The sun shone brilliantly through the tulips and they radiated an ultra-intense color. I basked in the sun on a not-too-hot afternoon. The CNN sign showed 46 °F and there was a gentle breeze. I didn’t need a jacket; it was one of the rare times I sat in the sun to soak up the light. The Traffic hummed, horns blared, taxis whizzed around, and Columbus witnessed it all. That is, the statue of Christopher Columbus, perched atop its 75 foot granite column, anchored the spot.
Sometimes I just like to sit in the middle of traffic. Where better to do so than Columbus Circle? Maybe, like a wheel from its hub, the city radiates from this spot. So many types congregate here, like pigeons in a park.
It’s a great place for people-watching. I’ve seen:
• An African man with a drum, tapping it slowly in no discernable rhythm
• Japanese anti-nuclear protesters, asking people to sign petitions
• Silver-clad “spacemen” strolling through, on their way to Central Park
• Persistent skateboarders, grinding on the statue’s steps, inexpertly
• Ballet dancers, one wearing a tutu and the other tuxedo-clad, dancing their way across
• American (!) tourists led by a red-vested tour guide
A webcam records Columbus Circle night and day. I found it at http://earthcam.com/usa/newyork/columbuscircle//?cam=columbus_circle.
The fountain water wasn’t dancing that day. Pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters glittered on the bottom of the pools in the brilliantly sparkling water. Pigeons landed, people chatted on phones, coffees were sipped, eyes looked up. Columbus gazed over his dominion, the gateway to midtown.