When I first started to write this entry, I had the idea of giving all the details of the trip. My father is a great writer......and when he travels he often posts what we call "epistles": daily details of the trip. This is what I thought to do at first....but realized that I did not have the patience to write that much nitty-gritty. Also, I am fairly certain that you as a reader do not REALLY care about the nittgh-gritty. However, I have opted for the MOST EXCELLENT highlights from my trip to New York with my parents.
This was my first real trip to New York. I have been to New Jersey loads of times for work, seen Manhattan from the glory of Newark, and been into the city twice for work functions....but never been to enjoy it or spend some time. Additionally (thanks to my wonderful father) this was my first trip FIRST CLASS. My dad cannot sit on an airplane for a long flight like the one to New York in coach, so when he booked the tickets, they were all first class! I most certainly did not fit in while wearing grubby yoga pants, sweatshirt, and fuzzy boots.....but it was sooooo nice!
I flew out from Seattle and met my parents in Minneapolis, and we flew all together to Newark. There were plans to spend the total 6 hours on a plane crocheting.....but they were well thwarted. Of course on the second leg I spent the time gabbing with my mother.....but what was irritating was the first leg. I simply got caught up watching the in-flight movie. That doesn't sound so bad....except that the movie was My Sisters Keeper. If any airline executive reads this: DO NOT SHOW SAD MOVIES ON A FLIGHT! Seriously....stick with comedy - NO ONE wants to cry with strangers while trapped in a hurtling piece of tin! But it was a good movie.....
We spent 4 full days in the city - taking the train in from Jersey City each day. Three of those days were in mid-town near Time Square, and one day was down toward the East Village and NYU. I am not sure if I really expected the city to be different than what I got.....but what I found was that I adored this city. There is a great energy.....maybe because there is no STOP to the people. People are working and moving all the time.
We saw 4 shows while we were there: Chicago, Rock of Ages, Blue Man Group, and Mamma Mia. The Mamma Mia tickets for Wednesday night were a last minute surprise from my dad - he couldn't wait for tickets either. All of our seats were amazing! Blue Man Group was the only show we did not sit in the balcony - and all our balcony seats were right in the middle and only 1 or 2 rows back. STELLAR! My favorite show had to be Rock of Ages. Not because it was so much better....but because I was surprised with the story, talent, and I have not laughed that hard in so long. I had never heard of the show, and my parents thought it was about the history of rock and roll.......and it turns out to be you typical boy-meets-girl-boy-loses-girl story. It just so happens to be set on the Sunset Strip in the early '80's and using rock music like Styx, Journey, Pat Benetar, etc. Completely hilarious.
The places we ate were terrific too. We went to places without much planning or reference.....and loved all of them. We ate at Ellens Stardust Diner, Burbon Street, Beccos, The Chinatown Brasserie, and The Shake Shack. I came back with an extra 5 pounds as a souvenier! And I just have to say......get the 'Shroom Burger at the Shack. YUM! And at Becco's, get the 3 pasta special side dish with whatever you order......it's pasta Heaven!
Speaking of The Shake Shack, on our way over to get lunch there I had my first brush with fame on the trip. We crossed the street with Christine Baranski. The next night, and the China Brasserie, we had dinner at a table next to John Goodman. I was totally fine until I heard John Goodman speak....and then I got all giggly. Because he is just so funny and delightful.
This was one of the best trips I have had in a long time! Just my folks and I spending the time.....no big rush and no real plans. Just hanging out and being goofy all together. My parents are so much fun!
The best thing I brought back from this trip....next to awesome memories....was the decision to go back to school. After the Blue Man Group show, I stopped into the Starbucks at Astor Place in the east village to get coffee. The idea of going back to school had been rattling in my head (lightly) for a while......and standing there in a crowd of NYU students I was struck by a thunderbolt. Now is the time.....do it now.....go back to school. So I am!
Wonder what will be the epiphany on the next trip we take?