Pete's Log: Fencing NCAAs & NYC

Entry #1242, (Travel)
(posted when I was 23 years old.)

So I travelled to New Jersey to watch the NCAA Fencing Championships at Drew University. Pictures of this trip are online. I got some really nice pictures of New York, in my opinion.

I drove out with Meagan. We stopped in Cleveland to have dinner with her "brother" and his wife. We arrived in Jersey sometime after 1 am. We stayed with Nicole, a friend of Meagan's who used to fence at ND.

Day 1 of fencing. We found our way to Drew and watched the women fence. After the fencing Meagan and I found we had to waste some time. So we grabbed some bagels and found a cemetery where we sat down and ate. After that we wandered around some. We then had dinner at a Japanese place. It was pretty good. Then we watched Ice Age. Then we went to the hotel where the team was staying. We hung out with Cari and Destanie for a while. I painted Destanie's nails blue. Then we decorated the doors of ND's women fencers. Then sleepy time.

Day 2 of fencing. The women finished up pretty strong. Cari got all-american! ND won women's foil and women's epee. ND's second foilist got second place. After the fencing Nicole, Meagan, and I went to a Thai place for dinner, then watched Blade II. Then we went to the hotel and partied with the team. That was interesting.

Day 3: NYC. Since I was so close, I felt I had to go take a look at New York City. So I did. I took a train into Penn Station ($6 round trip!). My plan at first had been to pick up a map and ride the subway around to various cool places, but once actually in the city, I just starting wandering. New York kicks ass! I had so much fun. All I did was walk around lower Manhattan. First I found Macy's, then Times Square. Then I wandered around the Theater District some. Then I walked East until I hit water. I came across the Public Library and Grand Central, and then the UN building. Then I wandered West back to 2nd ave and headed South from there to Houston. Followed that West until I hit Broadway again. Took that South through SoHo. Just as it was starting to get dark I chanced upon St. Paul's chapel.

I spent a while looking at the 9-11 memorials people had set up there. Then the Tribute in Light came on, so I wandered closer to that. I spent a lot of time wandering aimlessly around the perimeter of ground zero. Being there, the WTC attack hit me much harder than it ever did when I saw footage on the news. It was shocking. I finally tore myself away from that area and walked back to Penn Station and returned to New Jersey. I definitely need to visit New York some more. I could even spend a year or two living there, I think. There's so much there, and I had so little time to look.

When I got back I found out that the men had not fenced very well that day. Day 4 of fencing didn't go very well either, and ND ended up finishing third.

We left New Jersey at about 14:30. We picked up a couple more passengers for the trip home: Nick and Erin. We made really good time driving back, getting back into South Bend before 1. It was a good trip. NYC kicked ass, it was fun to watch the fencing, and New Jersey was pretty nice. I'd heard so many bad stories about Jersey, but I guess I lucked out and saw one of the nice parts of the state.