a fuller life

adventures… eats… laughs… life

Conquering NYC…

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IMG_7498Every time I return to NYC, I remember how much I love that city… not the shiny, loud, seizure-inducing “for tourist” parts like Times Square where people are always trying to sell me something… but the gritty, dirty, parts with character… brick and stone and street art and uneven sidewalks and clever uses of space… restaurant options with no meat that aren’t salad.. friendly folks that give a shit despite living in a city that the rest of the world assumes gives no fucks. Every time I leave, I instantaneously start thinking about when it will be time to go back. And now with true friends in and around the city, it’s only going to get worse …

It was another drive to NY and spend a few days in the city on the cheap kind of trip… so we left Saturday immediately after I finished market (thanks for working around my schedule Sue and Tara), stopped to fill our bellies full of Chipotle and Starbucks in Portland, and then on to our hotel in NH for the night. Left early morning on Sunday, with a belly full of pancakes, to find us some outlet mall shopping in CT on the way (and food trucks… with cupcakes … but not the giant pile of food trucks further on in CT several lanes across the other side of the interstate by the water… boo).

IMG_7475Arrived in the city around 4:00pm after sitting in some traffic for a while, checked into the hotel (insert small snaffu here where there was one king bed for three people with no other rooms available in the hotel, no cots, etc. We sorted it for the following day, so it was all fine… and the staff there were all outstanding… Holiday Inn Express on 48th near 11th – recommend), parked the car, and chilled out for a bit. Found some food, met up with friends to see Chicago, and had some coffee (mmm tiramisu latte that we don’t have in Canada!!). Chicago is not my favourite. I had seen the movie ages ago so I had an idea of what it was about, but while I have an very active imagination, I just don’t get that one. Why are a bunch of ladies in jail all tarted up?  The point of the trip initially started out as getting Sue to NY to see Jennifer Nettles in Chicago, and we did that, so it’s all good. We even stuck around at the end so she could meet her. So I didn’t like the show (plot and performers), but mission accomplished. After a couple of long days, sleep was involved after this.

IMG_7481Monday we spent walking… a lot. We had some tasty vegan breakfast at Blossom du Jour, found a hot drink (since despite the sun, the wind was killer), and then spent the morning walking around Central Park. I’ve been to NYC numerous times and I still don’t think I’ve seen all the different parts of that park… but I’m getting close, I can feel it. We explored Strawberry Fields, Belvedere Castle, the pond, bridges, etc. More importantly, there’s not a sniff of snow there right now and some of the flowers were even blossoming, which was extra nice considering we’re still buried under it up here.

Met up with Michelle and Melissa in the afternoon and wandered off to find some food… hit a Greek place. Was fine, but not interesting enough to even remember the name, which is not like me at all. A pita with some roasted veg on top isn’t newsworthy.

IMG_7518Post eating, we headed back to Central Park to hang out some more – taking the long way around by Juliard and Lincoln Center to listen to some teenagers performing. Time was spent exploring around the Bethesda fountain and more importantly the amazing walkways near by where the acoustics are amazing. Listened to an opera singer and basked in the sun like lizards for a while, walked around some more, found more tiramisu latte, and then walked Melissa to school. Back to the hotel after that to chill for a bit, get our room sorted back out, and warm up.

PS: I conquered Central Park.

Thai food at Siri Thai after that for supper. Food was decent – I’ve had better and worse Thai – and the service was great (though they did bring us meat dumplings when we ordered veg ones and didn’t order any meat between the three of us). Early night.IMG_7555

Tuesday was spent walking some more. We had decided that Tuesday would be a good day for walking across the Brooklyn Bridge (awesome, since I have wanted to do that for a while). Found food, walked around, explored the NYC public library and this and that, and then met up with the gang for more adventures (hi Melissa, Mel, Dionne, Michelle!). Took the train to near the WTC memorial (thanks for the metro cards Al) and spent a few minutes around the fountains so others could take a look. I was a weepy mess last time I was there, so I hung off to the side and played official photographer for a group of incredibly friendly NYC cops.

Then go time! Walking the bridge was pretty awesome. I love bridges (it’s the lines and shadows and mechanics and my artsy fartsy side can’t get enough). The bridge is covered with stickers and locks and messages… and is the perfect places for using one’s selfie stick (you rock that selfie stick D!). For the record, it takes about 30 mins to walk across, with stopping… and stay the hell out of the bike lane!

PS: I conquered Brooklyn Bridge.

IMG_7558After all of our walking (and continuing on with the unintentional tour of Melissa’s scholastic history), it was definitely time for more eating… we found a Mexican place in Brooklyn (Gallito’s Kitchen) that had delicious guacamole and the other food was also good… but guacamole!! I could live on that stuff. Sketchy elevator to train platform after that and off to the hotel for a but so I could shower my friends with prezzies (well, maybe not shower… well definitely not since I brought KD for Paul and that shit is gross… but I would shower them if I could).

And then showtime! This time we went to see Kinky Boots… and unlike Chicago, it was so great. Fun sets, catchy songs, a cast that didn’t appear to be dialing it in. Really, really loved this one – highly recommend. Go see it!

We had to split up with Michelle and her niece after the show (bye Michelle, miss you), but the rest of us found beer. Thanks Melissa for driving into the city and not making us all have to work around train timetables! So we drank beer at Beer Culture and possibly stayed out too late since some people had to work in the morning and we had to make the 10 to 11 hour drive back home. But it was worth it. There may have also been pizza.

IMG_7580And then there was very little sleeping and a very long drive home. We made few, shorts stops on the way home and finally made it around 9pm. Thanks for taking care of our transportation needs Sue. Tara, I’ll think of some more questions for you. Team NY and team NJ – thanks for rescheduling your day-to-day to hang out with us!  Let’s do it again soon!

Michelle M – you were missed.

Ange out (back buried under the snow)

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