Getting to Svalbard: 9/11 Memorial and Longyearbyen

My trip to Svalbard starting very early. As if typical for me, I opted to stay up packing, cleaning, and organizing before I left for the airport. The taxi arrived at 3:45 am and we went on to pick up two friends who were also going on the trip before heading to the airport.

Our flight left Austin at 6 am which put us in Newark around mid morning. We had an 8-hour layover, so most of the group (about 20) decided to head into Manhattan to pass the time instead of being cooped up in the airport.

The train ride to Penn Station really took me back to my Philly days, train conductor and all. I had been a LONG time since I was in NYC, much less near the touristy bits like Times Square. The place was buzzing with late-summer tourists. The group I was with opted for lunch at a nearby pub we stumbled upon followed by a trip to the World Trade Center Memorial.


Continue reading