We’re Finally Here

At around midnight last night when we finally turned off the lights and went to bed, the whirring AC clicked off and the room went stone silent.

Then there was a scraping sound. It got louder, and my eyes shot open, listening. I wasn’t sure what it was but it was coming from the window. It wasn’t until I heard the truck whir past that I closed my eyes again and snuggled back under the covers, knowing it was nothing but traffic.

“It’s the loompa loompas,” my mom hissed in the darkness.

Loompa loompas?

I had no idea what she was talking about. But no matter, I almost jumped out of bed and rushed to the window to see the “loompa loompas.”

“What are loompa loompas?” My brother asked.

“You know. The little people who deliver the chocolate from the factory.”

At about one in the morning, this dissolved us into giggles and both my little brother and I exclaimed, “that’s oompa loompas!”

“I knoww, it’s just a joke. Sheesh.”

The chocolate smell in that hotel was making us loopy, I was sure of it. So I was pretty happy to finally get out of there.

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Chocolate World has a free tour that’s about fifteen to thirty minutes long. They also have a make-your-own chocolate bar station, a chocolate mystery game, and a few other activities for a fee, but we arrived especially for the tour. We sat in a roller coaster type cart that was circling a revolving floor then it went off down a track where three milk cows sang in harmony about “milk, milk, milk. Milk chocolaate!”

The tour was pretty awesome. I never realized how much went into making chocolate. And they did great with the visual aids. It was almost breathtaking to see lines and lines of wrapped candies on slanted conveyor belts, all traveling in different directions above our heads.

And we each got a complimentary little bag of Rolos!

We were back on the road after that, and I happened to miss pictures of both our welcome to New Jersey and New York. The sign for New Jersey was on the left side of the road for some random reason and I never saw a welcome sign for New York. We did have a few signs that we were getting closer, like the George Washington bridge.

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And, of course, the city in the distance.

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Trying to find parking by our hotel was a nightmare. The parking lot is under the building, and minuscule. The cars were so jammed together it looked like a dealership.

We found parking under the hotel across the street, then lugged all three duffels, one suitcase, three laptop bags, and a roller up the elevator and out the lobby of that hotel, passed a bored receptionist who didn’t so much as raise her eyes to us, and out onto the street, then down the sidewalk and into the lobby of our hotel.

Of course, to get into our hotel, there was construction happening outside and, not two, but three heavy glass doors to drag open.

I wasn’t feeling pleasant, I have to admit.

We had our first encounter with real live New Yorker talk at a toll road, getting into the city. The blond in her little pay box looked like she was going to flip a table because my mom asked her which way to the George Washington Bridge. Her accent was great, though.

We walked around for a bit after we arrived, and I feel like my accent is so soft now, compared to the booming and opinionated voices of these people. I love listening to them. I’m trying not to be creepy, though.

I’m so excited to be in New York. I’ve always wanted to come here, so I already have a big case of hotel fever and am itching to get out there and see the sights. I’ll be researching more after this post.

My brother doesn’t get off from school until Thursday, but we might see him tomorrow too!

Very excited about the days to come. Very, very excited!

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