Thursday, July 10, 2014

Keeping Warm in the Courthouse

Today was the Constitutional Law class's field-trip. We met up at eight and went to the New York City Courthouse to watch a criminal trial, The trial was about narcotics and I was excited to see how trial takes place. But first, we needed to make it through tight security. Security did not allow us to have any electronic devices in the building. I mean, they were stricter than TSA! I was a little upset, but only because the building was so pretty and I could not take pictures of it because my camera was apprehended. When class went to court, I noticed that the entire room was like a meat locker; freezing. It was hard to keep warm, but easy to listen to the trial. We listened to a detailed testimony about cocaine smuggling until technical difficulties delayed the hearing and we headed up to a judge's chambers.
The NYC courthouse. It is even bigger than it looks.

The judge we spoke with was very funny, smart, and inspiring. He told us his story: he was born in Puerto Rico and raised in inner-city New Jersey. He worked incredibly hard and got into Yale, then Harvard Law School. After, he became a lawyer until he was appointed as a federal district judge in New York two years ago, being recommended by multiple senators and President Obama himself. He answered all of the class's questions and more. What I liked most about the meeting was his genuine personality. Even though he could not answer some of our questions because of his obligations as a judge, he was still personable and able to connect to the class. I think his background helped connect to us all on that level. Something very inspiring he mentioned as well was how he donates to a foundation for disadvantaged minority teenagers stay on track in high schools in New Jersey. It was amazing that he never forgot about his roots even though he is so successful. Afterward, the class headed to Chinatown down the street for lunch.
The park in Chinatown
Chinatown itself
I feel as if I could spend a lifetime in New York and still never explore all of it. Chinatown itself is pretty big and was cool to walk through. For lunch, we ate at a restaurant with good, inexpensive food and I sat at a table with the professor Luke MacInnis and my classmates Ken, Yana, Justin, Sydney, Khadija, and Monica. Lunch was fun and it was a really great experience. The field-trip overall was fun and a good experience.

Tonight, I went to the Top of the Rock at sunset on an RA trip. Unfortunately, it was a bit overcast today, so the view was not how I expected it to be. Regardless, it was really cool to go to the top of a skyscraper (again). I liked how I could see the Empire State Building and see all of the buildings begin to light up as the sky became darker. Afterward, I went to Magnolia Bakery down the street from the Rockefeller Center. I had been there once before, but their sweets are so good, I just could not pass up the opportunity. The trip was fun and a nice end to an easy-going day. Tomorrow is the last day of class as well as the final debate. I am anxious because I cannot believe tomorrow is really the last day, and I want to finally win something in class. This is the final hurdle in a long race, I just can't believe I ran this fast.
Me being a typical tourist
The end of another day in beautiful NYC

1 comment:

  1. I find one of the most annoying things about NY is that it is so warm outside, but then you get inside and the air conditioning is up so high that after a few minutes you're freezing! The 9/11 museum was almost intolerably cold and I even spoke to a docent about it and he says he is always freezing cold in there. In the theaters, too, I often needed a sweater. So now I always carry a sweater and an umbrella for those unexpected downpours!

    Besides that, I also feel like this city has endless pockets of surprises! Every neighborhood is unique and the people come up with such unusual ways of expressing themselves; whether it is art in the subway stations, musicians in the parks or unique activities. Once I wandered into a spot in Central Park that has tango dancing every Saturday night! Endlessly fascinating!!