Good afternoon from New York on the day before Thanksgiving.
The extremely blustery weather we've had for the past few days vanished overnight, and was replaced by a beautifully sunshiny day.
Perfect for a walk across Central Park.
Although not many folks appear in these scenes, I saw hundreds upon hundreds of locals and tourists enjoying the sights at a relaxed pace.
As you can see, even with the recent windy days, there are still plenty of leaves on the trees.
The Park's many underpasses and overpasses provide all sorts of vantage points. I liked this picture showing pathways leading downhill.
I'm also showing you all this view because it includes a cute little dog. Dogs were also having a fine day, playing with newly found sticks and rustling around in fallen leaves.
I've shown you this part of the Park many times. It is called Dog Hill, and is great for sledding when snow finally arrives. Today it was a great canvas for colors and shadow shows.
After taking care of my errand on the Upper East Side, I waited at the bus stop to catch the 79th Street crosstown bus, knowing that bus route would no doubt be altered to allow afternoon and overnight preparations on and around 79th Street and Central Park West for tomorrow's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
I got off the 79th Street bus at the corner of West 86th Street and Columbus Avenue, and walked downtown past the streets that were being cleared of parked cars, and where lots of parade-related barricades were being set up.
Prior to 9/11, a neighborhood tradition, on the eve of Thanksgiving, involved heading over to the area around the Museum of Natural History to watch the inflating of giant balloons that would grace the parade. However, nowadays, that tradition has become much more security aware, with lots of police and stringent rules about how to get a brief close up view of the balloons as a very long queue of children and adults slowly snakes its way along a specified path.
It is not as much fun as the old timey version that was quite laissez faire.
In these photographs you are looking east across Columbus Avenue. The trees behind the police department tow trucks are on the grounds of the Museum of Natural History.
This view is not only a vanishing point exercise, but also a westward view of West 79th Street, indicating how even more barricades have been set up, probably for herding this evening's crowds hoping for a view of the balloons.
One more view, which may or may not be a more clear depiction of the line up of barriers.
Unusually shops along Columbus Avenue close up by about mid-afternoon, on Thanksgiving Eve. The area really does become Parade Staging HQ.
I thought you might like to see one of the Museum's turrets, and one of the holiday snowflakes that have been hung along the Avenue. And, another police vehicle.
Shady West 78th Street has been closed to all but residents. In the distance, you might be able to see a large balloon. Besides lots of police and sanitation department personnel, I also saw many Macy's employees with clipboards, directing proceedings in a friendly way.
Parents, grandparents, children and grandchildren were beginning to gather around, hoping that at this early part of the afternoon, they just might be able to experience a less regimented viewing as part of their family traditions.
One last view.
I am hoping that you all have a fabulous Thanksgiving and that you have enjoyed this collection of city views. I am indeed thankful to be part of the blog community and additionally glad to have recently joined Instagram. Thank you all for your visits here and there, and for taking the time to leave comments. Happy Thanksgiving!