Do you ever get so used to something amazing that you stop noticing just how incredible it is? I’ve lived in New York City for almost 14 years now and for most of them my daily commute has taken me through Grand Central Terminal in one way or another. And, while I’d like to pretend that I never tired of its incredible architecture, I know that’s not really true. Still, I’m happy to be reminded of it from time to time, and especially today as it celebrates its 100th birthday.
With an office adjacent to the terminal I would often find lost tourists on the surrounding corners, usually looking for Times Square. I’d give them the directions they were looking for, but not without a bit of unsolicited advice: Go inside and look up. The stars on the ceiling are incredible.
Sure, the Terminal has had its challenges over the years. Whether its brush with destruction in the ’70s or the efforts to clean and restore the stars inside, removing decades of cigarette smoke damage, the risks and rewards were both tremendous.
I’m a lucky guy who still gets to pass through most days and, yes, I do tend to follow my own advice and stop to look up at the stars every time.