Vantage point

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Sunrise at Brooklyn Bridge

The next time you are in New York City, do try this out if you are an early morning person like me. Well, to be honest, I didn't exactly wake up that early in the morning. My bus from State College got to Chinatown at 5:30 a.m. So I decided to walk over the Brooklyn Bridge.

Now I don't know if "Sunrise at Brooklyn Bridge" comes heavily recommended in Lonely Planet type guides, but I am guessing not, because even for a peak tourist season day like today, there were just a handful of obvious tourists. So when it comes to being a "something you can't miss according to the guide books", Sunrise at Brooklyn Bridge is no Rockefeller Centre.

But it ought to be. My camera is out of commission so I can not present photographic evidence to back this up, but it has to be among the best sunrise sights in the world. The eastern skyline behind Brooklyn and Queens turns almost completely orange-red. And the sun announces its arrival by lighting up the window panes of some buildings along the east river on the Lower East Side. As the sun gradually rises, the window-shine spreads, selectively illuminating buildings, tall and short, all along midtown, Greenwich Village, Little Italy, Chinatown. One of the brightest reflectors is of course the Empire State Building. Now if you are standing on the bridge, with your back towards Brooklyn, admiring the sun's holiday lights at play in Manhattan, don't forget to keep looking back at the actual sunrise and how divine it looks against the Manhattan Bridge and Brooklyn.

So far the window-lights will have been at play mainly to the right side. In a short while, you'll get the money shot. The sun's rays reflecting from the buildings in the financial district in Lower Manhattan. Now if you start walking on the bridge back towards Manhattan, the reflection travels with you, lighting up different buildings as you walk, changing your perspective.

It's just breath-taking!