Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Stay-cation? or On The Road Again?

I've decided to extend my stay-cation into this week.  If you were here last week, you'll know that I've been trying to get out and about in the city to do some "touristy" things, some of which I have never done before. Yesterday I used the stay-cation motivation to get myself to do something I've been wanting to do for a while, but always put it off because it is so close to where I live that I "can do it anytime".

I have lived on either side (NJ/NY) of the George Washington Bridge for most of my life.  I have driven over it countless times but have never walked, run or ridden my bike across its long, beautiful steel gray span.  Until now.  Yesterday, with the early morning sun at my back, just rising over the eastern skyline (planned for optimal picture taking!) I went out in search of the pedestrian path that would take me up along the bridge's southern walkway.


How can I describe this to you?  It was exhilarating.  You know, in a scare my pants of kind of way.  I have walked across my share of bridges (Brooklyn, Williamsburg, Golden Gate come to mind).  I am not scared of heights and I have a generally adventurous spirit (I even climbed to the top of the Sydney Harbour Bridge once!).  So I wasn't expecting this bridge walk to cause my knees to go a little weak--it never even crossed my mind.  But I was on a mission to capture some shots for the "On The Road" photo challenge and there was no turning back.

Why was it scary?  Perhaps partially because I was alone.  I kept wishing my Hub was there with me--both because it was so beautiful, and so he could tell me to calm down.  Another reason it made me anxious?  The noise! The walkway is literally right next to the rush of cars, trucks and buses whooshing by.  And, the number one reason this walk was scary?  The movement!!  As we all know, suspension bridge move.  They are supposed to sway from side to side and jump up and down a little, but just because I know that, doesn't mean I want to feel it beneath my feet.

{this is my entry for the photo challenge.  please insert your own sound effects}

The vibration when a large truck flew by even made the railing on the outer edge of the bridge...you know, the one that keeps me from falling into the Hudson River--rattle and make this loud noise like it was going to fall apart.  Each time I heard that, I actually made a little panicky-squealy noise in the back of my throat.  For some reason, this made me feel better.  I even got brave enough to hold my camera over the edge of that rattling railing to take some shots of the roads, train tracks and pathways below me.

{in this one above, you can just make out some of the skyscrapers in lower Manhattan in the upper right corner}


I only made it out to the first tower before I convinced myself that I had:  A) gotten enough photos for the challenge and B) accomplished my goal of walking on the bridge.  I will cross the entire span another time!

Since I risked my life and everything (did you know that the GWB has the greatest vehicular capacity of any bridge in the world?), please allow me to share just a few more photos:

{wow, those cables are so huge!}


{and you know I had to play with the iPhone camera--shot with Plastic Bullet}

{shot with iPhone Format 126}

{this one is back on solid ground, looking down over the traffic from Ft Washington Avenue}

Is there anything that you've been meaning to do that is so close to your home but you never seem to find the time to do it? There's still time left this summer.  Maybe it will even exhilarate you in ways you never expected!

Shared as part of the "In A Yellow House" photo challenge, being hosted this month by Ashely Sisk.  Leave me a comment :) then go check out who else went on the road this week!



ETA:  I just stumbled upon this beautiful blog and couldn't wait until next week to join in on the fun with their "Tuesdays Around the World" meme.  It's a beautiful collection of photos from all over the globe. Wow.


30 comments:

Ashley Sisk said...

These shots are incredible. I love the shot you entered...I definitely heard traffic noise.

Stephanie said...

I'm nervous just looking at your pictures... you are a brave soul! At least you have pictures to show for it!!

Mommy2Four said...

Amazing shots...... makes me wanna go find a bridge to capture!

Buckeroomama said...

Great shots!!

There are many interesting places around here that I haven't visited and I've lived here for 15 years. When overseas friends come to visit, sometimes those are the times that I get to visit those places with them!

The OriginalPsyn said...

Awesome shots, thanks for sharing.

Mrs. Claus said...

Cool pictures. I lived in Newburg, NY for a little while, and sometimes would go to NJ to hang out. (A long time ago.) Thanks for your great comments on my blog!

photoknitdog said...

I've never walked the GWB, though like you I've driven on it several times. I can imagine how scary it is, though! I've felt that bridge move when *driving* so I'm guessing walking is a whole lot worse. Glad you made it through safe and sound with some great pictures to share with us! :D

Tricia said...

What beautiful view. Although, I am sure I would have been quite nervous, as well. ;)

Alan Burnett said...

Wonderfully informative and entertaining. Your Stay-cation project has a similar feel to the Ten Square thing I am doing at the moment. I am told by those who know such things that what we are both doing is called psychogeoegraphy : a movement started in France some 50 years ago!.

Brooke said...

you are braver than I...I don't know if i'd be able to walk out there, I have a bridge phobia, even driving over the short ones here in Oklahoma, especially over water! Love our pictures they are great, I love the one overlooking the bridge and the one looking down where you can see the railroad.

Bunch of Barrons said...

These are great! I really like that one you shot with "plastic bullet". I have a Droid, which I love, but am always jealous of the great camera and apps they have on the iPhone...I'd get one just for that if Verizon ever starts carrying iPhones.

Fotobloggen 2010 said...

great photos, good story

thanks for commenting!

Ewa said...

Love the pictures!
I am not afraid heights but I'm not sure If I'd be able to climb that bridge
thanks for stopping by at my blog and leaving the comment, I'm your new follower

Annelie said...

I'm just the same. But now we have moved to Stockholm, and I WILL discover this city, and not do as I usually do! I have said so often, I want to see that, but I can do it tomorrow! But it will never be.....
Lovely photos, love them!

Tiffany said...

love the editing, they really pop! :-) thanks for the comment!

Jamie said...

Who knew a bridge could be so beautiful

kbreints said...

SUCH fantastic shots! Very different from my entry.. in fact could not be more opposite!

Virginia said...

Love the shots! It is a pretty amazing bridge.

That view south, down the Hudson... It's so funny, because I know that view and that particular grassy area better than I know parts of my own neighborhood. Simply because I've spent most of 2008 and 2009 at NYPH with my sister-in-law who was really sick. She was in the hospital so much she almost always got a river-view room.

So many damn emotions spring up looking at that picture. And I haven't been to that area in a year.

Life with Kaishon said...

Oh my goodness. You made a big metal bridge look amazing. I was gripping the edge of my bed as I read. How frightening that noise must have been.

Thank you so much for joining us at communal global. We are delighted to have you participate. I can't wait to get to know you more. Your pictures are truly beautiful.

Mildred said...

Great pictures and I even felt a little nervous just looking at them!

Samantha said...

Awesome pictures! I felt like I was standing on top of that bridge too!

Danelle said...

Wow! Simply amazing! Pretty sure I would have been a little scared myself.

Carol said...

Great entry! Of all the entries, yours caught my eye first. You are braver than I am, I'm not sure I could have stepped foot on that bridge.

Kindred Spirit said...

These are truly amazing shots!

Faded Highways Photo Journal Exploring the Old Highways of the South said...

WOW these are gorgeous. I simply can't pick a fav because I love them all. Great job. Thanks for stopping by.

Krystal said...

fun that you finally did the bridge! doesn't it feel dangerous? you got some good pics:)

Clare B said...

great picture and a lovely story to do with it. You know you're going to have to cross the whole bridge now - some day anyway.

Kristine Norina said...

I love your photos too! especially your entry =) i don't really get to roam around china that much, it's more for work and i work on the weekends there too lol but there are some beautiful places though which i've never been to yet ♥

R Montalban said...

Nice shots

Dina @ 4 Lettre Words said...

These are awesome! Really love the fence perspective.

Have a wonderful weekend!