Thursday, May 10, 2007

God, what to say about our beautiful trip to New York? (Our new favorite city). Noah got fired (not so unexpectedly) on Tuesday night and as we sat up late night on Wednesday we realized we might not get another chance to take such a last minute trip since I conveniently had 5 days off in a row. We bought tickets on Travelocity at 2am for 3 nights at a modern, hip hotel in midtown Manhattan,. We flew from LAX on Friday morning and landed at JFK at 1 pm eastern time. We cabbed it to our hotel on 5th ave and 55th street. After a celebratory drink at our hotel lounge we took a cab to 5th ave and 9th street for 9pm dinner reservations at a restaurant Noah had read about called Cru. We have eaten at the top places in LA and this place blew them all out of the water. Food, service, was all there. The maitre' de asked us where we wanted to eat while we visited and personally made us lunch reservations at Cafe Boulud for the next day. We flagged a cab (great thing about NYC, the minute you decide you want a cab, you wave your hand and there it is), and went back to our hotel. (Our cabby casually asked us in the quintessential NY accent 'You all seen Paris Hilton?').

The next morning we discovered the beauty of the subway system. All you need is a map and a $7 "fun pass" to get you anywhere on Manhattan all day long. We checked out the Union Square Farmers Market. The weather was beautiful, spring had sprung in New York and ramps, herbs, flowers, and people of all shades were out and about. We later headed to Central Park and took all sorts of pictures while saxophone players serenaded us and cherry blossoms drifted past. At 1:30 we walked to Cafe Boulud and ate an amazing ($150) lunch. The staff treated us VIP and Noah (typical!) knew the guy that was seated two tables away from us. Small world! We ate, for example, white asparagus veloute (soup) with vanilla oil and garganelle (a handmade pasta) with morels, snap peas, and english peas. Noah ordered sticky toffee pudding for dessert, I of course, didn't order any but they sent me three different types of house made ice cream. We walked off lunch checking out the neighborhood, then got ready for dinner. Dressed up and (of course) took the subway to the Madison Square Park area and had a cocktail at a place where Noah knew the chef. Then around the corner to A Voce for dinner, an new Italian place that is impossible to get last minute reservations but Noah "knew someone". Aaahh, the beauty of marrying a chef! I highly recommend it. After dinner we hit a rooftop bar that had an amazing view of the city...and then things got a little foggy. Way too much booze! We got the subway back to our hotel and at about 2am was eating hotdogs and schwarma at the nearest corner stand. Another great thing about New York...there is always something nearby that is open.

The next morning we headed up to the top of the Rockefeller Center "Top of the Rock" and was blown away by the incredible view. (See above photo.) We were to meet up with a great friend of mine that I hadn't seen in six years but she was driving in with her family from New Jersey and we weren't sure when she was going to make it in so we headed over to Greenwich Village to hang out. We got a call from my friend, Stacia, who said she had taken the subway in and on a whim got off in Greenwich Village. We hadn't told her where we were going and, wonderfully, we were 4 blocks away from each other. So we hooked up and had a picnic at a small neighborhood playground where her kids could play and we could catch up. Stacia is one of those one-of-a-kind friends that no matter how long you have been apart it feels like its only been a couple of weeks. So happy!!!

Still, the sun is shining in the city. I have blisters on my feet but don't care. We are spending way too much money but realize it's worth it. We fly out tomorrow and start to feel sad. We contemplate moving to NYC and then are realistic that all the beautiful things we see now would seem different if we weren't on vacation. It's such an incredible place with amazing things to see. The more we checked off our "to do list" we only added more. Go if you have the chance.

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