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New York - 4th of July in Central Park

Did you see the Fourth of July celebrations in central park New York?
by Andrew Regan

I began my love affair with New York one afternoon a few years ago. The fantastic music of George Gerswhin was playing in the background as fireworks exploded above my head as if trying to emphasize the already striking skyline of Manhattan ...and then the movie finished I knew I'd have to go. Yes, up until recently Woody Allen movies and episodes of Sex and the City had brought me as close as I'd come to the city that I love.

But it all changed a few weeks ago: I finally achieved my ambition and it did not disappoint. I had the time of my life as I celebrated the 4th of July in central park, New York. I booked my flight to New York with British Airways. While no-one I spoke to could ensure that I'd be seated next to someone fabulously good looking or devastatingly famous - I had been hoping for perhaps David Beckham or Scarlett Johanson, but thanks to the kind women at the enquiries desk, who made sure I had the window seat, what I actually got was far more beautiful and even more prominent, my first real glimpse of New York as we came in for touch down.

Everything about New York appeals to me: Cream cheese bagels, smoke rising up from drains in the sidewalk, central park, pretzels, yellow cabs, one dollar bills.... I couldn't hold myself back. I had such a strong image of what everything is going to be like. I arrived at JFK in the early morning and got a cab downtown. The grey London summer was a distant memory as I sat in a cute café dunking a donut in my coffee and looking out at the clear blue skies. Louis Armstrong was playing on the radio and I was dressed like Carrie Bradshaw. How perfect life can sometimes be. I bought myself some lovely little designer shoes and indulgent chocolates and then climbed the empire state building.

I specifically arranged my flight to New York so that I could be there for the world renowned 4th of July celebrations. On the night of the fourth there was a mass of red, white and blue across central park - exactly as I had it etched in my mind from the countless movie scenes and TV series' for which it has provided the backdrop. I did the obligatory feeding of the pigeons, made a wish at one of the many fountains and took hundreds of photos of trees and legendary New York buildings. I sat outside and picnicked with the thousands of New Yorkers who were outside enjoying the sun and celebrations and in the evening we had the 'oh' and 'ah' as fireworks lit up the night sky. I was smitten.

I felt just that little bit hollow as I flew back home to London the next day. Then again, there's nothing to stop me from heading back for the second time, third, fourth...

It's an experience I fully recommend.

About the Author
Andrew Regan is an online journalist who enjoys socialising at his local Edinburgh rugby club.