WALKING AROUND CASTLE CLINTON

This building, which defended New York before there was even a United States and during the War of 1812, sits in the middle of Battery Park.

It’s located right across the way from where tourists pick up the boat to go see Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty .

Many people know Castle Clinton as the place where one picks up and buys their ticket for the ferry.

But what many people don’t know that it was eventually named for New York governor , De Witt Clinton, and it protected New York City harbor from British invasion during the War of 1812.

After the war and before there was even an Ellis Island Immigration Center, this is where immigrants checked in when they came to New York City .

Right before you get to Castle Clinton, you’ll notice a statue simply titled “The Immigrants ”

It’s a tribute to those who risked and continue to risk their lives coming here for a better life.

As you enter the fort, no matter if it’s just to buy your tickets or just to kill time, take a look around you at this place .

It’s old and it really shows it.

I’ve visited other forts, such as Fort McHenry down in Baltimore and Fort Jay on Governor’s Island here in New York.

Neither of them are showing their age as much as Castle Clinton is.

There’s no wonder that this place is used mostly for buying tickets to see two if the country’s most important landmarks .

There are park rangers around as this is part of the United States National Park Service , but it’s sad to see the condition of a place that’s as much a part of New York history, as well as United States history .

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TAKING IN A PITTSBURGH PENGUINS HOCKEY GAME

T

he final stop on my 30 Plus Teams Tour of Pittsburgh was, what else?

Attending a sporting event.

This time because baseball season hadn’t started, and the football team, the Steelers had finished their season, I decided to see the team that just happens to be the defending hockey champions , the Pittsburgh Penguins .

It was the day after my birthday, the hotel is right next door, why not go?

No actually this is a 30 Plus Teams Tour and one the first things you do on a 30 Plus Teams Tour is check to see what teams are playing when you’ll be in the city.

I checked the schedule for the Penguins, found out that they would be playing the San Jose Sharks and called up a girlfriend who lived in the city and got us tickets for the game.

Penguins tickets are always hard to get because of the popularity of the team so I was really lucky to get these.

Word of advice from the Sports Diva, if you think tickets are too expensive on the team’s own website, try one of the second party dealers like Stub Hub, NBA ticket exchange, NHL Ticket exchange or even Vivid Seats .

Don’t worry if the name on the ticket isn’t yours.

More than likely, it’s a season ticket holder who for some reason or another doesn’t want to or can’t attend the game.

The night of game there was a lot of snow, and it was 25 degrees, but since my hotel was right next door, no worries .

As I was just getting over being sick you’d better believe that I was dressed warmly, even though I still was dressed like the sports team apparel fashionista that I am .

This arena used to be known as the Consol Energy Arena, but as with most sports arenas these days, when a company goes out of business and a new company takes over, they have the right to change the name of the arena to whatever they want , no matter how really silly the name sounds.

The arena is now known as the Pittsburgh Paints Arena , and our seats are in the 200 section.

That may seem high, but compared to other hockey arenas in the United States and Canada , it really isn’t .

We can see the ice, the flags of the United States and Canada and the five championship banners hanging from the rafters.

What you can’t see from your seat on the ice, just look up at the big scoreboard.

You’ll see everything there , including graffics urging you to make some noise .

As a New Yorker, I find this kind of funny.

You don’t need to tell us to get loud or make some noise at a sporting event or any where else.

It’s in the DNA, I guess.

I had been to a Penguins game a few times but this time I really noticed just how reserved and quiet the fans were.

The team does have a mascot, Iceburgh, who gets the fans hyped up with his antics and drum beating, and of course , fans scream out every once and awhile , “Let’s Go Pens!”

But once again, it wasn’t with the excitement and passion that I’ve heard at other arenas, like New Jersey, Philadelphia and Boston, let alone in Toronto at a Blue Jays baseball game .

Could it be that because the team has been doing well thst Penguins fans have been really spoiled by their team?

I don’t know .

I had a good time at the game as the Penguins won, but it didn’t feel like a sports atmosphere.

It felt more like being at a boring concert with people sitting on their hands waiting for something to happen .

Sorry Pittsburgh , I expected better from you when taking in Pittsburgh Penguins hockey game .

GREYHOUND BUS BLUES

It’s 10:45pm and do you know where your bus to Pittsburgh is?

It’s the night before my birthday and I’m standing in line at Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York waiting for the 11pm bus to the city on The Three Rivers, Pittsburgh .

The blue and grey bus with the Greyhound dog on it is standing at the gate, waiting for passengers .

So why aren’t we boarding ?

I haven’t been to Pittsburgh in two years and I’m really wicked excited about spending my birthday there with a friend .

If that wasn’t nerve wracking enough, we’ve been told that we have to wait for another bus because the bus that’s at the gate isn’t working right.

No, this isn’t happening .

Are we for real right now?

This isn’t the way I wanted my 30 Plus Teams Tour of Pittsburgh to begin.

Finally, after 11:15pm, it was time to board and because I’m a “senior”, I get to sit right behind the driver.

The bus isn’t crowded and I get my own seat, right behind the driver.

I’m on my way to a little birthday “turnup” and a 30 Plus Teams Tour.

# winning

WHAT’S IN MY SUITCASE?

The last time I did a post like this was in the summer of last year.

I was doing  a  30  Plus  Teams  Tour  of  one of  my  favorite  cities ,  Baltimore, Maryland . 

This time I’m  getting ready to go on  another 30 Plus  Teams  Tour . 

I’m  going to the city on the Three Rivers, Pittsburgh ,  Pennsylvania . 

More on my adventures  in the Steel  City in upcoming posts . 

Right now, it’s  all about what’s  going  in my suitcase . 

The last time I took a small backpack . 

I’m  staying for three days ,  but  a small backpack isn’t  going to cut it.

Not only is it going to be my birthday when I arrive, but after all  this is a 30  Plus  Teams  Tour ,  so you just know a sporting  event  is just waiting to happen, and yes, the Sports Diva  is going to be there, God willing . 

Besides the hair products ,  unmentionables ,  and toiletries , let’s  see just what else is going in my suitcase . 

Sneakers from Payless Shoe Stores  and boots from Macy’s ,  cause it may snow in Da Burg ! 

Yeah ,  I’ve  gotta bundle up. Temperatures  are supposed to be in the 30 ‘ s. Coat from Marshalls .

Robe from my late aunt and pajamas  are from Primark  Store in Boston . 

Black jacket from thrift shop , gloves from Rainbow Shops ,  and of course my stuff animals, Jorge, Aaron ,  and Piglet MUST come along for the ride.

Unfortunately ,  these guys have to come along for the ride too.

Jewelry , socks, and leggings  from the  Rainbow  Shops, blue sweater ftom a thrift shop.

Sweater from Rainbow Shops ,  bag from Payless  Shoe  Stores ,  scarf a gift from my cousin ,  makeup bag also from Rainbow  Shops, jewelry a Christmas  gift.

My City of Pittsburgh  shirt, a gift from a friend  who lives there and Pittsburgh  Penguins  hockey  shirt from the Pittsburgh  Penguins store.

Grey shirt from Uniqlo  Store and shirt from Penguins  store. This is the player’s  name that happens  to  be  on the back of the shirt in the above picture .  As he is one of my favorite  players on the team, you’d  better believe  this shirt is going to  be  in my suitcase .  Being the Team   Sports Apparel Fashionista that I  am ,  I will be  ROCKING this shirt at the game.

There’s  what’s  going to be in my suitcase this time.

What goes in your suitcase when you go away?

Let me know and as usual ,  thanks for liking and following  my  blog . 

BE CAREFUL  WHAT YOU WISH FOR.

I’m looking forward  to  to my birthday  and my next 30 Plus  Teams  Tour . 

I should  be  really excited to be taking my first trip to  anywhere in 2018.

Instead, I’ve  got another nagging  medical  problem . 

I’ve  got a massive  toothache  that won’t  seem to go away.

I should  make a trip to the dentist ,  but no, instead I’m  self medicating myself with the following  things:

Gargling with warm salty water.

Taking Motrin like it’s  candy, not pills  that I can get addicted  to.

Taking Orajel, which is a dental product here in the United States  that people  take when you can’t  make it to or don’t  want  to  go to  the  dentist.

In my case, I don’t want to see the dentist . 

I don’t  like them.

It’s  gotten so bad that for the past two nights, now three if you count  today, I can’t  sleep on my right side, because  it hurts so badly.

Now, compared to what some other bloggers are suffering  from ,  this toothache is a minor thing.

If you’ve  ever had a toothache, you know that they’re  the worst.

Which brings me to the title  of  this  blog.

Be careful  what you  wish for.

No, I didn’t  wish for a really bad toothache  that would prevent  me from sleeping  on my right side . 

Nor did I wish to be really sick during Christmas  and New Year’s Weekends.

There’s  an American  football  championship  game on and I  can’t  even enjoy it because  I just want to lie down and stop the throbbing that’s  going on in my mouth.

What I wished for really badly was to be older when I was a little  girl.

I prayed that the good Lord would protect me and watch over me.

He has all through every illness that I’ve  gone through no matter if it was my Hysterectomy ,  my mini stroke, the sarcoidosis  that I suffer from  and even the heart attack  that I had when I was  16.

In the United States   with our lack of health care ,  seniors are basically  a gold mine for doctors and hospitals.

They know that we have insurance so they make appointments  for us whether we need to see them or not or even to prescribe  more medication  for us.

When you wake up in the morning ,  the only snap, crackle, and pop that you should be hearing should be coming from your cereal ,  not your legs or any other  part of  your body.

I am grateful  to  be  at the age that I am now, but I do remember  the  times that I would tell my parents ,  sister and brother ,  who were much older than me, how much I couldn’t  wait to  get  older.

‘Don’t  rush  it  you’ve  got  time’, my sister  would tell me.

I didn’t  understand  what she meant then as I couldn’t  wait to get older.

I might have been  a teenager  or in my 20 ‘ s and couldn’t  wait to  be oh so much older.

Don’t  get me  wrong ,  I’m  blessed  to  be  the  age that  I  am  now, but I  never realized  what happens  when you get  older.

If you get sick, it doesn’t  last a few days ,  try more like a week  or longer.

Doctors want to see you so they can tell you not what you really have, but something  that you DON’T  have and they’ll  prescribe some medication  that your insurance  only pays a part of.

Looking back now, my late sister’s  words  ring true.

‘Don’t  rush it.’

For those of you who were like me, in my 20’s, who can’t   wait to be older ,  the Sports Diva  has a piece of  advice  for you.

Don’t  rush it.

Be careful  what you wish for .