From my travel journal: Coney Island, 2015

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“This morning – a little cold but the wind settled a little. Out to Brooklyn. Actually, Coney Island was the first stop. And it was COLD out on the water! Very quiet in winter, all but abandoned… the snow from the past week still on the sidewalks, slowly turning to grey sludge. It seemed a poorer area, not as well kept, with a lot of high-rise commission home buildings. The closed amusement park area looked so inviting; I’m not sure what it is about abandoned places that feel so inviting to me, but they really are… I just feel comfortable, roaming alone.”

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Eat here: Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs, Coney Island, New York – Happy 4th of July!

Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs
1310 Surf Ave, Brooklyn, New York
http://www.nathansfamous.com/

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So, it’s not a thing here in Australia (duh), but for all the Americans out there, Happy 4th of July! And yes, I know I’m a day early for the Americans, but it’s the 4th here, so I’m gonna roll with it! While we were in New York in January, we took a trip out to Coney Island (gorgeous!), and when we got to Nathan’s, husband was pretty excited to point out that we were at the home of the famous 4th of July Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest! We were hoping to try one, but being the middle of winter, we weren’t holding our breath – turns out we were in luck, and hot dogs were still happening! Happy days! And a delicious hot dog it was, too. I reckon on a good day I could probably polish off 10, don’t think I’d ever be able to get near the recorn 69 hot dogs polished off by current champion Joey Chestnut. In 10 minutes. Wow. If you haven’t seen this guy in action, follow this link and prepare to be amazed/impressed/horrified/all of the above. If you’re in NYC for the 4th of July and get down to the contest, tell me all about it!! Otherwise, I hope everyone gets to enjoy a delicious hot dog of some description anyway!

 

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Coney Island, New York

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Coney Island was one of those places that was never on my “must see” lists, until I saw a few photos of it in winter not long before we left for our winter trip. There’s something about an abandoned amusement park with an empty ferris wheel in the middle of winter that I find so beautiful – I’m no photographer, but I have always loved carrying a camera around to capture the moments that strike me, so once I saw those pictures, I knew I had to get there while we were in New York.

Coney Island is a residential area in Brooklyn, by the water, and filled with fun things designed to attract families – amusement park rides and an aquarium, a beautiful beach area and good food. But I couldn’t help feeling, as I walked through the neighbourhood on a cold January day, that the area was struggling. I know Coney Island’s heydays are in the past now, but I really got the sense that the area had been neglected and was forgotten about. Maybe that was just because it was winter and there weren’t many people around, but that was just the vibe I got. Pity, because it’s actually a really beautiful area and a lovely way to spend the morning 🙂

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