|The Empire State Building as seen from Brooklyn (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
In popular culture the famed skyscraper has been climbed by the giant ape King Kong and has been a rendezvous of lovers in films like Sleepless in Seattle. The Empire State Building has been visited by fictional characters, used as a plot device, been a focal point of the setting, and destroyed in apocalyptic scenarios. Many miniature Empire State Buildings have been purchased as souvenirs to be displayed in homes around the world as a memento of vacation visits. For decades the Empire State Building has been a go to place for tourists as well as all realms of media and arts.
Twice I've gone to the observation deck of the skyscraper--both times with my parents when I was younger. I don't remember much of either visit. The first time I was probably about five years old. The second time was during my first year of college. Both visits were such whirlwind affairs that most of what occurred during these trips is a blur.
My most recent visit was in 2004. This was when my sister Joy was still living in New Jersey. My wife and I took the train with Joy and one of our daughters into the city for a day trip. It was one of those rushed days when we tried to take in as much as we could in the few hours that we had. It was July and the weather was hot as one might expect for that time of year.
We went to the Empire State Building with the intent of going to the top, but when we saw how much it cost and how long the wait was we decided that going up was not worth it for us on that day. Spending a hour waiting and then another hour with the experience didn't seem to make sense for us when our time was at a premium. At that time the cost per visitor was over $25. Somehow it seemed like an overly expensive elevator ride.
Still, if I had more time to make that sightseeing excursion to the top of the Empire State Building, I'd probably do it. If you go to visit NYC it's a good idea to have a lot of money on hand. Everything seems expensive and it's easy to spend a lot of money without even realizing you're doing it. Come to think of it though I guess that's the case just about anywhere you go these days, especially in a vacation destination.
If you're in New York City and have the time, you should at least visit the Empire State Building and look up even if you don't have the time or money to go to the top. From street level it can be dizzying to look upwards at the buildings all around you. After a while one looks as tall as the next. Personally, I do better at looking up than looking down.
If you've been to the top of the Empire State Building, was it worth it? What is your favorite book or movie where the Empire State Building plays an important role? Do heights make you uneasy?
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Sometimes I feel my issues about writing, blogging and life in gereral are turning into a tower that I am continually trying to climb in order to reach the top. Unlike a fixed landmark like the Empire State Building, new floors keep being added so that reaching the top is a never ending journey. There are times when I get so tired that I just have to sit down and rest while at other times I feel like I''m bursting with energy. I'm still climbing. And I'll keep on climbing.