Although I have never lived in New York City, so many things about the city feels like a familiar beacon. Sure I get the frazzles, thinking about finding parking and navigating the “interweb” of the metro or stepping over something disgusting; but… Maybe it’s the pace, the crowd, the nasty smell that reminds me of growing up in a bustling dirty metro. Or the ethnic food calls from every corner and the anonymity of a ‘real city’ tugs the gut and heart strings respectively. Or maybe because I’ve just been there way more times than I care to admit. The touristy things are checked off, the familiarity-bred-contempt is on its downward trajectory by now, no agendas to push, except a list of food things that are special to this crazy city alone.
This was my first trip back with Josh. And when I think why I’ve held back for all this time, I think it’s because the perceived ghastliness, the public opinion of Big Bad had somehow seeped into my maternal psyche. I mean I took him to Madrid, Dubai and Calcutta. So why not New York?
We made a few changes this time around. We drove. All the way. We parked where we could and wanted, we took it slow. I napped. (Gasp)
We still made lists to try out all those buzzfeed/ Conde Nast/ Travel magazine/ Pinterest-popular food innovations that were supposedly taking the city by storm. We didn’t worry about penny pinching, realizing you never really save much doing that. We stayed in the city, not in Long Island, not in Jersey City, not even in Queens. We got an Airbnb listing we liked on the Upper East Side and set up camp there. We spent a lot of time at Central Park and in open spaces. We were also ready to sit in crammed traffic and did a fair amount of that without cribbing. We went prepared to walk and to lie down on the grass, we went open-minded to live on pizza and ice cream and prepared enough to know which ones we wanted and what the backup options were. We went prepared to try Brooklyn again another time and focus only on the fun stuff IN the area we were staying in.
Who taught us to be this smart? Boston did. Yup I admit. Living in Chicago taught us many things, but living in Massholeland taught me 1) to expect and deal with nasty people and be ok if you’re the only nice person in the room 2) focus on not crossing the bridge (I’m talking about you Cambridge!) 3) to expect and deal with traffic and parking, smell and noise and the nuisance of urban chaos that we live and love.
So here are some snippets from our recent New York trip
-Eggloo @ china town for Hongkong style waffles stuffed with icecream and pokey sticks
-NY style bagels from H&M’s Upper East Side location
-Delish coffee and chocolate donuts from tiny Joe Coffee (Lexington Ave UES)
-Amazing awesome pizza and finger licking tiramisu from San Matteo Pizzeria e Cucina (writing this is making me so hungry!!)
-More amazing pizza from Margherita NYC
– drippy waffles from some cart in Central Park that everyone talks about but the name is escaping me right now
Crazy litchi deal from Chinatown 😉 you didn’t see that coming did you? We were stuck in traffic after picking up pizza at Little Italy on our way back, what was I supposed to do? Pass on litchi? No thanks. I got down. They let me “haggle” with them in English while they laughed at me in Chinese (?) but I got my delicious fruits for my 4 hour road trip back home.
Overall this trip was such a fun fulfilling trip. I wish we did more full family trips like this, more often… And I don’t believe I said that in writing. Anyway I genuinely wish Josh would remember snippets of happy memories from this trip and we would get to repeat many more like this.
Just for fun: here’s a picture of my mom waiting with 2 eggloo sundaes in 2 hands while we wait for our ride (the guys) to circle back and pick us up since there was no parking available