Wednesday 29 April 2009

A New York Tale: Part 1

Posing beast

So, there we were, 10am on a Monday about 3 weeks ago. I was nervous, excited and more than a little bit overwhelmed. New York! NEW YORK! It's a huge city and we were going to be there for 8 days. Two little English people with hopes and dreams and belief.

The journey out was relatively uneventful, except for the the unexpected joy of seeing two security guards at Schiphol Airport on segways! That quite literally made my day (it's the small things). The other highlight was this part of the safety guide on the aeroplane...

See? I said it was the small things.

Anyway, back to business. The flights out were perfect. Smoothest landings ever. Bizarre African food on the flight to JFK but plenty of free booze and we all know that that's all that matters. Even immigration was as easy as pie. We were off the plane, through immigration and had picked up our bags within 15 minutes. Perfect. A yellow taxi ride later and we got our first glimpse of that famous skyline. I think I speak for both of us when I say it was incredible! It took my breath away and continued to do so for the whole week. We got to the apartment at about 9pm and waited on the street to be let in. I should say at this point that the way we acquired our apartment for the week was a true internet triumph. The lovely Naomi from Rockstar Diaries was subletting her apartment for the month of April and we managed to snag ourselves a week! Blog power FTW.

So into the apartment we went, courtesy of one of Naomi's friends. It was a lovely little place. And by little I mean little. 440 square feet of pure Manhattan joy. It was absolutely perfect with a big American fridge stocked with water and chocolate. What more could one want after a 16 hour journey! It's a bit hazy due to tiredness but I think we literally crawled into bed as soon as we arrived before awakening at crazy o'clock (5am i think) to be completely overwhelmed by being in NYC!

The first morning was hilarious. We set off all excited in search of breakfast, only to find that nowhere was open. It was about 7am and we were in Harlem. An aborted attempt at grocery shopping later (we had the fear, ha!) and we were on our way to midtown. We walked the entire length of Central Park and it was incredible. C's obsession with the steam rising from the streets started there and then and continued unabated until he found the answer for it.

Our first Subway ride later (Hello Brooklyn, wasn't expecting to see you so soon) and we arrived at Battery Park. The one thing I really wanted to see while we were there was the Jewish Holocaust Museum and, as we were there over Passover, it was only open on our first day there. The subject matter was a little heavy for our first day but it was the most incredible museum I've ever been to and I'm so glad we managed to go. We followed that with a philly cheesesteak at Katz's Deli and a milkshake and a rootbeer float at a nearby diner. The first of many incredible meals.


We finished our first day in New York with dinner at Spice Market for C's birthday. This may make me sound incredibly girly and ridiculous but I felt just like I was in an episode of Sex and the City. The meal was the best I've ever had. By far. Vietnamese spring rolls and chicken wings with mango and lime to start, followed by short rib and noodles and crispy salt and pepper skate for main course. I can't even discuss how tender the meat was. The service was also impeccable and it was such a lovely evening.

To be continued...