Sunday morning we checked out, held our luggage at the hotel, and got on the subway to One World Trade Center. It is amazing that the new 1776-ft-tall building is almost twice as tall as anything around it, but as you get close, you cannot even find it when surrounded by the concrete jungle until you reach the open memorial area. Not only were there lines to get into the 9/11 museum, but we were afraid even if we did get in, we wouldn’t have enough time do to the museum proper justice. I did see the 2002 memorial exhibit at the Smithsonian which was difficult enough to see only one year later. We walked around both reflecting pool fountains where the twin tower buildings used to be, noting how much thought was behind the memorial details, like deeply carved names so years of weather and human touch could not diminish them. It was hard on both of us to read so many names on the memorials, seeing the white roses placed by hand each day to remember birthdays, and when I would see a name with “…and her unborn child” I couldn’t keep from crying.
We headed next for the One World Trade Center Observatory since we figured we could rush through that if necessary and didn’t know how long the lines would be. We got lucky asking at the little ticket information umbrella since she was offering discount cards for the priority line only $8 more than standard ticket when it was usually $25 more! We took that option, bypassing the lines, and getting up the elevator with cool historical time-lapse video “view” on all 4 walls. Since they started so far back in history, collapsing over 500 years into a couple minutes, the original World Trade Center twin towers were built in a flash and only there a few seconds before they dissolved into nothing. In the waiting area, there was another well-done New York montage video, with Glen & me looking behind us to check out the projector setup, of course! For $15 extra you can rent a tablet you can point at the view that had augmented reality overlays with clickable stories about some landmarks and buildings…but the wacky Jenga building must have been built since the app, since it’s not even on the tablet as under construction…I was sure curious about that one! We enjoyed a drink at the bar enjoying the view while splitting a really tasty Reuben sandwich & identifying all the “observation” equipment from antique to modern decorating the bar area.