Saturday, November 06, 2010

A Day in the City

This weekend, I hit the Big Apple with one of my oldest and dearest friends. So far, it's been a great time. Here are some things I noticed in the course of our travels today.

Observation 1: New Yorkers are so friendly!

They help you find a parking space, they help you with directions, they are happy to take your picture for you, they offer dining advice, they make friendly and interesting conversation when you're stuck together on the subway.

Observation 2: People love to talk to Christine.

I think it's a vibe she sends out. For example, at a Starbucks in the Village, I'm getting croissants and when I come back, this totally stoned woman sitting near us is telling Christine her life story, complete with vivid reminiscence of her school cafeteria and the scary lunch lady that worked there when she was a kid. Thus confirming my suspicion that Christine's true calling was to be a therapist.

Observation 3: The Village is actually pretty normal.

We wandered around for a while, wondering if we were in the right place. Finally, I called home. Savageman, who grew up in Brooklyn, quipped, "What, do you think the Freaks are all waking up early so that they can come out and entertain the tourists? Everyone's still asleep." Maybe he was right. We finally did find an awesome street fair, which was great for shopping, eating, and people watching. There were definitely some college students, but everyone looked pretty normal. We also took a nice walk on The High Line, which was very cool. And normal.

Observation 4: Vendor food is delicious. Had a real Gyro. Awesome.

Observation 5: Chinatown's pretty hard to understand if you don't speak Chinese.

But lots of people offered us Gucci, Louis Baton, etc., which we understood perfectly. We were more than happy with our hippie bags and scarves from the street fair, and were suspicious of the food, so we headed down Canal Street and away from Chinatown.

Observation 6: Little Italy sneaks up on you.

One minute we were seeing Chinese everywhere and the next - Bam! - everything's Italian. The fire hydrants are red, white, and green. Restaurants up and down the street. I got Christine to try some pistachio spumoni and she agreed it was incredible. Even on a cold day.

Observation 7: Starbucks is everywhere.

Thank God.

Observation 8: The South Street Seaport is a great place to watch the sun go down.

It has some nice shops and stuff too. But we went back to Little Italy for dinner.

Observation 9: The subway is a nice place to meet nice people.

It might have been the Christine Factor again, but we met some lovely people on the ride - a fellow bibliophile and a nice couple who own the Bone Lick Park Bar-B-Que in the Village - where we might go for brunch tomorrow. It was a long ride, due to "congestion." How is a subway line "congested?" we wondered. It's not like the street, where there are lots of cars all at once. But we didn't mind because we had these lovely people to pass the time with, talking about books and restaurants and good places to park.

Observation 10: Ow, my feet! (Christine's too.)

The map we almost left behind in the apartment is starting to show the wear - it got plenty of use. But there really is no better way to really learn a city than to walk it. And boy, did we walk it!

Ready for more tomorrow...


Christine said...

Love your blog post! I have some feedback:
First, it's Louis Vuitton, not Louis Baton, you crunchy tree hugger you! Good thing we didnt attempt to buy one.
Also, dont forget our driving and parking fun. I think it's an observation that the city isnt so scary to drive around as long as you have a great navigator such as yourself.
Thanks for the great weekend! :)

Kath said...

LMAO!!! I think Louis BATON is what they were selling - it's a good thing you were there - I never would have known the difference!

Thanks yourself - it was a great time. :-D