I finally rode the Roosevelt Island Tram for the first time. If you saw me at the station you would have thought I was a kid waiting in line at Disney World, not a NY local boarding public transportation. I’ve lived in this town for almost seven years and I still muster tourist-level excitement for NYC attractions. I refused to get on the tram that was full of people and about to leave the station. “No! We have to wait for the next one! I want the best view! I need the best seats!”
The Roosevelt Island Tramway connects the tiny residential and recreational island to the island Manhattan. The only other access is by subway. A couple of cables suspended north of the Queensboro Bridge is all it takes for this aerial tramway to fly across the East River. Flying across the East River is all it takes for me to flip out about how much I love this city. “This is so cool!”
“I wonder if it will be scary!”
“I’m going to take so many pictures!”
I apologize to anyone who took this tram with me. I was unabashedly obnoxious, spouting off insipid exclamations and running around the whole tram car to get different views. I suppose there’s a chance you found me endearing- the excitement was 100% genuine.
A little voice inside me said, “Again! Again!” I was strongly tempted to take the next tram bound for Roosevelt Island so I could get the view of that perspective. I resisted, “Who do you think I am, a tourist?” I squashed the little voice. “I’m a New Yorker! An easily excited and giddy New Yorker who’s still totally in love with this city…But a New Yorker just the same! I have shit to do, I don’t have time to take a trip back to Roosevelt Island just for the hell of it!” My feet were back on the ground of Manhattan.
If you live in NYC, do it- escape to Roosevelt Island. While suspended on a cable over a river may just find you suspend your jaded New Yorker tendencies. The cost is that of a subway ride: free with an unlimited Metrocard, $5 without. If you’re visiting the city, I highly recommend it too. This trip is not exactly a tourist cliché attraction and that makes it even more special.