Hello, 30! New York City: Part 1

30 and stairs - escada by Hernani Pinto

Escada by Hernani Pinto

I have been assured that my 30’s will be even better than my 20’s. I’m only 4 days in and so far I cannot complain, with the exception that I’m apparently in the beginning stages of Alzheimers.

My birthday morning (Friday) started out with me running late to work, running out the door and realizing as the door shut that my keys were inside.  Not only did I lock my keys in the house, my Roomie was at the gym (unbeknownst to me otherwise I wouldn’t have pounded on my door at 7:30am and sent snotty text messages).  Needless to say, I was eventually rescued from the floor outside the door by Roomie so I could spend two hours at work.

The train we were supposed to catch was cancelled due to inclimate weather in North Carolina.  Luckily, the Amtrak guys I talked to on the phone were amazing!  They upgraded us to Business Class!  I never get upgraded or win things so I was annoyingly excited that this nice man, “Robert”, upgraded us without heming and hawing.  I have a little bit of love in my heart for the man.

Three-hours and some change later we arrived at Penn Station in Manhattan then walked to our hotel – 70 Park Avenue Hotel – which is just a few short blocks from Grand Central Station (Amtrak doesn’t run into Grand Central which is just weird).

Grand Central Station - Night

Photo I took of Grand Central Station on March 7th

The room was modern, but the tub is not what one would call a soaking tub by any means.  It was super low and what I would call, child – not parent – friendly.  Naturally, I had to crawl (literally) in and have a photo taken.

Me in Bathtub

In keeping with my Alzheimers, I realized the following morning I had forgotten two very important items: my dress shoes and boot socks.  Honestly, I have no idea how I forgot to pack socks.  Leaving behind my heels – meh, not too shocking.  But socks!

Given we were up at 06:30 we decided to hit a little diner for breakfast – nothing mind blowing – then hauled off to Grand Central Station to see if they had any shoe stores inside or nearby.  Yeah, I got a little carried away with the shiney-prettiness of Grand Central Station’s marble, ceilings, pretty chandeliers, and just about everything else inside.

Window Ceiling Light - Grand Central Station

After 45 minutes of being swept up in the beauty that is Grand Central, we hopped a cab and hustled through six floors and two “sides” of Macy’s to find shoes and socks.  On the bright side, I did get a new pair of heels for $45!  They actually give a ‘visitor’ discount for us non-NYers, plus there was a sale.  Yay for that!

We dropped my new heels back at the hotel and headed out to Friedman’s Lunch (Holy Mother, I love this restaurant) to meet up with a buddy of The Greekanese’s that he served with in Iraq and hasn’t seen in 10 years; I don’t have a witty nickname for him so we’ll just call him ‘Buddy’.  I like Buddy.  He’s a coold dude with a lot of knowledge on the City.

Buddy and The Greekanese

Buddy and The Greekanese

A lovely man (actually, he was quite handsome in that mountain-man kind of way…) didn’t even bother answering, but nodded repeatedly in that, “Oh yes, you do in fact want that” kind of way when I asked him if the Gluten Free Chicken and Cheddar Waffle with Tobasco-infused maple syrup was actually good.  Let’s just say, I love the chef and the waiter and I’d marry either one of them today if they’d teach me this recipe.

Chicken n' Waffle from Friedmans Lunch

We traipsed around the City for a few more hours, skirting through parks, snapping pictures of statues (I’ll have those in Part 2), and finding Tu-Lu’s Bakery to continue my face stuffing with deliciousness – hello, Red Velvet Cupcake and Cherry White Chocolate cookie, I love you!

Red Velvet Cupcake and Cookie

We made our way back to the hotel after a few more photo-ops of churches and structure (again, I’ll post in the next blog) in order to get ready for Les Miserables!

Les Miserables at the Imperial Theatre - Broadway - New York City - March 2014

The Greekanese started planning this little jaunt to the city late last year after I forced him to watch Les Miserables – the movie (not my favorite) and the 25th Anniversary from 02 Arena (my favorite – look up Norm Lewis as Javert and you’ll understand why).

In order to celebrate my 3rd decade of life, I decided a wee bit of dressing up was in order.  Thanks to Rent the Runway, I was able to wear this Hervé Léger Shoreline Sheath.

Hervé Léger Shoreline Sheath from Rent the Runway

My shoes were actually graphite in color – the photo just came out a bit funky

The show was great, though you can tell they are still finding their feet: this is Les Mis’ return to Broadway and opening night isn’t until the end of March.

After the show we grabbed a cab and headed to La Biblioteca – a fancy Tequila joint where people have their own tequila lockers – to meet up with my buddy Ace whose smiling face I hadn’t seen in two years, and his girlfriend (who was awesome!).  I’m looking forward to seeing his happy face in April during my 8-hour layover at JFK before flying off to Ireland.

Ace and I at La Biblioteca in NYC

Come back later this week for Part 2 – I’ll be throwing in some architecture photos, park photos, and random things around the City.

I suppose leaving out the Empire State Building shot (take on my Droid Razr while it was sprinkling outside) would make this incomplete.  So here it is:

Empire State Building at NIght

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