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Sunrise in NYC

It’s a beautiful June morning in NYC!  No humidity, perfect 60 degree temp, and the horns aren’t honking yet!  Anyone who knows me well knows I love the mornings.

Why you ask?  It’s the feeling of a new start, the sun peaking over the tall buildings, the calmness before the hustle and bustle, the crisp air, the feeling as though you have the whole day to get things done and in your mind you know it’s going to happen, and lets not forget, the smell and taste of that morning brewed coffee.  There is nothing like going to a corner NYC mom and pops coffee shop where everyone’s on a first name basis!

Ah, the fresh start of a NYC morning.

What can top off a perfect morning – a bike ride!  It’s 5:45am and my alarm is going off.  That’s right, I’m not working right now and my alarm is going off!  The sun is rising, my husband is going to work soon and my 22 pound boss is about to get up.  I must get riding, asap!

I do my standard check of the tires, just to make sure I don’t get stranded in the projects with a flat, again!  Strap on my helmet, better safe than sorry in the city, and attach my water bottle.  Off I go!

It’s now 6am and the streets are relatively quiet, for NYC that is. The delivery trucks are making their rounds, the corner coffee shops already have anxious New Yorkers waiting for their morning pick-me-up, the early-to-rise dedicated runners are out and in the distance there is the sound of construction workers already hard at work.  There’s always a new building going up, coming down, or just being restored in the city.  As I continue to make my way along the East River on the Manhattan side, I hear the NYC anthem.  Two cop cars are whisking by and not too far behind is a fire truck.  One of the firemen looks my way and nods congenially.  I give him a friendly wave.  How can you not, they put their lives on the line each and every day for us.

On my rides I do my best thinking.  I love to think about life, my “to do’s”, contemplate a bunch of stuff, and take in the beauty of the city.  A person could live in NYC a lifetime and still not see it all.  I have been here 7, oh my gosh, 7 years now and it feels like I’ve just hit the icing.  And I have done a lot!

As I start to head over the Manhattan Bridge, I can see the sun peaking over the city.  I now have a picturesque view of the Manhattan and Brooklyn skylines.  The city that never sleeps seems so calm, the bridge has minimal traffic before the commuter rush, and I have as much free space to ride as I want.  There are 7 main bridges in NYC and I have cycled over 6 and they all have breathtaking views.

As I approach the top of the bridge, I look out over the East River.  The rising sun is glistening off the water, a ferry is passing peacefully under the bridge and the city seems so quiet.  I can’t help but stop for a moment and take-in the surreal feel.  I was looking at a restless city, yet it looked so calm from where I was standing.  I stood there for a couple minutes thinking about how lucky I am to be enjoying this moment and thinking about all the good things in life.

All of a sudden I feel the bridge start to vibrate, the N subway roared by me loaded with my fellow New Yorkers headed to work.  My calm moment passed.  I looked down at the time and realize my 2 foot boss was about to wake up!  Oh no, I had better get movin’, she doesn’t wait for anyone!

As I rode off I looked back over the water and thought, someday I’d like to share this spot with Madison and have similar moments together.  I hope that in time, I will be able to teach her the beauty in moments rather than things.

What is something that makes you feel happy?  I would love to hear about it!

Until next ride,


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  1. Dean (your hubby!) says:

    Amy – I am so proud of you and inspired by your passion for biking and finding life’s little treasures (like your observations of NYC during your morning rides). Our little 13 month old boss is very blessed to have an amazing mother like you and she will surely learn to enjoy the special moments and memories in life. I can see her riding over the bridges with mommy someday!
    Love you,

  2. Fran says:

    Of course I had to open it as soon as I got it! Aaaaahhh you’re taking me back to my NY home. I remember many a quiet easy NY morning. You forgot to mentione the smell of fresh bagels! I can’t wait to hear more adventures and so happy your riding again! I recently pulled out all of my NYC heels (I got caught in the closet pulling all my boxes out and I told Jord that I needed time to “visit with my shoes”, it’s nostalgic and something I need to do once in a while in this flip flop area I now call home).
    Keep the adventures coming! Missing you, Dean and Maddie and missing my NYC life!
    Heels up and God’s speed be with you as your ride!

    Love ya, Fran

    • Amy Fechner says:

      Fran! YOU were my morning friend! If I was ever ready to get up and head out, I knew I could always count on you to join me. Loved our morning coffee, brunches, talks and of course, lets not forget those bagels!!

      Just jewel-up those flip flops my city friend!

  3. Linda says:

    Fabulous- Feel like I am riding right with you as you travel through the streets of NY-great job!

  4. Cindy says:

    I love the line about teaching her beauty in moments not in things! I hope to do that for Bailey too. And of course one day her and Maddie having moments together. :) I think Madison has a perfect teacher! After the craziness of the work week I try really hard to get us outside and slowing down on the weekends. Summer makes that a little easier. Love you Sis! I can’t wait to read more!

  5. Sandy Pack says:

    Oh, Amy, what a wonderful idea to share your life in NYC! I loved reading your blog. I could picture myself riding right along with you, and you make the city seem so beautiful and alive! I look forward to more of your writings. From one teacher (retired) to another, your writing skills are excellent!! God bless you and your family.

    • Amy Fechner says:

      Thanks, Sandy! I’m sure you and Tom are living up retirement! Would love to see pics of your beautiful backyard. I’m envisioning your summer flowers in bloom!!

  6. Deb says:

    Good morning, Amy. WOW, you are an impressive writer! In fact, you were so descriptive I felt I was riding along side you in that crisp morning air taking in all the sights of the city!

    I too love the mornings, the air smells fresh, the birds are singing, and like you said it seems so quiet. I look at each morning as a new beginning.

    What makes me happy you ask? Seeing my beautiful grandson smile, holding him in my arms, feeling his sweet lips kiss mine and hearing him call my name, “Mahma!” I get the same feeling when I look at my daughter and see what a beautiful woman she has grown up to be…so loving, compassionate, generous and an incredible Mommy. Spending time with both of them lights my life and makes my hear glow. That’s what makes me the happiest!!!

    Love you and miss you! I look forward to reading more! Give Madison and Dean hugs. Blessings always.

  7. Lourdes says:

    Amy, I love it! Can’t wait to read the next one. I felt like I was riding with you. Remember when we used to go rollerblading? I just got a new bike and I gotta say reading your blog made me want to start riding it.
    Let’s see… what makes me happy? Lot’s of things make me happy, but probably seeing my children smile makes me the happiest.

    Love ya, Lourdes

    • Amy Fechner says:

      Our rollerblading days! What fun memories!

      Gear up Lourdes! Just think about our San Diego beach cruiser boardwalk rides : )

  8. Trace says:

    Great reading my friend. Makes me want to come visit you soon. I loved hearing about your morning rides. It’s a great way to get some “mommy time”
    Take care and looking forward to the next installment
    Of riding with Amy.

  9. Jenny S. says:

    You did it Amy! Your page is beautiful and your daily passages make me want to experience the city the way you do! Your positivity is contagious…can’t wait to read more:)

  10. mary says:

    Amy– Just so beautiful– love your new page– you are so inspirational. You also have some amazing pictures. Maddie and Dean are so very fortunate, as well as we all are who know you and love you. i will be commenting– so you go girl.

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