Friday, April 17, 2015
NEW YORK CITY!!!! (say it like the salsa commercial for full effect)
My Kels wanted to go see Aladdin….Aladdin was only playing in New York City…..so we planned a trip to New York City. Luckily, Aladdin was not the only great thing to see in NYC…..NYC also had MIRANDA!!! Our morning started out beautiful…..which is always a good sign……and I am all about a sign.
Our trip to the airport (which included Miranda because she was on her way back after her spring break) was great…we got to the airport and of course I parked as far as possible from the terminal….it's just how I roll….but a cool dude in a golf cart pulled up just as we were getting out of the truck and shuttled us to the terminal… (another good sign)….I highly recommend Jet Blue out of Jacksonville. Our view of NYC from the plane was really pretty….the excitement was building with each passing second…..
Upon arrival to JFK airport we decided to take the metro to the subway station….ONLY because we had Miranda with us……we would not have been that brave by ourselves….not so much afraid of the subway and all that it entails (I have seen the movies) but because we did not want to get lost in our first hour in the big city. And I must say that while Miranda has always impressed me, her metro and subway maneuvers totally blew my mind….this girl will forever be a Flo-Yorker to me.
We followed her and her rolling suitcase (you know the ones that roll every which way…way cool…Kels and I just had our old school roll the one way cases….but we will be making that purchase in the near future if this travel thing of ours keeps going) through the airport to the metro that took us to the subway station….we went down….down…..down……yes it was creepy to me…..and there was an odor…..but I kept an open mind….and my eye on Miranda and Kels……we got in line to get a subway card….it was hard for me to concentrate because I am such a people watcher….and I had already been told to “not make eye contact” by someone who knew the NYC ropes….as I got our card and we made our way through the turnstile thingy (that resembled something from a prison) there was a minor altercation behind us….evidently some people were going to attempt to pick pocket but were stopped…yeah, this happened right behind us….I am not too worried about pickpockets…I have been to Europe…we learned a few tricks to stay safe there and we were applying them here…Miranda did not even flinch or slow down…so we followed suit….we would do as she does….
The metro reminded me of the shuttle that takes you from terminal to terminal at the larger airports….we stood…..holding on….because it was rough to start and stop….people were coming and going…everything was fast paced…then there was the subway….WOW…Miranda was reading the signs to get us to the right one we jumped on and off one and onto the next one….we all had suitcases and there were gonna be a lot of stairs so Miranda says y’all come in this elevator and we can avoid all the stairs… a couple of other people got on too….it was really small and the minute we entered my spidey senses went through the roof…..the smell was …really bad….way worse than before…..way to “fresh” if you get my meaning….the walls and floor looked….well really ummmm……lived in…..I told Kels not to lean on them just because….the people in with us actually had to cover their noses until we got out….we were not that affected by it but we were really glad to get out….I can only imagine if the CSI people use the black light thingy in there…it would have glowed like 900 aliens had been massacred in there (alien blood glows in the dark, don’t it ?!?!)….I would not consider this a good sign….(but all signs are not good)….
We survived the elevator and journeyed to our last subway…we sat down and I kept telling myself to “not make eye contact”…….you have no idea how hard that is for me….when you are literally sitting across from people….the dude across from me was eating some chips…very loudly….after one small bag he proceeded to eat yet another enjoying every single bite….then he gets up to check the subway stop schedule and definitely invaded the lady sitting under the schedule’s private space….he got really close….so close I thought they were travelling together but later found out they were not….he sat down and then took out his wallet and started to thumb through his money….and there was quite a bit of it…and he made sure he was being seen doing it….he was young, by no means “thuggy”, but strange no less…..the no eye contact thing was really becoming a problem for me by now so I decided to watch the homeless guy at the other end eat his lunch and talk to himself…I felt much less awkward watching him from the corner of my eye….no full on eye contact…
We got to our stop and we headed back up, up, up, it is really something how far down the subway runs…..as soon as we hit the top of the escalator it was like a whole new world….like we had left a place of hellish nature to enter a heavenly place….it was Grand Central Station….it was like a very highly sophisticated shopping mall…lots of glitz and glamour and bright lights….I felt the need to go and tell someone about what was going on just down that escalator……but realized….they already knew……..
Grand Central Station was huge, and busy, and beautiful. Lots of stuff going on….
Miranda showed us a spot where you could stand on both sides of the area and whisper into the wall and the other person could hear it…….she and Kels tried it and it worked. This was really cool considering how loud it was in this place.
Our first meal in NYC….Shake Shack…YUMMY! It did not disappoint.
After our lunch we were on our own…Miranda made her way back to her apartment and we were to get a ride to our hotel. So we headed out to hail a taxi, and got in the taxi line. As soon as we did a random guy comes up and asks if we want a private car…..WHAT THE WORLD???? DO I WANT A PRIVATE CAR??? WHERE IS MIRANDA WHEN I NEED HER????….so after calming myself I asked how much (like I know what TOO MUCH would be) and he seemed reasonable so I said yes….he led us to a safe enough looking vehicle and we told the driver the address. As he was putting our suitcases in the trunk I quickly scanned the whole inside of that trunk for blood stains, kicked out taillights, and claw marks…I watch ALL the CSI and crime shows…..and I am very aware of my surroundings. It looked okay so as we climbed in the back seat I scanned the doors for visible locks and door handles…again with the TV shows…I felt good about the whole ride…it was fast with a lot of horn beeping and moving in and out of traffic…I did not close my eyes….well you can imagine why I did not close my eyes….but before you knew it we were at our hotel all safe and sound….our door man met us with a smile and a kind word (another good sign)….I had already used my weekly quota of “Lord, have mercy on my soul” –s….but I knew HE was still taking care of us. Welcome to the Big Apple….what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas…oh yeah, we were in NYC…whatever…same thing goes!!!
We stayed at the Edison Hotel….it was an old hotel that had been recently refurbished. We stayed on the 20th floor and had an okay view….the room was big and nice and clean……so we were fine with it….I found it on line and just was not sure what to expect…..
This was the view from the hallway window….very pretty….you could see the Hudson Bay from here……our elevator button board…no number 13 (a good sign) ….and this was the view from our window at night….if you pressed your forehead to the window and looked out and to the left you could see Times Square….we were THAT CLOSE!!!!!
Our first NYC selfie…..I have a rule….I only do selfies with my girl…….she is really good at them…
Okay, so it takes a while to get a good one….but I kind of like them all…
My “OMG we are in NYC/Vanna White audition pose”……..talk about “country done come to town”….I couldn’t wait until they got a load of me :)
yeah…..we are kind of silly…….but you only die once so we are gonna make the most of this living every day thing!!!
Our supper was Grimaldi’s…and it was delicious!!! Miranda took us on a walk and to get GELATO…definitely a “have to get” while in the big city.
We got a tour of Miranda’s apartment and enjoyed the sights and sounds of NYC at night. Our taxi ride back was slow (traffic), quiet (anti-social), and expensive….why were all these people still up and awake and out and about…when I suggested to Kels that we go “clubbing” she says “Mom, its Thursday night and we do not even know where we are”…..good thing I have her to keep me straight!!
The next morning I decided to take a walk and I got myself a bagel and cream cheese, another “have to get”…it was really good. The sights were great…I loved to walk and people watch (BUT NO EYE CONTACT)….
I am pretty sure this was a real minion…but I did not let him know I took his picture…(that costs money)….so I was sneaky….and had a good zoom on my camera….Times Square was amazing and I could not wait to see it at night…..
We took another taxi to meet Miranda (we were still not brave enough to try the subway on our own yet)…..the taxi fares were money well spent…and my girl looks good riding in a taxi anyways…
We walked to Chelsea Market….a very cool place….neat shops….the market itself was amazing. It had cases and cases of fresh food….meats, seafood, pasta, fruits and veggies….by the prices it was obvious that it was not where everyone shopped….but was really cool to see….I never see octopus and squid in the seafood case at Winn Dixie (and I am glad of that fact)……
Miranda just blended right in…looked just like she indeed lived there….but as for Kels and myself…well….it was kind of obvious…we were fish out of water….but it did not stop us from having fun!!
My Kels…you can take the girl out of the country and take her to the big city but she still gonna wear her boots…..only because it was too cold for her flip flops…..
On our way to brunch at the Cafeteria it started to SNOW!!! Yes the first day of spring and it snowed.
This reminded me of Green Acres……”Dahling, I love you but give me Park Avenue”
note to self…..”Farm livin is the life for me”
Our brunch was so delicious…. Kels had waffles (with bacon of course) and I had croissant french toast…..so so yummy….and it was a place Miranda had not been yet and she loved it and said she would go back….WIN-WIN!!
Our next stop was the top of this hotel…Miranda said there was a beautiful view…..only she had not seen it in the snow before…..at least not this year yet….so that was beautiful….and the snow in my girls hair was quite beautiful too…..
We knew it would be cold…..but did not expect the snow….it was a welcomed surprise….we did not have hats but we did have good coats and our boots were keeping our feet warm and dry….
We walked to and through Central Park…..WOW….it was really beautiful….cold…….but beautiful!!!
Kels and I in front of Grand Central Station….IN THE SNOW!!!
We headed back to the hotel to warm up and get ready for our big night!!! I was mid-wardrobe change, got distracted by my phone (imagine that) Kels says “Mom, how long you gonna stand there with your pants undone all thug-like?”….I never thought I would hear Mom and thug in the same sentence….NYC must be rubbing off on me…..NOT! …..but we were having FUN. And we were about to leave…. but first let us take a selfie :)
Supper…..okay Dinner (supper is southern, I am sure they eat dinner in NYC) was at the Statler Grille….so many courses….so much good food….we used a groupon so all the courses were included….so was wine and dessert….yes, WINE…. I am no tee-totaler…but I am no wine drinker either (see earlier blog post about the wine tasting excursion Pug and I took on our Canadian cruise)…..so when he brought the glasses, looked at me, and said “will you do the honors?”…..I froze for .02 seconds and then my tv watching kicked in…he poured, I swirled, took a whiff, a small taste, and gave him a head nod ( desperately trying to not make that “I just ate something really nasty”” face)…I am sure it was really good wine and I sipped occasionally just to blend in….but before long I could not hide the face anymore and Kels said it was okay to not drink it…..whew…..so happy to get that okay…complete and total waste of good grapes if you ask me…
After dinner we strolled the streets of NYC….we walked through the largest Macys in the world, and a news reporter spotted Miranda wearing open toed shoes in the snow and had to stop and interview her….we got to see it in person….way cool….Miranda is such a fashionista and always looks so put together….so glad someone finally noticed and singled her out…they were doing a story on the weather and who was and was not ready for Spring….
Finally……it was time……we were off to see ALADDIN….ON BROADWAY……IN NYC…..
The Amsterdam Theater was beautiful……our seats were perfect and the show was spectacular…..best ever…..we highly recommend it to everyone….the Genie was phenomenal…..he deserves every award available. if you do decide to go….you must get tickets early….we almost waited too late…my Kels called me one night and said they were sold out….we already had our plane tickets and our hotel room….so I get on the phone, this is not my thing, I usually get someone else to make reservations but I did it for this trip so I looked up a number and called. The guy was really nice but told me all they had left were 269.00 tickets…..WHAT THE WHAT???? He kept looking and when I was just about to bite the expensive bullet and get them he said that 3 had just come available (that was not just a good sign…..that was God)….we got tickets….at a much better price…..and all was good in my world!!! On a funny side note he needed my e-mail address and it has the word cowgirl in it....I always tell people not to laugh at my address and added this time that I was NOT a stripper.....he laughed really loud and said he was going to make a note of that by my address,,,,glad there are some people left in this world with a sense of humor (even if it is kind of sick like mine), It is hard to see but that is Miranda and Kels under the Aladdin sign….
We always go for ice cream after….well after everything….so what do you do in NYC after an amazing show….you get frozen hot chocolate….from Serendipity’s……tasted just like it sounds and was delicious!
After getting back to our room….all by ourselves….on the subway ....with instructions from Miranda…..only 3 stops…..no eye contact…. we took a walk to Times Square…it was amazing….so beautiful…..so busy……all those lights….I am so glad we took the time to take that stroll….
Our time was short but we did so much….our last morning we took our last taxi ride to meet Miranda who took us for her favorite hot chocolate.
Our last few pictures of the big city…..
We took a shuttle back to the airport….this was on the wall of the van……when I took the picture I left out the best part….there was a tree shaped pine smelling air freshener……..hanging…….. right beside it…..I am sure that an occurrence at some time or another had happened to produce the need for THIS!!! But I feel no need to know exactly what that occurrence was……..only in NYC….
This trip…..the subway…..the people….the noise……the traffic……here is my time to vent!!!
Our room was very nice and clean…..but you know those toilet paper holders that hook to the wall and you just slide the roll onto the arm….well every time I used it the roll would fall off into the garbage can……THAT was the worst thing that happened in NYC…
Miranda was AMAZINGLY AWESOME and we would never want to do NYC without her....she really made our trip so fun, interesting, and was the reason we were able to do so much in so little time. We would definitely go back as long as she is our tour guide!!!
It was very different for these two country girls…..but it was good to visit and see how other people live….we saw things that shocked us……revolted us…..excited us…..delighted us…..you name a feeling and we experienced it…..it is that way everywhere….I can only imagine the looks on some of their faces if I took them to the farm and showed them how we preg check cows, cut bull calves, or repair a prolapse cow……or if they stepped in a pile of fresh cow poop….I would really love for some of them to see the sunrises and sunsets I get to see or a newborn baby calf running in a green pasture of tender grass…..our world is beautiful, everywhere, and in many ways…..I am just really glad God chose to put me here instead of there…..it was a trip of a lifetime….but home sweet home is still the best!!!
Kels asked “Mama, did you have fun…did you get your money’s worth?”
You can put a price on a plane ticket, show tickets, hotel rooms, taxi fares, subway rides, and FOOD……
You cannot put a price on THAT mmmmmmmm! that comes from a bite of the best cheeseburger & fries, gelato, waffle, or frozen hot chocolate…..THAT whooooooge smile that comes as soon as Aladdin sings “I can show you the world” or THAT laugh when Genie starts singing and dancing to “shake it off” or those other Disney songs that he sings in the play..….THAT moment when your “child” snuggles over and puts her head on your shoulder and says for the 900th time “thank you Mama”…..THAT giggle when the snow keeps hitting her in the face, covering her hair, and she cannot believe it is really happening….THAT moment when the plane is taking off and you have your eyes closed (because you are having a little conversation with Jesus) and you feel the sweetest hand you have ever held gently grab yours and suddenly, it’s all good :)
So yeah, I had big fun and I got way more than my moneys worth!! Life is short…..live it EVERY DAY!!! Do the things that make you happy…..you will be glad you did………
at 7:42 PM