Sign up with your email address to be the first to know about new products, VIP offers, blog features & more.

Tag Archives usa

3 Day Itinerary: What To Do In New York

In New York, Concrete Jungle where dreams are made of there’s nothing you cant do now that you’re in New York. Empire State of Mind- JAY-Z ft Alicia Keys.

Hahaha! Hella cheesy, I know. But I do feel like you can’t write or talk about New York, and not think of this famous song!

I adore New York City!

The streets of Manhattan give me childhood memories of Gossip Girl. The busyness, and the food. Everything! It’s a jungle with class!

For those bougie ones (like me) that love the fast pace movements of a city! Every single time I arrive in New York, I always wonder what it would be like to actually move there.

I visited New York for 3 days for my birthday in 2018, and was surprised at how much I got done by myself. New York is well known to be an expensive ciy! And to be honest with you I can agree and say that the accommodation is quite expensive!

For me I was very lucky to have a friend that lived in Manhattan at the time, so was able to reap the benefits of free accommodation!! Yeah me!!! If you have friends or family in New York I would suggest staying with them, because I hear even Airbnb’s are not that cheap!

Anyways, despite the expenses! New York can and still is an incredible city to visit. Below are 6 things you must do when you are in New York City!

Top 6 Things to Do in New York City

As my friends had to work – because annual leave/vacation days are terrible in America, I was able to explore the city on my own. I purchased a tour ticket for the day at a reasonable price and off I went solo. Here is what I got up too.

1. Empire State Building

The first place I headed to was the Empire State Building. The building has a roof height of 1,250 feet and stands a total of 1,454 feet tall. I wanted a couple of snaps at the top, and can say I was very impressed with how beautiful the city was from the top!

Visit Brooklyn Bridge

I then headed over to Brooklyn Bridge! This is an Instagrammable location and one not to be missed when in New York City.

Interesting Facts: The Brooklyn Bridge is a hybrid cable-stayed/suspension bridge in New York City. It connects the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Take a Ferry to The Statue of Liberty.

I then hopped on to a ferry. Be mindful of knowing the times of the ferries, I wouldn’t want you waiting around for ages. I was able to head over The Statue of Liberty! The ferry I was on got pretty close—another beautiful site to see.

statue of liberty in New York

While I was on the ferry I was able to learn that New York is divided into five administrative boroughs – Brooklyn, Queen, Manhattan, Staten Island and The Bronx. All these five boroughs were consolidated into a city in 1898.

Head over to Grand Central and reminisce on Gossip Girl

Haha! Grand Central Station will forever take me back to XoXo days when I was able to binge-watch Gossip Girl. While you are in New York, you might as well go and sit on the met steps.

Only real Gossip Girl fans will know what I am talking about.

Tour Central Park

The next day I woke up early to head over to Central Park for a stroll and some ice cream. Central Park is the fifth-largest park in New York City.

Do a photo shoot in Times Square

In the evening I headed over to Times Square! My friend has said it was better in the night, but I would still check out both!

There we have it. Have you ever considered travelling to New York City? Let me know if you’ve been before and what you got up too! And don’t forget to subscribe for more travel journals and tips!

6 THINGS TO DO IN NEW YORK CITY

Share this article

We need more speeches like that of Jesse Williams

Let’s face it, we have all experienced racism at some point in life – whether you are white, black, yellow or green.

Memories…

I remember so clearly as a young child growing up in a predominately white area; recall knocking on my friend’s door for him to come out and play. I could see that the TV was on but no one came to the door. To cut the story short, my friend came to me the following day at school to apologise and say that his brother hated black people and that’s why the door wasn’t answered. I was only 11 then and simply laughed it off. What else could I do?

This short story brings me to discuss The BET awards that happened last week. More and more events have become more politicised! Isn’t it just great? It goes with exactly what I’ve been saying- which is, everything is politics … (within reason of course) There is a sense of black politicians arising, standing and becoming more and more unapologetic. I wish I had the sense to do at that young age. So because of my failure to stand up for myself when I had the chance, I’ve decided to open up a new page of political entertainment. So do read on.

Last Sunday was the BET awards, which had a lot of shocking performances. Beyoncé (my queen) and Kendrick Lamar’s opening performances. Ushers performance “Don’t trump America”. There was an underlying message being clearly displayed here don’t you think?

Jesse Williams who plays Jackson in the famous series Grey’s Anatomy spoke with integrity, displaying facts calling out and stating that we are not alone.

I watched his speech more than once. When he won his humanitarian reward, his speech was more than powerful, it was political. It stood for the political movement of black lives matter and touched me when he said:

“What we’ve been doing is looking at the data and we know that police somehow manage to de-escalate, disarm, and not kill white people every day. So what’s going to happen is we are going to have equal rights and justice in our own country, or we will restructure their function in ours. …

Yesterday would have been young Tamir Rice’s 14th birthday. So I don’t want to hear any more about how far we’ve come when paid public servants can pull a drive-by on a 12-year-old playing alone in a park in broad daylight, killing him on television and then going home to make a sandwich. Tell Rekia Boyd how it’s so much better to live in 2012 than it is to live in 1612 or 1712. Tell that to Eric Garner. Tell that to Sandra Bland. Tell that to Darrien Hunt.”

He spoke up not just for the audience that stood up and clapped for everything he said but everyone of black skin (like myself) that still today fights the prejudice, discrimination and hatred of racism!

You don’t need me tell you he was right because you know that he was! It is about time that we unite and speak out for what is right! Using music to get the message out is just one of the ways we can do that. There, of course, needs to be more said and more done, we still have a long way to go and we can do it!

We, therefore, need more speeches like that of Jesse Williams.

Peace peace. Thank you, Debra. Thank you, BET. Thank you Nate Parker, Harry and Debbie Allen for participating in that {video}.

Before we get into it, I just want to say I brought my parents out tonight. I just want to thank them for being here, for teaching me to focus on comprehension over career, and that they make sure I learn what the schools were afraid to teach us. And also thank my amazing wife for changing my life.

Now, this award – this is not for me. This is for the real organizers all over the country – the activists, the civil rights attorneys, the struggling parents, the families, the teachers, the students that are realizing that a system built to divide and impoverish and destroy us cannot stand if we do.

It’s kind of basic mathematics – the more we learn about who we are and how we got here, the more we will mobilize.

Now, this is also in particular for the black women in particular who have spent their lifetimes dedicated to nurturing everyone before themselves. We can and will do better for you.

Now, what we’ve been doing is looking at the data and we know that police somehow manage to deescalate, disarm and not kill white people everyday. So what’s going to happen is we are going to have equal rights and justice in our own country or we will restructure their function and ours.

Now… I got more y’all – yesterday would have been young Tamir Rice’s 14th birthday so I don’t want to hear anymore about how far we’ve come when paid public servants can pull a drive-by on 12 year old playing alone in the park in broad daylight, killing him on television and then going home to make a sandwich. Tell Rekia Boyd how it’s so much better than it is to live in 2012 than it is to live in 1612 or 1712. Tell that to Eric Garner. Tell that to Sandra Bland. Tell that to Dorian Hunt.

Now the thing is, though, all of us in here getting money – that alone isn’t gonna stop this. Alright, now dedicating our lives, dedicating our lives to getting money just to give it right back for someone’s brand on our body when we spent centuries praying with brands on our bodies, and now we pray to get paid for brands on our bodies.

There has been no war that we have not fought and died on the front lines of. There has been no job we haven’t done. There is no tax they haven’t leveed against us – and we’ve paid all of them. But freedom is somehow always conditional here. “You’re free,” they keep telling us. But she would have been alive if she hadn’t acted so… free.

Now, freedom is always coming in the hereafter, but you know what, though, the hereafter is a hustle. We want it now.

And let’s get a couple things straight, just a little sidenote – the burden of the brutalized is not to comfort the bystander. That’s not our job, alright – stop with all that. If you have a critique for the resistance, for our resistance, then you better have an established record of critique of our oppression. If you have no interest, if you have no interest in equal rights for black people then do not make suggestions to those who do. Sit down.

We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, yo, and we’re done watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil – black gold, ghettoizing and demeaning our creations then stealing them, gentrifying our genius and then trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit. The thing is though… the thing is that just because we’re magic doesn’t mean we’re not real.

Thank you.

Racism is still live!

Share this article

FOR NOW, IN MY OPINION, “SLAVERY HAS NEVER BEEN ABOLISHED”!.

Such a bold statement: yet once you have read my article and watched this powerful documentary, you will most likely share the same opinion. In the light of Black History Month and with the American (USA) elections approaching, I recently decided to take some time out and watch a documentary called 13th (only shown on Netflix as far as I am aware – do correct me if I am wrong). One thing I did learn immediately was that Slavery was and has never been abolished – yes in my opinion.

Carry on reading why I believe slavery is still alive.

Director Ava DuVernay produced the documentary called 13th. It challenges and even dismantles the collective idea that we as a world believe in the word “progress”.

How does one define progress?

The 13th amendment: “Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States.”

What does this mean?

The definition above gives the assumption that American citizens are protected under the Constitution – yet when you watch this powerful documentary you begin to understand that really and truly, slavery was and has never been abolished in the USA! It has quite simply been amended to fit into the purpose of the people in charge of the so called free world.

A chilling fact is that the USA is home to 5% of the world’s population; yet 25% of the world’s prisoners are in the USA, with an even greater percentage either on probation or on parole! And guess what colour the vast majority of these prisoners, etc are? The percentage of black people, compared to their total population in the USA – men and the  poor in particular, who spend their lives in prison, on probation and on parole, was and is still horrendous. Simply put, the number and proportion of Black people imprisoned, on probation or on parole is higher than any other ethic group – even though Black people are less than 20% of the total population of the USA!  Some of the more damaging effects are that large numbers of households are headed by single women – resulting in even more children growing up without fathers or father-figures; thus creating the perfect storm for perpetuating more poverty, poor education, lack of upward social mobility and consequent future incineration and recidivism! To think that the numbers are continuously rising is extremely disturbing!

The Documentary

The documentary covers the inescapable and undeniable connections of the legal and political systems to the mass incarceration of black people. It goes far back to the time of slavery and up to where we are now – with civil rights for black people. While it’s fair to say that the system appear to have changed, with you begging to under the use of language like you learn that there hasn’t been any real change in that the essentials and spirit of the legal and political system are still very much the same – keeping black people as “criminals”, and in chains! Its only more complex now; but the historical examples of slavery are still happening today! You and I still live in an era of slavery!

13th goes deep into breaking it down as to why this still happens and what the benefits are to the community of captors. One word – and that is profit! Which is exactly what it was all about during the era of slavery. The present private prison system earns millions in profits for its shareholders, simply from the head count of prisoners. So, its in the interest of the managers, shareholders and other beneficiaries to lock up as many people as possible – be it Black, Hispanic or anyone else who doesn’t fit “the real American agenda! “

13th is not just a documentary, but a demand. It is demanding that we know what has happened and how much our world hasn’t changed. Like I said in my last article, black history month: what for? With the American election fast approaching (on Tuesday November 8, 2016), it doesn’t matter now who you vote for; the constitution and laws still stand!

Unfortunately, our history is still exactly the same, only now just a different use of language!

Share this article