Tuesday, January 15, 2008

More tales of NY

It was a wonderful weekend and then Monday came.  We started off the day in the best way. We had bagels!  Well actually we each had a bialy and cream cheese.  Bagels on the Square had been recommended to us by one of the vendors at the Bust show. She was right!  It was sooo yummy, well priced and right near a lovely park.  We ate in the park with a pigeon or two, grabbed a copy of the paper and tried to think about our day.  

For some reason we had decided to venture north and see a few of the more touristy sites.  It sounded like a great idea, but maybe not so much.  The first stop was Bryant Park, the home of Fashion Week.  

There were lots of little shops or you might say kiosks all around, which is a great idea but the skating rink was the big attraction.  The weather was cold and just perfect for a visit to midtown.  We moved on to Radio City Music hall, which was packed with people waiting to see the Christmas Spectacular.  We weren't able to go in because of the event, so we made our way to NBC, the home of Conan and 30 Rock.  Secretly, I was hoping for a celebrity sighting, but no luck.  The NBC shop was big and crowded, but nothing really said "buy me".  
So then it was off to Rockerfeller Center!  I kind of wish we had gone at night so that the lights would be in full effect, but we didn't.  The tree seemed smaller in person and not very cheery, but at least we can say we've been there.  
Swarms of people were all around us at this point and everyone was taking pictures and looking for good vantage points.  We snapped a few ourselves and then made our way to Madison Ave.  
This is where Kent hailed his first cab!  It was a special moment and kind of scary.  The cab driver whisked us down the street like Godzilla was chasing us!  He was manic to say the least and we held on for dear life.  Our destination was 88th and the Guggenheim.  Unfortunately we didn't realize that the museum was undergoing a massive facelift and was covered by scaffolding.  We almost walked by it because it was unrecognizable.  Still, we went inside and got a taste of it.  We also scored a Lichtenstein poster, a Rothko calendar and a gift for a friend.  Heading out into the street again we got brave and bought a pretzel from a street vendor.  Ugh.  Worst choice ever! It was cold and tasteless and we were sad.  We stood between the museum and Central Park bummed about our pretzel and then somehow Kent stepped in poo.  Yes. Poo.
 It was funny and we laughed pretty hard about it.  We walked a little way and then caught a cab to Herald Square. 
The drive took us up 5th avenue and finally through Times Square.  I have to say that once again it's not all that impressive in the daylight.  In fact, it's actually a little sad.  All of the restaurants are big chains.  There was an Olive Garden, Planet Hollywood, Bubba Gumps and the like.  Not very NY.  Clearly it's a tourist trap and I'm glad we were only driving through.  The traffic was insane and so we asked the cab driver to let us out sooner than we had planned.  That proved to be a mistake.  We were tired, hungry and a little cranky.  The mood in midtown was so different from what we had experienced in the Village and Soho.  I thought that the garment district would be a thrill, but it just wasn't and I swear every single person we passed was smoking.  I almost had a panic attack at one point because I couldn't get a breath of clean air.  We wanted to find lunch and fast, we walked and walked in search of a Gray's Papaya and when we finally found it, we realized there was no seating.  Totally demoralized, we made our way to the nearest subway and headed back to the familiarity of 14th st. This was the best choice ever, because after walking a block or two we found a haven.  Yes!  Fish and Chips!  It was a massive score.  Nothing in the world could have been better at that moment than delicious, hot fish and chips and ice cold cokes.  We were slowly returning to normal and breathing more easily.  On Greenwich Ave between 12th and 13th stands the loverly "A Salt and Battery" right next to "Tea and Sympathy" in the heart of "Little Brittain".  Thank you God!  It was as comforting as could be and has to be one of my favorite memories of the trip.  

Monday evening was much better and I'll tell you about it in my next blog.


Martha Elaine Belden said...

woohoo! sounds like one whirlwind of a trip :)

fish and chips... mmmmmm!

Odelia said...

Great work.