I stumbled upon a series of historic colour photos and "borrowed" this one of Times Square, taken around the time I moved there, shows the first hotel I stayed in - The Claridge - the Hotel Astor (gone, now) and of course, the famous Camel billboard that literally blew smoke rings over Broadway & Seventh Avenue. Click the image to make bigger for better detail.
I'd like to remember those days as the "good old" ones, but that's too easy. The city was crime ridden; gangs were everywhere, and Hell's Kitchen lived up to it's name. The tenement apartments were for the most part seedy, drug and alcohol infested. Now many of those apartments today have been cleaned up and are renting to theatre folks for high prices, of course.
Still I loved the city for the 18 years I lived there. Central Park was my back yard and the Cloisters my solitude. But, as the saying goes; nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there. Not that I could afford it.
And so it goes.