Sunday, 27 September 2009

New York day 5: The Dakota & Strawberry Fields

I’m taking a look at the time stamp on my photographs to see what time I set out on my fifth day in New York and, um, it looks like it was only about noon!  I guess I was pretty tired from my very long day the day before.

My first stop was the Dakota which is an absolutely exquisite old apartment building built in 1884.  It can be found on the corner of 72nd Street and Central Park West.

Apart from being visually stunning, the Dakota is famous because it is where John Lennon was living in 1980 and he was killed in the 72nd Street entrance (pictured left above) on December 8 1980.  I stood by that entrance looking in and I got quite a chill now as I realised that was where he was shot.  I don’t remember much about that day as I was only 7 but I remember my mother being devastated and I remember not being able to fathom that such a thing could happen.  Yoko Ono still has an apartment in the building.

I then went across the road to Central Park to visit Strawberry Fields, the John Lennon memorial.

It took me a very, very long time to get the top picture.  There were so many people there and everybody wanted a photograph.  I’m not as shy to take photos with people in as I used to be but it just seemed that this was something you needed on its own.  It is an interesting atmosphere and not at all sombre; there were tour groups, John Lennon lookalike singers and people from all walks of life just milling around and trying to capture the moment.

I took a look out into the teardrop-shaped park and wondered if John would have liked to be memorialised here.  The park is pristine and it was easy to lose myself in its beauty and to feel peace for a moment as I was transported away from the bustling memorial behind me.  I think John would have liked it and I felt a great sense of calm and acceptance, happy in the knowledge that this memorial has done him justice.

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9 comments

  1. John Lennon is very much my favourite Beatle....I like the sound of the garden area.

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  2. I like your blog. I also like your photography. Most of all I like the layout and the way your posts look.

    And, thanks a ton for stopping and commenting at my blog Pick a Peck of Pixels.

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  3. Great straightforward photographs of Strawberry Field which show it at it's best very clearly.

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  4. @ Blessings Goddess: I was thinking about this - I don't think I have a favourite Beatle! Perhaps I was just too young. By the time I became consciously aware of them, the Beatles had already split up and became forever fused in my mind as one unit!

    @ Abe: Thank you!! I moved a couple of things around on the weekend and redesigned my header so it is very nice of you to say that!

    @ Liz: Thank you! Simple and straightforward are the mottos of my blogs!

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  5. I don't think I fully appreciated NYC when I was there. Time for a trip back with a different mindset...

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  6. when you were by strawberry fields did you by any chance run into scott. let me be more specific, scott, the cracked out hippie who plays crappy acoustic guitar twitches and drinks milk... he's a fun dude. haha.

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  7. So, you also went on peregrination... ;)

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  8. I am a life long Beatle fan and saw them in Chicago at Comiskey Park. I was a big Paul fan until they broke up. As they made their seperate ways, I followed each of them through the music and lives they then lead. I became much more a fan of George and John after that. I made a trip to New York in 2006 and spent time at the Dakota and Strawberry Fields (I think I may have even met Scott or someone like him) Your photos have brought back that time and I remember feeling the same as you did. That this was a place he would like to be and that it had a calm and peaceful almost ethereal feeling. Sorry this is so long, but this post really touched a place in my heart. Thanks so much for sharing. I love your blog and photos.

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  9. @ Little London: :) I think we all have cities and places we absolutely fall in love with and New York was it for me.

    @ Nomad: Hmmm. Perhaps it is self-preservation, perhaps it is snobbery but I tend to avoid people who look like cracked out hippies! Thanks for popping by and saying hi!

    @ GMG: You say the funniest things! I walked over 8 hours a day for 7 days solid, I would say I went on peregrination, yes!

    @ SheilaDee: That's amazing!!! I was watching a Beatles documentary the other day and wondering what it must be like to have attended one of those iconic concerts in the US! Thanks for visiting and commenting!

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