Wednesday, May 25, 2011
New York, Bullet-style
* Hauled our ass out of bed at 5am to make a two hour drive to Burlington Vermont and catch a 9:30 flight. We reached the border at 6:30 and there were no cars in line. Beautiful. Of course that meant we arrived too early so we were pissed we didn't sleep in more.
* My camera decided to stop working again so we relied on Serge's crappy iphone to take pics. Of course he left it in the room most of the time, the little turd. I really wished he'd had it at our night at Nobu, but I can at least steal a picture from their website to show you one of the items we had. It was raw sturgeon with ossetra caviar and I can't remember the genius sauce underneath. To. Die. For.
* We grabbed a cab from La Guardia. I couldn't quite figure out the guy's accent, but he kept muttering under his breath, "Shit," "Fuck," and my favorite, "fuckin bitch." We had the requisite three near accidents on the way, riding a taxi is always an adventure in New York.
* By noon we had checked in and were out walking the streets looking for some lunch. Our hotel was at the convergence of Chinatown and Little Italy. We ended up eating Mexican. (food, you ding-dong) Some guacamole and a taco plate and one Corona for Serge. Fifty bucks. Oh that's right, New York City is a money suck.
* Everywhere we went, we heard French being spoken. Both Quebecers and Frenchies from elsewhere had invaded the city it seemed.
* We then had a power nap before going out and roaming the city for cheap happy hour drinks. At Posh, all the drinks are half price from 4 - 9pm. Every time the bartender stated the price for us or other customers I laughed. Four dollar martinis? You can't get a fricking beer in Montreal for that let alone a martini.
* Then it was Priscilla Queen of the Desert time. Though I knew it had gotten mediocre reviews and it had been recommended that we liquor up before going (which we did quite nicely) it was one of the funnest broadway experiences I've had. I LOVED every minute of it. The camp, the costumes and the music were all so fun and the audience was on their feet at the end with thunderous applause. It might not be everyone's cup of tea, but we both really enjoyed it. For me, it's right up there with Wicked.
* Did we have more cocktails after that? Why yes, yes we did. As they say in French, we drank like a hole. And then we had that quintessential New York moment, eating a giant slice of pizza standing up.
* This made the following morning um, challenging. Also, there was a weird smell in the room like the previous occupant had super B.O. or something. Serge couldn't smell it with his smoker's olfactory equipment but it made me kind of barfy.
* The hotel breakfast was decent, it was what I dubbed "super continental" with all kinds of toast, muffins, waffles (make your own), oatmeal, bagels and cream cheese, hard boiled eggs and fruit, coffee, and orange juice.
* We had planned to go shopping, and so walked down to Century 21, our favorite shopping spot in New York. We went wild and spent far more than budgeted. But where else can you get Levis 501's for 25 bucks? Shoes, belts, shirts, coats, shoes(!) and pants were all tried on and purchased.
* We happened upon a Quebecois tour and tagged along for a bit as she described the buildings going up at ground zero.
* There was a preview center for the 9/11 memorial that we visited. I wasn't prepared for my emotional reaction inside. It was really difficult to relive that day and I started crying and had to get out. Serge didn't see me or he would have mocked me. Next time I'm in New York, I will be more mentally prepared before I go to the memorial.
* Incidentally, the same day, a news item came out that there would be no restrooms at the memorial and that the nearby Century 21 was complaining that they didn't want 10,000 tourists coming by to use their facilities. I don't know why, but it cracked me up. (Okay, it was scat related, that's why.)
* We took our haul back to the hotel and set out for lunch. I had chosen Mexican the day before, so Serge got to choose this lunch. We ended up at a diner on Houston street with a heavily accented New York waitress. We had a couple cokes and a couple of sandwiches for thirty-six bucks. I know I'm too fixated on prices, it's an old habit and it's hard to break. (But I do have to say that we could have bought TWO deluxe ipads for the money we spent on this little two-day junket.)
* I wanted to find a theater to go see Midnight in Paris, but it wasn't in the cards. The weather was kind of crappy while we were there, but there was a nice lull in the rain and we spent a couple of hours people-watching in Union Square. It was a bit depressing seeing how many people are walking while staring at their iphone or smartphone. There were many colorful characters though.
* Then it was time to walk back to the hotel (Union Square to Chinatown was about 20 minutes on foot) to get ready for our big dinner night out. We lubed ourselves with cheap martinis at Posh again (and got hit on, I still got it) before going to Nobu 57. Arguably, our favorite restaurant on the planet.
* The martinis at Nobu are $16. We ordered one anyway.
* Our Hungarian waiter cracked me up. He was very authoritarian. The table next to us ordered and he told them, "You order too much. I bring these things and if you still hungry I bring you rest." With us, he was similar. I said we want Omakase and he asked if we'd had it before and where. Then he said, "I bring you middle Omakase (there were three versions) for repeat customer." That way, we will have different items than when we ordered it before. It was a great call and every plate (eight courses) was a delightful taste experience. If you ever get a chance to go, do it. Of course if you don't like seafood, stay far far away. Most dishes involved some kind of raw seafood.
* I have vague recollections of being in a Tiki Bar after that. Yes, we drank like holes again. I think I'm going to take June off from drinking. Give the liver a deserved break.
* The next day it was time to go home. Sadness. The bank account was relieved though.
* We scored our booze at the duty free shop as we drove home from the airport. We paid $10 for what costs $30 North of the border. This is what the most socialist society in North America looks like.
* And there you have it. I hope you enjoyed this little (meaning long) recap of our trip. We had a ball and can't wait to go back again.
* Sorry I haven't posted in a while, but maybe this lengthy post makes up for the week long vacuum. Cheers!