a Bit Wicked
- Sailing Past the Statue of Liberty
- Arriving in San Francisco
- Arriving in Yosemite
- Hiking in Yosemite
- Fast Food and Fries in the United States