Tourist Trap: New York, New good they named it twice.

Tourist Trap

What’s your dream tourist destination — either a place you’ve been and loved, or a place you’d love to visit? What about it speaks to you?

Tourist Trap

Photographs all my own unless otherwise stated.

“One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years.” ~~Tom Wolfe

“If London is a watercolor, New York is an oil painting.” ~~Peter Shaffer

I love New York City, Manhattan the place where dreams are made off. Walk down the gridded streets and avenues and watch the world pass before you. The hustle and bustle, everybody rushing around except the tourists who linger and gaze in wonder at the spectacle before their eyes. The noise, which is on times deafening, the continual sound of car horns and taxi cab madness. The vibe that unique NYC vibe. The culture. The vibrant buzz of a life you have never lived or witnessed before.

New York, what can I say? from the first time I looked out of my Continental Airlines 747 window as we approached Newark Airport I fell in love. It was September on that occasion and a lovely if chilly sunny day. I walked with my eldest daughter into the airport and practically died from excitement when we passed the  ”Welcome to the United States of America” sign.


My first encounter with a living breathing New Yorker was the hot guy called ‘Derek’ who was on passport control at Newark Airport and who flirted delightfully with the two British blondes in front of him. A great welcome indeed.

We travelled by car the first time from New Jersey into Manhattan and the sight as we arrived took my breath away, for there in my eye’s view was the Empire State Building in the distance and I thought I was in heaven, then finally we turned onto 8th Avenue & 34th Street and I remember looking out of the cab window and gazing up at the New Yorker Hotel to the right of us thinking ”Wow! that’s iconic” that moment has always stayed in my mind.

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Times Square I admit is best avoided after you have done the first visit, it’s a typical tourist trap but actually at night-time its mind blowing..I love to sit alone at the top of the red steps and watch the world go by. It fascinates me. But in the daytime Times Square as I say is best avoided. New Yorker’s do not go there..they just pass through quickly on the commute to work.

My daughter loves Greenwich Village and yes there is something fabulous about it. Even John Lennon wished he had been born there,get me an apartment with a stoop outside so I can pretend to be Carrie Bradshaw! 

I personally adore Little Italy, Heaven on earth for me is fresh Cannoli in Little Italy surrounded by the mafia ‘Tony Soprano’ types…I love that vibe.( but then I was always a bit odd!) 

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If you have not eaten Cannoli you have not lived. Come with me to Ferrara Bakery and Cafe between Mott and Mulberry and join me with a plate of their famous, irresistible to die for Cannoli, filled with ricotta cream and chocolate chip or maybe indulge in Chocolate Dipped Cannoli, (choccy dipped crispy tube , with ricotta cream and chocolate chips) accompanied by one of their flavoured cappuccino of the day or if its past lunchtime  live wildly and try their Italian ‘Black Tie’ which is a double espresso, with black Sambucu and whipped cream.

I often wonder if I am the only woman on the planet to find the New Jersey Transit train exciting? To be thrilled at trundling through Penn Station with the masses and literally finding that amazing? Am I also the only women who loves the New York subway in general? Very probably.

I love Central Park so much I think I should be allowed to pitch a tent permanently there so I can sit and happily live my days in a world of wonder,in fact my tent should be by Alice in Wonderland don’t you think?  But am I Alice or the Mad Hatter is the question? When I die I want a bench in my name, it shall be written in my will.

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Walk with me to Magnolia Bakery on 6th Ave  for cupcakes.

Lets go for lunch to The City Bakery on West 18th Street moments from 5th Avenue  ( grilled cheese to die for!)

There is one neighbourhood I have yet to have a good adventure in and that’s Brooklyn…but the day shall dawn..countdown to my next visit!


In New York City nobody knows me or knows my history, my failings, my insecurities,  my over thinking, my extremly sensitive bursts into tears over anything self.  In New York I am one of many, walking through the streets, looking up at the skyscrapers, sitting in Bryant Park or passing by the Met, I am one of  the dreamers gazing into the Windows of Tiffany’s on 5th or hoping Donald Trump will walk out of Trump Towers and see I am the future of his empire!

In New York City I am one of thousands lost in the City of Dreams.

New York I miss you, Native New Yorkers I adore you and I will return to you soon.

Love from the Welsh Tourist who longs to be a citizen of the greatest city on this planet.

New York New good they named it twice.



A Moment in Time : Lovestruck.

A Moment in Time

What was the last picture you took? Tell us the story behind it. (No story behind the photo? Make one up, or choose the last picture you took that had one.)

A Moment in Time

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This is the last photograph I took. It was yesterday afternoon at precisely 4.05pm. (or so it says on my Samsung Note 3 mobile!) I had gone into ‘Superdrug’ to buy some mints and at the counter was this display of Vera Wang ‘Lovestruck’ perfume on special offer at just £29.00 instead of the usual £58.00 which is a total bargain. 

Lovestruck is my eldest daughters favourite perfume and I took the photograph to show her incase she wants or needed some more.

That is the story behind the last photograph that I took. 



Weekly Photo Challenge: Serenity in Wales


For this photo challenge, publish an image that conveys serenity 


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DP Challenge: Mature Student Achievement


Have you just run 26.2 miles, finished a long-term project, or met a personal goal? This week, show us an achievement.

I decided in September to start an evening class, once a week for 2 hours in my local college in Wales to re-educate myself. As a mature student (the only mature student!) I have to study a 2 year course in just 26 weeks and with only 2 hours a week tutition I can assure you at times it is stressful. but so very satisfying.

Just before Christmas I sat the first of my controlled assessments in my pure English Language course. I think you will agree by the comments written I did quite well. thats the first hurdle crossed

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DP Challenge: Weekly Photo Challenge: Mellow Yellow


Away with the colors of Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa. Show us what “yellow” means to you.

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<a href=””>Yellow</a&gt;

DP Photo Challenge: Twinkle Twinkle


For this week’s challenge, share with us your photos of twinkling light.

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<a href=””>Twinkle</a&gt;

Once upon a time in a faraway land, you were my friend…

The Unreliable Narrator

This week, consider the unreliable narrator — a classic storytelling device — in your own work, no matter your genre.

Consider a short personal essay explaining your take on the topic. As a reader, how do you feel when you’ve been duped — by a character, by a story


That was a lot of lying for one person to do. Here, sit down. You must be exhausted.


This a true story. This is a sad story of betrayal, lies and deceit.

You were my friend for many years.

One day with no warning you just simply walked away.

”Please understand” you said and left with no other words.

You never looked back.

You were my friend.

I helped you dry your tears.

I gave you confidence when you were scared.

I made you believe in yourself.

I was there when the chips were down.

When no one else had time for you, I was never too busy.

I went without sleep to sit and listen through the be your rock.

You were my friend.

I gave you the best years of my life.

All I wanted was for the respect and friendship to be returned.

I trusted you.

I told you my life.

You were my friend.

I confided my deepest thoughts to you.

I told you my fears.

You knew all my wishes, hopes and dreams.

You were my friend.

I thought you truly cared.

I believed  you would never leave my side and would be my special forever friend.

I listened and accepted all your lies.

I fell for all those stories that you weave, oh how finely that web was woven 

One day I found out the truth, and so you said goodbye and walked away.

”Please understand” were your last words.

You were my friend.

But now you have gone and you are not ever coming back.

And now there’s another chip off an already broken heart.

No I don’t ”understand”  I’m sorry to say.  

I did not deserve such betrayal.

You know what you did  and you show no remorse.

You promised me you would never leave, but you did, without turning to look back.

You broke your promise.  

I have other long-term friends who are true and they care for me.

These sweet angelic people cope with my worsened insecurities and pick up the pieces of the emotional mess you left behind.

All these people are real, they exist and really care for me.


You are just a fairytale….a cruel and sad fairytale with an unhappy ending.

”Please understand” you said.


This is the only time I will say this to you.

No, I don’t ”understand” and no I can’t ”understand”.

I tried so hard to be the friend you needed.

I tried to save you from yourself.

Did you laugh at me behind my back?

Were your  friends amused along side you?

You have hurt me and you don’t seem to care.

But I forgive you.

You were my friend.

I hope you find what it is you are searching for.

I pray you throw away your ugly mask that you hide behind because it’s a cruel joke.

Destroy that hideous monkey on your back, before it destroys you.

And please find truth and love and light.

You were my friend.

I wish you love and peace and happiness.

Please never forget you were my friend. 

Goodbye forever.

How did I get mixed up with this fucking monkey anyhow?



Nighttime falls in Pembrokeshire


It’s trickier to take pictures at night, but the rewards are well worth it.

What nocturnal photos do you like taking? Whether it’s a starry sky, a street lamp, or the shadows cast by your cat, share them with us. Your shot can be outdoors or indoors, blurry or crisp, overexposed or ominously dark. As every owl (and night owl) knows, nighttime is when the real action starts.

Nighttime falls in Pembrokeshire.

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Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile

Autumn Leaves

Changing colors, dropping temperatures, pumpkin spice lattes: do these mainstays of Fall fill your heart with warmth — or with dread?

i love autumn

“Don’t you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address.” Nora Ephron.

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My 2 daughters have inherited my love for Autumn ( or ‘Fall’ for my American followers 🙂 I think its a genetic code, you either grow up loving hot balmy summer days and if you do, its a sure bet your parents loved those days too. In my case ( and my two girls) its end of September going into October that we love. There is something about Autumn that calms my soul, the leaves changing colour, the fresh crisp air after the sticky August many things. Here I shall list my loves in no particular order.

1. Cosy fair Isle sweaters and cardigans…in fact anything that resembles what we call ‘The Christmas Jumper’

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2. Children going back to school in new uniforms and shiny shoes .

3. Buying the new stationary for your child..the pencils and eraser’s and pens and that all important new pencil case.

4. Conker picking

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5. Trees changing colour slowly from green to rust coloured hues.

6. Chopping the logs ready for the soon to be lit roaring fire.

7. Winter boots..better still Uggs…or even better than that, the new Dubarry or Ryedale boots.(want want want)

8. The first Starbucks of the autumn season, either my favourite ‘Toffee nut’ Latte or the next best thing Pumpkin Spice Latte. ( and then as my daughter reminded me, taking a photo of it and putting it on instagram for the world to ohhh and ahhh in wonder!)

9.  Wooly scarfs

10. Warm cosy gloves

11. Any cosy clothing in reds and burnt orange tones.

12. Christmas starting to show itself in store ( yes sad I know, but it reminds us that cosy days are a-coming!)

13. Halloween

14. Pumpkins with candles inside

15. Spiced apple and cinnamon scented candles

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16. Curling up on the sofa with a lovely soft throw and the fire crackling and watching a good old feelgood movie .

17. Curling up by that fire with the doggies and a good book

18. Walking the dogs in the crisp woodland behind my house

19. Watching with great pleasure for the millionth time ” You’ve Got Mail”

Quote from "You've Got Mail." {Which incidentally was a remake of the play-turned-classic 1940 flick "The Shop Around the Corner" starring Jimmy Stewart and Margarte Sullivan.}

20. Closing my seasonal tearoom at the end of October, taking a deep breath and then doing and enjoying all the above.


Brevity is just not in my DNA

Brevity Pulls

“I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time.” — Blaise Pascal
Where do you fall on the brevity/verbosity spectrum?

"I notice that you use plain, simple language, short words and brief sentences. That is the way to write English--it is the modern way and the best way. Stick to it; don't let fluff and flowers and verbosity creep in." ~Mark Twain
I tend to border on verbosity as followers of my original blog are well aware. I basically just talk to much!
So this week I decided I needed to put a notice upon the front door window of my tea room. I needed to get the point across and yet not waffle on so I tried to find a middle ground and I think I succeeded at least I hope so.
Brevity is just not in my DNA.
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