Of the many things people know about Dundee, you may be surprised to hear of some of its connections to New York.
My brother and I booked a city break to New York for this week and it was the first time we had visited the city in 17 years.
We had meant to go back for my 21st birthday but Covid prevented us from going.
I was intrigued to learn more about Dundee’s connections with New York during my visit there and it’s fair to say I did learn a few.
We went on holiday to The Big Apple during the week of the New York City Marathon.
We visited Central Park on the Friday, and preparations were in place for the event on Sunday.
The finish line was open to all and many tourists had their photos taken with it and walked through.
What I didn’t initially realise was it was on the anniversary of fellow Dundonian Liz McColgan winning the marathon back in 1991.
It was only when I saw a post from her daughter, Eilish McColgan, that I found out that it was on the same day I had walked through the same finish line.
Interestingly enough, Central Park is also home to one of four of John Steell’s Robert Burns monuments, with the others being in London, Dunedin, and of course, Dundee.
The New York monument was erected two weeks before the one in Dundee which is located in the city’s Albert Square, opposite the DC Thomson headquarters.
Central Park is also home to two Camperdown elm trees, which were first discovered in Dundee back in the 1830s.
There is also a village called Dundee in the New York state with a population of 1,700 people.
It is a good few hours away from the city itself, but the story behind the naming is something I find to rather intriguing.
Originally it was called Plainview but was later renamed Dundee after a native from our city moved to the settlement and suggested it when the residents were seeking a name change.
One of the more poignant moments of my trip was visiting the September 11 Memorial and Museum as I wanted to pay my respects to Derek Sword, a Dundonian who worked in the World Trade Centre.
It was on that day Derek lost his life. He was only 29 years old.
I might have not known Derek but I always think about him whenever I am reminded of the atrocity of what happened that day.
His memory is well and truly alive and the tribute to him and others whose lives were cut very short at the memorial is very touching.
New York really is a great place and to know there are several connections Dundee has to the city that never sleeps is really interesting.
I look forward to returning sometime in the near future, but for now, I look forward to going back to my favourite place, home, in Dundee.