Staten Island. I have heard about it for most of my life, mostly from baseball stories, but I really didn’t know anything about it. I had heard of the Staten Island Ferry and in the few trips to visit here, I had seen the giant sign spread across the South Seaport Terminal reading Staten Island Ferry. But that was the extent of my knowledge.
Jerry doesn’t want to leave any stone unturned and Joyce was game for a mission, so we were off. Staten Island, here we come!
We caught the R to Whitehall/ South Ferry (that’s subway talk). We ambled on down to the Ferry entering the terminal with a throng of tourists. There were a couple of thousand people lined up to board the boat. The Ferry is free. It costs nothing to take this trip to Staten Island.
The ferries are huge, double decker boats with an open area of seating inside. There are outer walkways circling both decks. Most of the people stood at the walkway railings or sat on the benches lining the walkways. Inside was virtually empty. The views of the New York City skyline were classic with the Freedom Tower of WTC standing above the skyscrapers of the financial district. Very iconic.
We pulled into the Staten Island port and disembarked. Our plans were to grab a bite to eat and then sightsee on Staten Island. When we got outside the terminal, we walked up a sidewalk to an intersection of a multi-lane freeway. Turning north, we hiked up to Schuyler Street, winding up in a “town” area. There were a few storefronts, most of which were closed. There was nothing there to see, nowhere to shop but there was some place to eat. A pizza by the slice joint, a taco diner that was closed, a Thai place that didn’t look appetizing and an expensive restaurant around the corner.
A local offered up his review of the options. The Pizza was lousy, the tacos were bad, he didn’t like Thai and the expensive place cost “way too much”. He suggested the food court at the Ferry terminal. We thanked him and moseyed on down the street. We ate at the expensive restaurant because we felt our options were limited and we were hungry.
After we ate, we wondered around the area a little and confirmed what we had already discovered. There is nothing on Staten Island to see or to do. There is nothing there, other than a Ferry terminal. Nothing.
On the way back across the bay to the City, it became apparent. The Ferry trip is all about making a photo-op for the Manhattan skyline. The Ferry ride was fun and the skyline view was incredible, but Staten Island? She’s not there!