An All-Night Bike Ride Through New York City’s History

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My name is Ken Jackson and this course
is “The History of the City of New York” it’s ah– and it’s always attracted a few
hundred students. it’s a very famous class it’s one of the most famous at
Columbia so I thought it was definitely on the bucket list this is an experience that I could not possibly have had without Kenneth Jackson’s class. I guess
in terms of how its enriched my my experience with the history of New York,
you don’t really get a feel for history until you’ve been to a place or you’ve
actually experienced a place and and getting such an intimate connection with
these spaces that we’ve been discussing in class is just such a unique and
enriching experience On the right very soon is going to be Strawberry Fields which is the memorial that Yoko Ono gave for her husband John Lennon who was
murdered. It’s 72nd Street in Central Park West just off to our right, in a few
minutes we’ll go past Tavern on the green– this is an experience that they
will remember forever I mean the city at night is a magical thing and I mean they
will see things and then maybe they’ll study them but they’ll talk
about it they’ll remember it some of them may get married but we’ve got people who here tonight who wanted to go when they were students at Columbia and didn’t
make it and now they’re here I took the class 33 years ago when I was a junior at Columbia when Columbia was all male and and I wasn’t able to to take the
bike tour because I was working two jobs to work my way through college and my
daughter 33 years later is a junior at Columbia and she’s taking the class and
she asked me to join her on the trip so 33 years later I’m completing the course
of curriculum I also signed up for the course because my aunt and uncle met in this class 40 years ago and they’re like you have to take it if he’s still
teaching it and here I am the bike tour has been great I actually have not been biking the bike tour because my was broken when I got to the meeting
point tonight at Columbia so I started I met the group at 59th
Street after after the run after the bike part through Central Park and I
have been jogging so ever since riding a bike around New York is awesome
the way when we came through Central Park you get to see all the way down and
it’s like you come up this hill and you see the lights start to come up and it’s
crazy this building right here which looks
like an office building is not that’s wires used to be AT&T long lines built
building to them to Europe this is really like a once-in-a-lifetime
opportunity I don’t see myself ever being able to do this again I mean the
people if this is the last one I would definitely be thoroughly disappointed so
I hope there were definitely a few more I mean that the legacy needs to to
continue

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