New Thing+ #3: The Stonewall Inn

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I have to admit that there aren’t many downsides to flying to New York for an overnight work trip. Especially when I’ve only visited the city once before (and that was only for a fleeting evening stay).

I made sure to make the most of my time there and found myself walking all over the bottom half of Manhattan. It was around 9pm when I finally made it to The Stonewall Inn.

It’s one of those larger-than-life places that have existed in my imagination ever since learning of its existence. In this case it really lives up to that; it’s crazy tiny.

You’d think that the place that birthed the Gay Rights movement would be grande. But no, it’s just a quaint looking exterior with a pretty average gay bar inside. It’s dark, the service is slow and the bar rum is a travesty.

But as I sat there surrounded by men winding down after work, college kids chatting in the corner and the older crowd enjoying a beer at the bar, I realized how perfect it was.

Not a single one of them was afraid. Or ashamed.

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New Thing+ #2: CN Tower EdgeWalk

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I desperately wanted to try the CN Tower EdgeWalk from the moment it was announced. However, the $175 price tag was a little rich for my blood at the time.

Luckily, my mother-in-law surprised me with tickets on my birthday earlier this year. So today I finally walked around the observation deck of the CN Tower, 356 meters above Toronto. In the rain, no less.

It is one of the most fantastic things I have ever done. And for a kid who used to always think twice about jumping off the diving board, I didn’t have a single problem up there.

I was a little trepidatious about the weather, but it was a blessing in disguise. I didn’t expect that I’d be at the same height of the rain clouds themselves. Watching them roll towards us and ultimately envelop us was an amazing feeling. Leaning out over the city I love and picking out each landmark with only a rope keeping me from plunging over the side was also pretty exhilarating to say the least.

Our guide, Allister was charming, funny and quite knowledgeable. He showed us the sights, got us hanging off the edge of the rails and recorded and photographed the entire event for posterity.

What a lucky son-of-a-bitch that guy is to get to go up there eight times a day.