The Grand Central Station in New York

The Grand Central Station is iconic of New York. A movie or book only has to show or mention it to establish its setting.

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It is as classical as The Oculus is modernistic.

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The terminal clock speaks of its character and reminds one of pre-digital times.

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Though it was built more than a hundred years ago and has undergone renovations, it still serves thousands of commuters daily and is visited by over 20 million people every year.

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The eagle on the corner roof is one of the remaining iron eagles, which have a story of their own.

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The Grand Central Station is quintessential New York and reminds us of things that last.

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The Oculus in New York

The Oculus, located at the World Trade Center complex in New York, is part of the rebuilding and re-development of the site after 9/11.

It is a transportation hub, and has been dubbed the most expensive train station in the world.

Nevertheless, a lot of thought went into its architectural design. It really is quite interesting both inside and out, but more impressive from the inside.

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It makes great use of natural lighting. The soaring “ribs” and play of light gives it an otherworldly feel. Seems much bigger than it really is.

To me, the futuristic design is a good complement, if counterpoint, to the Grand Central station.

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Is it a bird, a plane, or a dinosaur? Santiago Calatrava, its Spanish designer, said it resembles a bird released from a child’s hand. Others see a kind of dinosaur. Whatever your interpretation, it successfully stands out surrounded by the glass buildings in the area.

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The rebuilding continues on the World Trade Center site.

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The Oculus will be part of this developing hub. Perhaps controversial, but to me a symbol of the spirit of the city that will always rise above challenges that come its way.

Inside the Temple of Heaven

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(Beijing, China. The Hall of Prayer for Good Harvests peeks in the distance.)

In ancient times, the Emperor of China would move from the Forbidden City into the Temple complex and personally pray to Heaven for good harvest.

The Emperor was regarded as the Son of Heaven, who administered earthly matters on behalf of heavenly authority.

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Mystery

The 200-Year-Old Cemetery Turned Paco Park

The Paco Park in Manila was originally built as a cemetery, started in 1807 during Spanish colonial times.

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The cemetery was designed as a circle, surrounded by thick adobe walls, the top of which have become pathways for promenades.

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It features a chapel, itself round in design.

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Today it is a public park and a popular venue for weddings.


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Balance and Symmetry at Taipa Village, Macau

Taipa Village is one of the few places in Macau where one can see an authentic slice of this former Portuguese colony. Though casinos are sprouting in the main city, Taipa Village has been preserved for a step back in time.

I like this vantage point where the old is mixed with the new, it almost looks like a collage.

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Just a few steps away and one can enjoy history preserved. East and west co-exist. This is where the locals go.

 


More information about Taipa Village here.

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Tower Bridge Looking out to the Tower of London

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London has been through a lot lately. But it is a historic city that has withstood more than this, not just this century but in centuries past.

I like its cosmopolitan character yet steeped in tradition. It looks back at the past yet moves forward.

The Bridge and Tower are icons, one speaking of tradition and history, the other of technology and progress.

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