Monday, February 28, 2011

Touring The Boken

(That's totally what the kids are calling it these days.)

Despite how busy Eric has been at work for the past week, he was able to take the weekend to relax and we spent some time over the last two days exploring our new hometown. The weather was great, especially on Sunday, when it was beautifully sunny and in the high 40s. Nice! That's great exploring weather.

Saturday we set out to the south down Washington Street. Our first stop was for some pommes frites at a little local shop, and they were DELISH.

Washington Street

Pommes Frites! I haven't had them since we stopped for some in the Village back in our very early NYC days.

We tried three different dipping sauces: cheesy ranch, pesto parmesan, and rosemary garlic. Mmmm.

We continued on south, cutting through Hoboken Terminal to get to Newport. We paused for a few photos in the recently restored waiting room. This weekend I did lots of Googling and research about sights to see in Hoboken, and my sources tell me that Hoboken Terminal was a place of firsts: Thomas Edison controlled the first departure of a regular-service electric train from Hoboken Terminal; Hoboken Terminal was the first public space to have central air-conditioning installed; and the first non-experimental use of mobile phones took place there. Riveting stuff! Hoboken Terminal has apparently also been used for film shoots for movies including Funny Girl and Julie & Julia, and Eric Clapton's "Change the World" video. It's famous!

Inside the waiting room at Hoboken Terminal

I loved the stained glass ticket windows

We then continued on along the waterfront to Target, where we naturally did some shopping before heading back towards home, again along the water.

South Manhattan behind me

Sea gulls! It's just like being back in Florida. Except not really.

An interesting view as we came out of Target - the Hoboken Terminal clock tower, looking like it's about as tall as the Empire State Building!

 I had to include this one because Eric likes it. We picked up Hostess cupcakes as a snack at Target, and he laughed at how I eat them (I eat all the cake and leave the frosting squiggle for last). Here I am, busted!

Once we got back into Hoboken, we wandered through Pier A Park then back north along the River Waterfront Walkway. We couldn't help but stop for more photos of that irresistible skyline across the Hudson.

Statue of Sam Sloan, president of the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad Company for 32 years. Also pictured: the aforementioned Terminal clock tower, and a sea gull.

Walking along the paths of Pier A Park

Beautiful Manhattan

I will never tire of looking at this building.

Quick tangent - isn't perspective a funny thing? From our old view at our last apartment, the Empire State Building looked so small, or about the same size as the rest of the buildings. But when you take a step back (to Hoboken!) and look at the skyline, you can really see how it towers over the other buildings. To give you a little clearer idea of the difference, check out these photos:

This is what we see now from Hoboken. We lived at W. 54th Street, and the Empire State Building is 20 blocks south of there at 34th Street.
Other notable landmarks you have seen from our view pictures include the Time Warner Center (SW corner of Central Park), which we could see to the left from our former living room, and One Worldwide Plaza, which was a prominent feature in our former view.

And this was our view for the past two years. You can see that One Worldwide Plaza looks like the tallest building, while the Empire State Building looks rather short.
(You can't see the Time Warner Center in this picture; it would be further off to the left.)

It's kind of neat to get to see the view in such a different way now.

Anyway, after our riverfront walk we stopped off at our grocery store for a big ol' shopping trip that left us thrilled with lower New Jersey prices! We spent the night relaxing at home, catching up on TV. We ordered in Italian food from a local place that was quite good (and brought to us by another very friendly delivery man), and enjoyed the nighttime Manhattan view when we took the dog out that night.

Our new nighttime view, taken from just across the street from our apartment

More of that beautiful building I love so much.
I usually post pictures of the ESB lit up in fun colors, but did you know this is it's standard lighting? Whenever there isn't a fun event to light up for, it is lit in classic white. I think it's gorgeous.

Sunday was that beautiful day I mentioned, so Eric got right up and went out for a run (he has another half marathon coming up in a few weeks!), and when we got back we made a delicious french toast breakfast then hit the town. This time we took Achilles with us and headed more west and north to explore more of Hoboken.

Our first stop was Church Square Park, which was just teeming with parents and their young kids out to enjoy the nice day. The park was very nice, with lots of play space for kids, a dog park, a gazebo featuring the names of renowned composers (my sources tell me there are concerts here in the summer), and a couple monuments (including a beautiful Firefighter's Monument that I particularly liked). Adjacent to the park were some lovely churches and the Free Public Library.

 Thanks to the warmer weather, Achilles is sporting his lighter-weight pea coat with hood.

This is a monument to Guglielmo Marconi, the inventor of wireless

The top of the Firefighter's Monument that I liked so much

Gazebo in the center of the park

Our Lady of Grace Church, across the street from the park (we can see the steeple of this church from our apartment now)

Free Public Library, built in 1897, the third library in New Jersey

From there, we went back over to Washington Street to continue north. We did make a quick stop outside a pet store to get Achilles a quick treat from the gumball machine!

 They had a machine for dog treats, and for dog walk bags! How handy.

On our travels we also saw a few other things I read about in my "Hoboken walking tour" research: All Saints Episcopal Church (the oldest continuing congregation in Hoboken), Hoboken High School and Columbus Park (which contains a memorial for a late teacher with a misspelling engraved in the marble), the Columbia Club (formerly a gentleman's society, now condos), and Maxwell's (a restaurant that has hosted up-and-coming musical greats including Nirvana, My Chemical Romance and R.E.M.).

All Saints Episcopal Church

Memorial for a Hoboken High School teacher, with an unfortunate misspelling ("remembrance")

The Columbia Club


We then went over to the water for our walk back south towards home. We passed Sybil's Cave, which contains a water spring. Apparently, a real crime that occurred at this cave in 1841 (the murder of Mary Rogers) inspired Edgar Allan Poe's detective story "They Mystery of Marie Roget."

Sybil's Cave

And of course, we paused along the river for more scenery shots, because that's just what we do.

Look in the foreground - it's a beach! Again, just like Florida! Except again, not really.

Hanging out with Achilles along the waterfront

My boys admiring the Manhattan skyline

I just can't get enough.

Before finally going home, we went back over to Washington Street to pick up some cupcakes from Crumbs, because I love me some Crumbs cupcakes. Achilles and I waited outside while Eric ran in. While we waited, we caught sight of the Hoboken Batman, who apparently is famous for showing up all over Hoboken all the time in a wide variety of Batman outfits. Unfortunately, Eric had the camera with him, so I didn't get a picture. But, I did find this picture online of Hoboken Batman taken this past Saturday:

I love that his bike says, "Wow! Batbike." Also, I can tell you that it is fully equipped with a siren for maximum attention-getting.
(Photo from here)


Cupcakes in hand, we finally made it home to spend the rest of the evening relaxing. We cooked ourselves a delicious dinner, watched the Oscars and enjoyed our cupcakes. Great end to a great weekend!


moderndaywife said...

Cute pictures with Achilles! Love that little hoodie he's wearing :-)

MrsSMS523 said...

Wow, the 'Boken looks like such a nice place to live... AND you have your very own Batman. The look on Achilles' face in each photo is so funny. And yay for Target!!!

Megan said...

Oh my gosh, I love all of these pictures! I have never been anywhere around there, so I love living through you!! Achilles is SO adorable!

KT @ KT's Refinishing School said...

I love all the pictures, especially of Hoboken Terminal---I bet one could have a crazy beautiful wedding or reception there!

Happy Monday!

AD said...

Great pics!!!

Molly said...

Yay, it looks like a wonderful place!!