Half way there….(NYC part II)

How do all,

its been a while! About 3 weeks actually, hope you all enjoyed those hilarious pictures of me in a wet suit? If anyone had any problems with viewing them, email me and I’ll see what I can do to rectify the problem!

I’m officially half way through my little trip to the US, (now….do i throw my hands up in the air and shout ‘woohoo’ or do i curl up into a small ball on the floor and rock repeatedly as I realise that in just over 8 weeks I’ll be flying back to blighty?) Whichever I choose to do, I can definately say that so far I have had an absolutely brilliant time! And I wouldn’t change it for the world! Especially the last few weeks since I last updated you on my adventures….

The final week…..

My time in Trumbull as a PDO (player development officer (that has to be one of the greatest elongated names in history….basically it just means I’m a coach) has, allas, come to an end! It was a slow week in whole, many of our practices had low turnouts as it was the final week, the weather didn’t help either as it constantly threatened to rain, putting many people off attending. However, this made the week a lot more enjoyable, as I had started to lose the enthusiasm that I had in the first few weeks for coaching. Me and anthony made up the time we lost coaching by drinking and writing the report for the club, telling them what we have done for the last 2 months.

One thing that did brighten up my week however, was the story of Heather. Heather was the daughter of one of the coaches I had worked with, she had a sister in the same age group who played football and was quite good at it. Heather on the other hand was not very good at football, so she didn’t really want to play because she didn’t enjoy it, she was also a very shy kid aswell. When I took her sisters practice she used to watch, so I asked her if she wanted to join in the practice. After a little bit of persuasion she agreed to join in the practice. I took that team for the next three practices, and each time she agreed to join in. The final monday came, and Anthony and myself were running a coaching skills clinic (where kids from all teams come for a 2 hour skills coaching session, the more dedicated players usually turn up to this) and I saw heather coming with her sister and her father. Heather join in the clinic! Which was great, a month ago she would never have done such a thing! Her father came over thanked me for doin a good job with the team, he then pointed out that Heather had new boots and shinpads, “thats nice” I replied. He then went on to explain why she had them, “We bought Heather some new boots because shes decided to start playing soccer. She enjoyed the practices with you so much that she begged me to let her start playing on the team next season. She only came to this clinic tonight because she knew you were taking it.”

I know its a slightly nausiating ‘feel good’ story, but when he said that, it made everything feel worthwhile. It didn’t only make my day, it made my whole season, that I helped someone enjoy football, so much so that they take it up, made me feel brilliant.

Saturday came, the final day of our program. We said our goodbyes, our thankyou’s and our good ridance’s and that was the end of that.

Awwww…. well now thats over I can tell you about what I’m doing now I’ve finished Trumbull.

In true Gorman fashion, I’ve decided to half a little time off…two weeks actually. After such a strenuous two months of working 3 hours a day I decided the best thing for me to do was to have a break. And what did I do for my first week off…I invited my Dad, sister and girlfriend over to see me.

They arrived last friday, a few hours late, at a hotel that I had booked them into. After a few hugs and a couple of kisses we went over for a meal at my family housing, so my English family could meet my American family. All went smoothly and my family retired to their hote,l around 10pm, still on english time so they were a bit tired to say the least.

On Saturday we headed to New York City by train. We made good time, and found ourselves in Grand Central in no time at all. We stood there, in the middle of a busy new york afternoon, took in the atmosphere, the spectacle that was grand central terminal….then realised we’d forgot to book a hotel room. My dad frantically phoned numerous hotels, all of which seemed to re-direct him to an Indian fone operator with very little english who could only say three words, “No rooms, sorry”. As he sunk into one of his infamous black dispares, where the whole world seems to cave in around him, I calmly picked up the hotel directory, picked a hotel at random, politely asked if they had any rooms and was told to wait a moment…after a short wait I could hear the phone reconnect…
“Hello” I answered
“Sorry no rooms” I heard
Damn it!
After a couple more attempts, I finally managed to book a room, a little pricey but better than a central park bench! We checked in, had a quick nap and got ready for a night on the town.

We walked around the streets heading south for an hour, we then flagged down a cab in true new york fashion (standing in the street with my arm out) and asked for little italy. As we stepped out of the taxi we stepped into a carnival like atmosphere. The streets were buzzing with people, restaraunts, music and laughter, we soaked it up a little and chose a quaint little ‘joint’, no not a spliff joint…a restaurant idiot, to eat at. A proper italian joint, italian waiters, italian menu’s, men playing violins next to the tables, waiters arguing with chefs…what a great place. Great, that was , until we got the food! Of all the joints in little italy, we must have picked the worst! The tomato sauce smelt like vomit, the steak had more fat than meat on it, the list of faults was huge. We left most of it and decided heading to bed was the best idea.

Sunday came and we did the tourist thing, we walked around for a few hours, had a tour on a boat, went to central park. After hours of walking and a change of hotels (a disaster in itself, as we struggled to book anything over the internet using the internet TVs provided by the hotel…at one stage i got so frustrated i kicked the bed, not knowing it was solid wood under the mattress resulting in one very bruised toe, anyway…) we decided to eat somewhere very close, and it just so happened that very close was Times Square. An absoulte marvel! I wont go into detail to much, because you never get the real effect from other peoples words, you have to experience it for yourself. But I will say I’ve never seen anything like it!

Hopefully I’ll have some photos to show you within the next week to give you some idea, not that you havnt seen Times Square in nearly every film, TV programme or advert made in NY.

Monday came, and with it another early start! And what did we do with the few precious sleeping hours lost? We shopped….correction, Jen shopped, I was dragged around from every shop from Macy’s to Bloomingdales, from the ‘Manhattan Mall’ to H&M. Its ironic that I flew 5000 miles away to shop in the shoppers heaven that is Manhattan, where you can buy anything from anywhere, yet onlyI only managed to buy something from a shop thats in the next town over from bradford! Thats right, I got a nice little camp top from the famous H&M, the only difference is that I bought it in $$$! The only thing that got me through the day was the England game being shown in the Irish pub near our hotel. Good result as you all know, certainly brightened up my day…especially as I was sat near a load of Irish and Swiss folk who has united to form an anti england following in the corner. Upon returning to the hotel we decided to check out the prices of a broadway show, it wasn’t something I was particuarly interested in…but what the hell, makes me look more sophisticated. However, there was a turnup for the books and we were made an offer we couldn’t refuse, well…I could very easily have refused, however the next few days would have been unbareable for me had I not said yes. Jen and myself got all glammed up, best gear on sunglasses at nite..the full whack, we walked a few blocks south, entered Madison Square Garden (nope we dint go to see a basketball game) we found our seats and I found myself surrounded by a lot of gay men, what on earth were we doing here?
Seeing a Madonna concert, thats what! Yes sireee, I got dragged into seeing a Madonna concert, a $225 Madonna concert, thats $225 each to sit in a seat with a hole lot of gay men dancing with each other…and what was I wearing….my very camp top from H&M!

It was fair to say I fitted in a little bit too easily with the outfits on show at the concert

I’ve never held Jens hand so tite, nor kept my buttocks squeezed so tite either! Luckily I made it through the nite and thankfully no1 made it through me….and hell I’ll admit it, I had a good time too!

Tuesday came, today we did much of the same, sightseeing with the occasional bit of shopping involved. We saw the WTC site and payed our respects, I did this for the second time in a matter of months. We then walked over east and saw the brooklyn bridge. Then the highlight of the day came, we got a Cab Boat! A cab on water! It was great, the assistant let us go to the open top roof as we worked our way around the south of manhattan and up the Hudson River on the west side.

We had a bit of crack with him, saw the statue of libertaaay, the manhattan sky line and learned a bit more about the Big Apple. I even attempted a ‘Titanic’ pose on the front of the cab, you know what i mean? Arms aloft screaming I’m the king of the world? Well it wasnt very succesful, just as i let got of the railings we hit a wake from another boat…tossing me backwards into a load of chairs.

Wont be trying that again soon. We arrived alive and well back at the 84th pier. During the ride we had been told Greenwich village was a great place to find a restaurant. So we walked down to Greenwich village aloing the side of the hudson river, we then walked into the village, and up the main street. This street was a diverse mix of every ethnic group walking the streets of manhattan, latino’s, afro americans, chinese, europeans, engulfed in a very laid back climate…it seemed a million miles away from Times Square, literally! We had walked for over 2 hours and I was starting to get a bit of an appetite, so after much oohing and aaahing and fussing and fannying we flagged a cab and returned to times square. Luckily it was worth it and we found the greatest restaurant. Superb food, good service, nice decor, and relatively cheap for what was the meal of the trip.

Wednesday we made a quick trip up the empire state and then headed back to trumbull after loungin around in central park for a few hours! We checked into a nice cheap motel chilled out after clocking up enough walking miles in 4 days to have finished 3 marathons.

Thursday we lazed around on the beach and missed the england game due to the bar we went to watch the game deciding that it wasn’t a very important match, so they didn’t wana show it! We then went for a meal with my american family, which was nice.

Friday came and I said my farewells to my dad sis and jen…and then we hit the road to Wildwood, a very tacky, Brighton meets Soho kinda place in South Jersey….but thats another story! (plus the fact that anyone still reading this mammoth email will be ready to hunt me down and beat me if i dont finish it off soon)

Speak to you all very soon, to tell you how Wildwood and July 4th weekend went/goes!

Happy holidays and god bless america!


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