We will return to my exploits in Northern Italy next week, but today wanted to share an adventure I am very proud of – specifically because I had major trepidation about it.  From the video above you have surmised that it has something to do withy flying and you might wonder:  why is this special?  I fly all the time all over the world!  Yes, readers I love to fly – IN AN AIRPLANE.  I have even flown in “puddle-jumper” 4 and 5 seaters between islands of Costa Rica and Hawaii.  I haven’t even minded when children had to be first shooed off landing strips before our lands could touch ground.  But there is a vehicle (honestly two – one for later posting) that has always given me the jitters:



Not sure where this fear came from – but conquering this fit right into my goal of stretching beyond my comfort zone – so when a fabulous opportunity came up to take a 30 minute ride around New York – it felt like Kismet.  On a beautiful October morning with butterflies in my stomach I met my friend at the NY Heliport on Pier 6 in lower Manhattan.  The butterflies quickly turned to adrenaline fueled excitement as the chop chop chop of departing and arriving helicopters filled the skies over my head:





Now this is not a simple buy a ticket, get on and go – a bit of nervousness is understandable – we must go through an pre-flight instruction including donning a life jacket and familiarizing oneself with the various operations – although we have all gone through the instructions given on a plane – it is more vivid when you are already wearing the jacket and realize that there are no flight attendants on board to help.  The six-seater helicopter also has to be carefully loaded to make sure weight is even distributed.  Unfortunately my friend ended up in a rear facing  chair so her view was often after the fact – but honestly no less exhilarating.  Even getting to the helicopter is intricate – as there are strategically placed lanes of access noted on the ground on the Pier 6 landing strip – which must be strictly adhered to avoid decapitation from the whirling blades of an arriving or departing copter.  There was NO urge this time, as I sometimes get on a journey, to go off the prescribed path.



Onto the landing strip  we go to our designated helicopter – doesn’t it look tiny?



Boarded,  our headphones on, we lock ourselves in and take a deep breath and off we go – let me tell you – the bank of a helicopter is in no way similar to that of a plane – that and the wind gusts added a little disorientation to the butterflies, adrenaline and whatever else was now coursing through my system:


I soon get my air legs and sit back and enjoy the incredible views with a unique perspective  – here are some of the more iconic – starting first with our beautiful Statue of Liberty:





No I didn’t suddenly become a daredevil – the outside airborne shots of our helicopter were provided by the tour service.

Here is lower Manhattan including the Freedom Tower  – truly an awesome sight:








This is what it looked like passing by – courtesy of my friend Lenore – thanks!  I took out the sound of the chopping blades:


The Lower West Side including ferry docks:






Heres the George Washington span over on the New Jersey side:




And this, I think needs no introduction:




a couple of New York Bridges – can you guess which ones and what this island is?




A peek at the Intrepid – can you see the fighter jets on board?




I even managed to get a shot of the propeller of the helicopter:

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The thirty minutes flew by (pun intended) – and soon we were back on terra firma with a local journey experienced and another fear  conquered.  Here is my landlubber view of the Brooklyn Bridge  – not bad:




it has been a great day – now still on my bucket list:






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