This weekend J and I drove to New York City to meet A and have some adventures. J and I left my place at about 9am, and with only a few stops and traffic situations, made it to Kennedy airport in time to pick up A just after 1pm.
You can see here in J's face the same happiness we were all feeling at being together and starting the weekend.
As we were driving from the airport toward the hotel in SoHo, we saw some great views. There was this very gothic and spooky old cemetery that A loved.
Here she is, loving it :)
Also, there are indeed many many pigeons in New York. Here they are welcoming us to their home.
We got to the hotel and the very friendly people at the front desk told us we could park right out front until we got settled in, which we did. A stayed in to take a quick nap while J and I went to park and scout out the lay of the land. Parking turned out to be a bit of an adventure. We knew that parking was "right around the corner", but it turns out that "right around the corner" was the wrong way down a one way street. So we drove around. And around. And around. The GPS seemed to want to send us into the Holland Tunnel, and though I love New Jersey, NO. Finally, after J pulling a series of A-Team like moves in her CRV, we made it to the parking structure (which I forgot to post a picture of - it employed the use of vertical space to great effect). After that, we thought we deserved a bite to eat, and I was lucky enough to enjoy some fantastic New York pizza. With mushrooms.
After pizza, we tooled around for a bit more and then headed back to the hotel (The Hampton Inn, which I can certainly recommend) to chill with A, and our friend L who lives in NJ and was going to hang with us fo rthe evening. We planned out our evening, which included a quick drink at the bar downstairs, then heading the three blocks to City Winery to hear our friends' band play.
You guys, City Winery was fantastic. And I'm not just saying that because I flirted with all of our waiters and waitresses. The food was delicious, the service fantastic, and the room very cool.
Here's J's man D eating a teeny tiny burger.
And L nibbling some flatbread.
And J enjoying a glass from one of the FIVE BOTTLES of Proseco we had. In New York. FIVE.
The food looked something like this: There were olives and caramelized brussel sprouts and cheeses and braised shortribs and some other things and WOW. Yum. You should go to City Winery. Go now. Tell your boss you're sick and go. Take your child. They probably have milk.
So, this show was actually a showcase with four different bands, three before our good friends the Ryan Montbleau Band. The first two bands were delightful and they BOTH had accordions and I don't know if you know this but I kind of love the accordion. So score for me.
BUT. Colin Hay.
Do you remember the band Men at Work? Of course you do. He was the singer. He's solo and funny and wonderful. By the middle of his set I declared that we all had to have sex with him after the show and you know what? EVERYONE AGREED*. That's how good he was. People listened silently and took in his awesomeness. Colin Hay made me laugh so hard that I had to spit Proseco back into my glass so that I could breathe.
Among the things he said (and I'm paraphrasing. AND he has a Scottish accent):
"If you've got one song that's on a soundtrack for a movie and it's a hit, you might be wondering how much money you get. Well. It's not enough to retire on. But if you're thinking of re-doing your kitchen, you go right ahead. And if you're trying to decide between the real granite and the fake stuff? You can get the granite."
If people were reverent when Colin Hay was playing, they were excited and dancing when The Montbleau guys came on. I know we were having a great time.
J and D dancing and smiling. We were in the back so we had enough room to do some hippie twirling...
After the dancing and the eating and the drinking. And then even more drinking and the sitting at the bar resting and the deciding what to do next, we went to a bar called Toad Hall, which is so awesome because here at home we spend PLENTY of time at a bar called Toad. It was small. like Toad. There was a French restaurant next door from whom we got some pizza and we rested some more and planned to all do more stuff the next day. This is me, looking like I'm trying to get a good picture of us, but really I'm just trying to go to sleep on A's shoulder...
The next day was Sunday! And you know what you do on Sunday? Go to brunch. The place we went was near West 85th Street and Amsterdam and it was called something like "Cocktail Lounge" or "Terrific Place for Brunch". And you might notice from the sign that they have oysters. Which is NOT what I wanted to eat after a night of drinking.
What I wanted to eat was a caviar omelet, the best cinnamon toast in the universe, home fries (according to T, they're "the Sham-Wow of last night's debauchery"), and a grapefruit mimosa.
After that we went for a walk in Central Park. Sadly, it was too cold to play in the Diana Ross Playground :(
The buildings in New York, both in architecture and in volume, are awe-inspiring.
After Central Park we got a cab to the Museum of Modern Art.
There was so much cool stuff there. And also so many things that I never need to see again. And many many things that I could make with the meager art supplies I have at home right now. A white canvas. A black canvas. You know...
There was this very cool action piece that included two fans pointing at each other, and a circle of film/tape dancing aloft in the middle. Cooooooooool.
For dinner we hit up The Stage Delicatessen and had meaty meat sandwiched with extra meat and also pickles. They were gooooood.
We wound down the evening by walking to Time Square. We looked in some kitschy shops and stayed warm by getting some coffee at Starbucks.
Then we got to the Holiday Inn Express by the airport, talked, slept, took A to the airport, and came home. It was such a delightful weekend and New York was so good to us!**
*Please note. We did not actually have sex with Colin Hay. Don't believe him if he tells you we did.
**Dear New York City,
Thanks for that terrific but brief affair. I hope to see you again soon!