I'm certain there is no place else on earth like Times Square.
When we arrived in New York on Sunday night, checked in to our hotel, and had gone out to a quick dinner with four deliriously tired children, we decided to take a quick detour through Times Square on the way back to our hotel.
The masses of people!
At 9 PM on a SUNDAY night?
I can't even imagine what the electric bill from that place must look like.
Our children were instantly revived by all of the excitement and told us that they weren't tired anymore and could stay up all night. Despite their pleas to stay out for just 5, 10 ... 30 minutes longer - and my desire to soak it all in, I've got this nagging maternal instinct that compelled me to lead my children straight back to our hotel.
"I'm so sorry kids, but Mommy isn't going to let her first graders and preschooler stay up all night dancing in the middle of Times Square with the Naked Cowboy. Yes, I know you want to. And yes, I know I said this is the City that never sleeps. But you my little friends, do."
We made our way back to our hotel, tucked our children in to bed, and they were asleep before their sweet heads even hit their pillows.
But the next morning (after Rockefeller Center and our prayers for eternal forgiveness at St. Patrick's Cathedral) we went back to Times Square to see it during the day and it was just as awe-inspiring as it had been at night. I was so very happy that I'd made the decision to pack the children's bright yellow jackets, but wished I'd pursued my idea of tying ropes around all of them, and back to myself. There were so many people, moving so quickly, that if I let go of one of their hands, I was certain they would have been swept away in an instant.
Once again, even in the daytime, I was struck by the intensity of this place. The advertisements and marketing, bombarding every sense. I was truly in awe.
I have no idea who this man is. He wandered in to my frame as I was about to snap a picture of the Hershey building.
Hello there, sir!
I like how your camera matches your coat!
We were stopped by a team of Maybelline models who asked for us to vote on a beauty contest, being held in Russia, where various women were trying to win an all-expense paid trip to New York. They'd be treated to a shopping spree, make-over and modeling shoot.
So we stood directly beneath the jumbotron and watched the beautiful Russian faces pop up, voting for those we thought should win. We wound up casting a vote for six different women because they were all beautiful, and in our opinions, all deserved this once in a life-time adventure.
As we stood there, looking at the various contestants, the screen suddenly switched to this...
See that little mob of yellow right in the middle?
Another benefit of bright yellow jackets (that match the McDonald's arches?)
Distinct visibility on the Times Square jumbotron.