Sunday, November 25, 2012

A little of this, a little of that...

I am not a very good blogger...I admit that to myself. I still think about things all the time and want to write about them.  So I'll keep going when the notion strikes me...

Some other highlights about New York which now seems like a year ago...

Walking miles and miles in the city, taking more subways than I ever have before, exploring more cool places like Harlem, Brooklyn, Chelsea, and SoHo.  We spent a glorious morning in the most beautiful guitar shop I have ever seen called Rudy's. There was a sweet salesman there named Gordon who helped me surprise my husband with a new guitar for his birthday. That was the most fun I have had in a long time....  Name what you are looking for in NYC and there is a specialty store that has it all crammed into a crazy small space... I can think of a store with just pickles, another just caviar (I don't care for either of those..). My favorite discovery of specialty stuff this summer had to be Jacques Torres Chocolates. He has a few shops peppered around the city, we visited the one at Rockefeller Center and the one in Brooklyn.  My niece was in the city on business and she joined us on the trek to Brooklyn.  We managed the multiple subway rides and the meandering into town to dine at Grimaldi's where we waited an hour and a half in line but holy cow was it worth it!! Best pizza I ever had and the cherry soda was a local bottler and it was the best I have ever had... Now onto the chocolate.  We found Jacques Torres' place and my husband ordered the yummiest hot chocolate ever made and I split an ice cream sandwich with my daughter.  Let me just tell you that I have dreams about that ice cream sandwich... it was made with two Jacques Torres chocolate chunk cookies and some store made salt caramel ice cream. My only regret was that as we were walking along back to our subway it started to rain and we were walking very fast and stuffing bites down as fast as we could...I wish I had just gotten drenched and eaten that thing a little more mouth is watering....

Okay, tube tops. New York is a mecca of fashion, of course, and if something is "in" or "trendy" it is in spades all around you and you suddenly think, wow long pearl strands must be "in" or lace tops etc.  I can vouch for seeing many things I had not noticed until it was everywhere in that city.  But not all styles are optimal for everyone....and maybe if you ride subways often and have a size triple H bustline you might rethink the trend in case you end up having to hold your hands over your head to hold onto something to not fall down in the subway and because it is so crowded and your bust is in the face (literally) of multiple strangers... um. anyway, the other memorable subway trips (and they are all memorable in some way) include the one with the strolling mariachi band, and another with the disgruntled citizen vocalizing and preaching LOUDLY, and most bizarre the man in the NYFD shirt who was seated and asleep and then rolled forward and bumped his head (hard!) on the floor of the subway. He woke up only briefly to reposition...

Now I think of all the areas in and around NYC that have suffered so much from the big storm and
wonder how in the world it will all recover.... I am grateful for the chance to explore that city the way we did.

I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving.  I have much to be grateful for...

Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Little bite of the Big Apple

A Little Bite of the Big Apple We are spending a nice chunk of our summer in New Jersey, which affords us many opportunities to venture into 'The City.' It's as if there is only one city in all the world. For many New Yorkers, I am sure this is how they feel. I am getting a passion for it myself... On our first trip, we decided to drive to Staten Island and take the ferry. Everyone should make this trip at least once I have been told. Glenda the Good Garmin got us there and all was fine except that Staten Island is home to the worst drivers I have ever seen. The metric seems to be: the closer to The City, the more treacherous the driving. The parking area all around the port was under construction-something the GPS can't anticipate-and went around and around trying to figure out how and where to park. We finally followed a bus into the orange cone abyss only to find the lot full and with many sections roped off...We rolled down our window to ask an NYC construction worker what to do and I think he looked at our panicked faces and two kids in the back seat and he MOVED a traffic cone and made a space for us! I had to restrain myself from giving him Texas-sized bear hug....we did thank him profusely. We dashed down the ramps and up and down stairs and finally hopped on the Staten Island Ferry. Splashing by the Statue of Liberty, I could hear the poem in my head and it made my throat tighten up. As the breathtaking view of The City got closer I realized that the two buildings under construction, rising from within the midst of all the others, were the new towers. I felt the anvil of sadness the rest of the ferry ride. Once the ferry ride was over, we were off to the subway. We messed around Midtown most of the time, found a street fair(!), took the NBC Studios Tour and went to the Top of the Rock. Rockefeller Center is 63 floors high with an elevator that gets to the top in 45 seconds! The views were amazing and the weather exquisite - especially for July. We ate the best soul food on the planet at Sylvia's in Harlem. We made it back to the ferry with only two minutes to spare to catch the 9:30 back to Staten Island. The view of The City at night was a beautiful way to end our visit. The drive back to New Jersey was harrowing, as usual, but we made it. A few observations of the day: don't go to The City if you are claustrophobic; there are rats; subways are full of crazy people; I heard great live jazz, Irish and mariachi music in/on the subway; I heard so many different languages spoken I lost count; there was lots of honking at pedestrians who crossed against lights...they kind of asked for it...; no other city like it on the planet...I loved it! Coming soon...more in NYC, fashion observations and reasons not to wear tube tops...

Friday, July 6, 2012

Musings of this week:  The moonrise on the Fourth was as spectacular as the fireworks! I would have sworn it was the Great Pumpkin... I love to see the flags lining our sweet Main Street and the little citizens with ribbon-covered wagons and bikes, and everyone dressed in red, white and blue.  We are far from perfect, but I am so happy to live here. I thought a lot about when I was little and my dad would drive me to Fair Park in downtown Dallas.  We wouldn't go in the Cotton Bowl stadium where all the crowds were. We would park on a really scary street and watch the fireworks from our old Chevy Impala.  I, of course, would be in the front seat with my window rolled down, marveling at the display and not minding that I was sticking to the seat. The minute the finale started he would fire up the engine and we would take off for home. He just lived through his 91st Fourth of July.

Here is a little something I wrote this week:


Melting pot
Of individuals.
How does that work?

Citizen, can vote
Or not.
Do you feel power?

Has its place,
But US is better.
What is your declaration?

Fly a flag
And watch the sky.
Was gunpowder ever so beautiful?

Happy Independence Day,