I was dropped off in front of my folks apartment building where I was instantly hit with the feeling of being peered down upon by the concrete giants towering over me. Up the elevator and down the hall brought me to their door where I was finally able to sit down and relax in comfort. Exploring their apartment while they were making their way home from the show, revealed a cute, comfortable, and compact home just perfect for the weekend.
The next morning dawned clear and cool so mom and I strapped on our walkin' shoes and headed to Central Park. I had no idea that #1 they were blocks from the park, and #2 that it is so large! We only walked a few blocks of it before having to turn around to go back and get ready for the day but seeing it made me happy that those living in concrete jungles have protected green spaces like that.
After Central Park we all got dressed for the day and set out to the subway. Pushing my father in his wheelchair because of his bum knee certainly made for a good workout while I was there, but I'm still paying for it ;) So anyways, we made it to the subway and caught a train to Ground Zero. What an awe inspiring area. Seeing what is being built in it's place and how far it has progressed was awesome. The church/chapel across the street that became a source of comfort and security for all of the workers and volunteers brought tears to my eyes. It was very humbling and I'm glad I got to see it first hand.
Lunch at the Amish Market then a subway ride to our next stop for the Staten Island Ferry to go see the "Big Green Lady", as I called her *laugh* was next. That was a refreshing change of pace to ride the ferry to Staten Island and back even though it was raining outside. It was pretty cloudy across Ellis Island and Jersey, so the pictures don't do the ol' gal justice, but she was pretty impressive to see regardless.
After our jam packed morning, we pushed dad back to the subway and back up the street to the apartment to rest up for my first real Broadway show; "Priscilla, Queen of the Desert". IT WAS AWESOME!!! I can't even begin to put into words how fierce, stunning, awesome, and entertaining this show was. I was thoroughly in love with "Felicia" by the end of the night and my glitter T-strap heels were *just* the shoe for the event. I highly recommend you go see this show, or rent the movie. Awesome, awesome, awesome. :)
Saturday morning dawned sunny and warm and I had a date with Physique57. I've been working out with these dvd's for quite a while now and I figured since there was a studio not far from their apartment that I would try a "live" class! I was super stoked about the opportunity, and while it did make my muscles shake, taking the live class reiterated to me that I am *so* not a live class girl. I much prefer my dvd's at home in my room by myself where I can work up a good sweat without lots of people around or an instructor moving my body in ways it won't move. I was glad I took the class but probably could have slept in instead *laugh*.
Anyways, after that we all had a date with a theater legend, Mr. Tony Walton. In case you didn't know, my dad's kind of a big deal in the theater world and is writing a book about Mr. Walton which is why they are in New York right now. So we moseyed over to Tony's impressive apartment in a grand old apartment building where I got to meet the legend, along with three of his friends;
and the other "Tony's".
Mr. Walton was an incredibly kind and warm man and I enjoyed listening to his stories as he and my dad chatted.
After our date with a theater legend, we had a quick lunch at a neighborhood eatery then mom took me to the grocery store. *Honest moment here...* This experience reinforced to me that I can't ever live in a big city like NYC. That grocery store really pushed me to my limit. I feel I move pretty quickly around our grocery store but I move at a snails pace compared to the New Yorkers with their little half baskets zipping around. I can't count the number of people that I probably ticked off as I got in their way trying to maneuver through the close packed aisles. I think this is also where my exhaustion level peaked. We'd already had a full morning of maneuvering the streets and subway with dad and his chair, then through the grocery store, then walking the groceries home down the street to the apartment, up the elevator and down the hall to put them away. I was worn out by the time we were done but wanted to go to the art fair @ Lincoln Center so off mom and I went.
Whew. We should've stayed at the apartment instead. We got over to Lincoln Center and it became pretty apparent to me pretty quickly that I was fading...*fast*. Mom generously realized this when I didn't want to do any shopping and quickly took me home so I could take a nap before the Mary Poppins show that evening. Second trip into Times Square that evening, and that was more than enough. The crush of people is ridiculous and the feeling of being hemmed in by tall concrete giants is a touch overwhelming for this midwest, open sky kind of girl. A little souvenir shopping and a long walk back through the mass of people brought us to Mary Poppins. Unfortunately for Mary she did not capture my attention like Priscilla did, but it was still a good show.
Sunday morning we went to the High Line which is a garden walk-way if you will. From what mom and dad told me it used to be an elevated train, went defunct, then the city wanted to tear it down and some citizens bought it instead and transformed it into a nice walkway with sunning benches, a water area for kids, native/wild grasses & plants, and a shaded tunnel area to get out of the sun. We dropped dad off and went walking around the Garment District, which was also the Meat packing district? Not sure, I get confused. Anways, we walked around past all the big wig fashion stores (Diane Von Furstenburg, Alexander McQueen, etc, etc) and I quickly realized that not only were these things not my style at all, but *way* out of my price range. I'll admit I got a touch irritated because I was bit by the shopping bug and it wasn't being appeased so we went and picked up dad and pushed our way *back* to the subway (oh my back is aching just remembering *laugh*) to go back Uptown to the street fair off of 86th street.
looking at all the booths while mom and dad enjoyed some lunch and watched the people trying on straw hats. (Blog forthcoming) I picked up four dresses, four necklaces, two pairs of earrings, and had some fantastic sweet potato fries. We made our way back to the apartment (via cab this time) to rest up for dinner at dad's favorite restaurant in Greenwich (sp?) Village. Fabulous food in a quaint little restaurant rounded out the day then a victory lap on the subway finished up the evening.
Monday morning mom and I walked along a different side of Central Park to 5th avenue to see the Plaza Hotel, St. Paul (or maybe it was Patrick)'s cathedral, Rockefeller square and the like. After about an hour or so I had to give u. I was hot, my back was crunched, and I had fully reached my saturation point with all the people so I pleaded with mom to go back to the apartment. A short run through another grocery store then the drugstore where we bought some Tiger Balm patches and back to the apartment we went. I plastered all 5 of those suckers on, made myself a nice little bed on the floor and was promptly asleep.
After a jam-packed and turbulent flight, we touched down in KC right before they shut down the airport and diverted all remaining flights to Saint Louis. *Thank you to our former Navy pilot who "beat the storm" to get us to KC!* Tim was waiting for me in the terminal and it was so nice to see his smiling face. I couldn't stop smiling the whole way home as I looked up at the wide open sky and the trees rushing by on the highway. Buck and Lilly joyously welcomed me back into the fold and I think I've finally recovered from my whirlwind trip.
Thanks a million to my folks for flying me out there and entertaining me for the weekend. I had a great time and will come again to visit...but not live. I'm a midwest girl at heart. Love ya!