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Last weekend went by offered one of the great experiences I had in this country. Friends, sandwiches, snacks, wine, poker, lake, beautiful weather – all packed into one and it culminated into a fantastic summer picnic in the gorgeous Central Park amidst the hustle bustle of the “New York” city.

I have never been a fan of picnicking even in my childhood days. No..seriously! I believe everyone is different. But this was truly fantastic and it clearly goes as one of the best memories I will take away from this country.

Central Park sprawls across 840 acres at the center of the beautiful Manhattan. It makes me wonder how they manage to maintain this lush green in between the man made concrete skyscrapers. To me New York was initially a kind of concrete jungle with tall buildings and state of architecture all around. During weekends they block the vehicles traffic and the roads become the delight of joggers and bikers (they call it bikes here instead of cycles) to enjoy the fresh air.

A group of closed friends decided to soak into the start of the summers. So we ended up deciding to do this central park thing. Did some basic preparation – sandwiches, snacks, water cooler and poker and off we took the PATH train from Jersey to the City and a small cab ride to reach the destination. Now, Central Park has so many different areas where you can lay down your blanket and picnic basket. We picked up a beautiful spot near the man-made lake and the famous “Bow Bridge”. Now for those who love romantic flicks, you will find number of romantic shots taken on this bridge from popular movies such as “You have got a mail”, “Maid in Manhattan”.

5 hours flew by endless chit chats, people watching, and playing poker. Alcohol is technically prohibited in this park, but we managed to sip in some delicious wine under the wraps. We plan to do this one more time before summers fades away.

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So here I am far away from everyone. 😦 I was overwhelmed reading such wonderful words and responses on the last post. Thanks everyone from the bottom of my heart for wishing me luck. I need it. Your best wishes and love. Always!

Okay. I am feeling little lonely out here. But I believe this feeling will mitigate and definitely it is not the same as it was the very first day when I was all alone in the Guest House. Every thing is a new experience here and it started the moment I landed.

One of the best experiences was an hour drive from Newark Airport to New Jersey in a limousine. Yeah! Limo it was…a big black one! 🙂

Aha! How can I forget this wonderful incident which actually reinforced my thought to reach out to folks who need help. I wanted to make a call back home to inform my parents that I have landed safely. It took me several hours to figure out from where I can buy an international calling card. Unlike India there is no STD/ISD booth here 😦

And when I walked into one of the departmental stores, I saw thousands of cards stacked up! And guess what, I was not able to figure out which would be the one I need. Asking few people around was not helping either. Then I happen to see one Indian and just rushed to him and narrated my plight. He was an angel…seriously! I cannot even think that someone can help me out in this way. This guy told me that I will not get the calling card here. He made a phone call to his dad who owns a store and noted down the calling card details with the pin number and all.

He walked with me to the public phone booth and explained me how to make a call to India. And then he walked away. I was like…I ran to him and said thank you so many times that he would have got bugged! 🙂
And he dint accept money from me! Do you believe that!!!! He calmly said that this card has 30 minutes talk-time available which would help you to call back home for few days. I was dazed!! I was speechless! God bless this guy!!
Finally, I was able to speak with my parents using that card!
I believe I used to see such things only on hindi movies!!

There are more experiences to share. But will leave it for the next post! 🙂

Till then…you folks stay tuned and keep blogging. As usual, blogger is blocked in office and I can only read the post but would be unable to comment. For wordpress..there is no problem. So my blogger friends..I am keeping tab of your regular posts even though I am not dropping any comment! And once I get a laptop and settled with an internet connection at home..I will be back with my comments as well.

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