Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Whirlwind Trip to New York City

It has been almost exactly two years since I was last in NYC. The whole reason for making the trip was to visit some of my best friends who live there. We would have loved to stay one full week or more, but it was too expensive! Of course, it wasn't easy trying to see everyone in three short days, but we managed to see a good percentage.

After landing at LGA late Wednesday morning, we hung out for about an hour in the LGA SkyClub killing time until we could check into our hotel. We took public transportation (M60 bus then N/Q subway) to 39th Ave in Long Island City and walked to the Ramada from there. I had tried to bid for hotels in Manhattan on Priceline, but couldn't find anything under $150 per night. We paid $99 per night with our AAA discount to sleep across the river.
We had already bought three tickets on Stubhub to the Mets game that evening. Originally my friend Corey was supposed to go with us, but he wasn't feeling well. Luckily my flight attendant friend Gretchen was available and willing to join us. After drinking beer and eating a late lunch at The Ginger Man (one of NYC's best beer bars), we met Gretchen at Grand Central Station and took the 7 train out to Citifield. The game was initially delayed for about 30 minutes due to heavy rain, but it finally cleared off enough to play. We had fun watching the game and catching up with Gretchen and didn't get back to the hotel until midnight (the game went into extra innings; we left at the top of the 12th).
More rain was in the forecast for Thursday so we opted to see a different kind of "MET" - the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Suggested admission is $20 per person but Greg & I chose to pay only $10 total. We had been to the MET before when we first started dating in 2009, so this time we just focused on the things that most interested us:  European Paintings (c1230-1800), Egyptian Art, Medieval Art (c300-1500), and 19th- and Early 20th- Century European Paintings and Sculpture. In the process of roaming around the museum we also saw the Musical Instruments collection which was pretty interesting. Sadly, the Robert Lehman Collection, American Wing paintings, and Roof Garden were all closed for various reasons. About halfway through our four hour visit we ate lunch in the cafeteria. Two bread bowls of minestrone soup and one bottle of water cost us $18!
After our museum excursion, we returned to the hotel to clean up and change clothes for dinner. I had organized a get-together with some of my best friends from Nokia (where I was working when I left NY in 2009). There were eight of us total (four couples) and we had a great time catching up and eating a delicious meal at Rouge et Blanc in SoHo. Greg & I also received our first official wedding present (excluding the cash that both of our parents have given us towards wedding costs) - a generous gift card to Bed, Bath & Beyond! Thanks, gals!!!

We slept in a bit on Friday as we were out past midnight once again. Luckily, while still overcast, the rain held off and we were able to walk the entire length of the High Line. The final section just opened in early June! We started at the northernmost point (entrance at 30th Street), walked to 23rd Street, ate lunch & drank beer at one of my old haunts (The Half King), then finished the section from 23rd Street to Gansevoort. We wrapped up the afternoon by walking through the Meatpacking District and West Village to Blind Tiger Ale House (another one of the best beer bars in NYC).
After a quick drink, it was time to meet Greg's cousin Andrew and his wife Sarah at their apartment on Battery Park Place. We chatted for awhile at their apartment with their 2 1/2-year-old son Dylan, then took the subway/walked to Trattoria Cinque in TriBeCa. We had another delicious meal (pork cheek, lard & mozzarella pizza, anyone?!?!) and a great time catching up.

Our final stop of the night was my friend Corey's apartment in the East Village. As we crossed from west to east on M21 bus on 8th Street, we encountered big crowds in Greenwich & West Village getting fired up for the Pride Parade on Sunday. I took Greg to the parade in 2009 and we were disappointed to miss it this time around! We hung out with Corey until after 1am and then returned to the hotel. When we woke up the next morning, we found out that gay marriage was legalized in NY state. A cause for celebration!!!
We checked out of our hotel at 11am on Saturday and walked to a diner below the 39th Ave train station. We both ate huge omelets for brunch, then retraced our steps to the airport (subway/bus). We checked in for our flight and hung out in the SkyClub for a couple of hours, partaking of the free wifi (to review our July calendar & plans), free snacks and free drinks!
We actually landed in Nashville a full 45 minutes early so had to wait awhile for Greg's parents to pick us up from the airport. The wait was worth it, however, as they took us to dinner at Darfon's!

All in all it was a great trip albeit jam-packed with visiting our friends. I hope we can get back up there before another two years go by!

The link to all of my NYC photos is embedded in this post's title.

Here is a list of the beverages we enjoyed during our trip:
Delta SkyClub LGA: Brooklyn Lager
The Ginger Man: Ginger Man Ale (house beer brewed by Captain Lawrence brewery) x2; Smuttynose Abbey Dubbel & Blue Point Hoptical Illusion; tasted Blue Point Rastafa Rye
Citifield: Sam Adams Summer Ale x2
Rouge et Blanc: French white wine
Local: sauvignon blanc
The Half King: Greenport Harbor Ale & Dogfish 60 minute IPA
Blind Tiger Ale House: tasted Southern Tier Mokah Imperial Stout & Victory Hop Wallop; drank Victory Baltic Thunder & Victory Hop Devil
Trattoria Cinque: Blue Point Ale (not sure which variety as the server didn't know)
beers we bought at the corner market near Corey's apartment: Peak Organic Nut Brown Ale x2; Goose Island IPA & Honker's Ale
Delta SkyClub LGA: Brooklyn Lager & Skyy Vodka Martinis x2

No comments:

Post a Comment