Monday 8th January 2017
I got up quite early, 6:30am, got ready and finished packing. I was off to New York!
This was a trip with my course at University, over 100 students in our party. My dad very kindly offered to take me on the train and the underground to Heathrow Airport to meet the others, who had got the bus from Nottingham. We waited at the airport until I knew the rest of my course had arrived, and then dad left me to go and check in and go through security.
It is just my luck that every time I go to an airport, things go wrong! Firstly the check in lady couldn’t find my booking for the flight. I had to wait about two minutes or so before it came up. I was very relieved when everything was sorted! Almost every time I go to an airport, the security body scanner beeps at me and I have to be taken to one side to stand in a booth to be scanned and sure enough it happened again!
There was a lot of waiting in the airport for the flight, but this gave me time to eat my lunch, pick up some water and snacks for the flight, as well as find the others. Once our gate showed up on the boards, we made our way there and boarded the plane.
We were just allocated seats in alphabetical order so I wasn’t sat next to my group, but in some ways I didn’t mind as this gave me a chance to watch a film and try to sleep. The flight was over seven hours and was quite turbulent at times. I did feel quite sick the whole time which wasn’t very pleasant. The landing was also very bumpy.
Once we got to Newark airport, we had to wait in the plane until our number spot was free so the plane could park. There were huge delays at the airport because of the bad weather New York had had previously. One of the terminals at JKF, the main airport in NY, was closed due to the power being down as everything had frozen, therefore flights to here were being directed into Newark.
Once we finally got off the plane, we had a massive, unwelcoming wait go through passport control and immigration. We were waiting in the queue for three hours! When I did finally make it o the desk, my finger prints were not showing up on the machine and therefore I had to be transferred to another booth to have my finger prints done and my retina scanned.
Because we had waited so long in the line, by the time we got to the luggage claim, the suitcases were just thrown everywhere and mine was already off the conveyor belt. One girl even lost her case.
Once we all had our cases, we made our way to our coaches and I found the two girls I was going to be sharing a room with, Poppy and Eleanor. There was still snow everywhere and it was definitely cold outside. We were sat on the coaches for around half an hour before making it to The Walcott Hotel which is located on 31st Street, between 5th Avenue and Broadway.
We were allocated our keys and we made our way up to the room. It was around 1am New York time and 5am UK time by this time so it had been a very long day. The room was quite old fashioned and old, however it was quite spacious.
I was very happy when we were finally sorted in the room and I was eventually in bed. I was definitely ready for the next few days exploring New York.