So....we woke up in Atlanta, caught a plane to Newark, and landed around 9 or 10 in the morning....
So...New Jersey's the garden state? Well, maybe the rest of NJ is great, but the parts I saw...um, not so much.
In fact, I told Damon later that it is #2 on my list of cities in the U.S. that I dont ever want to live or be stuck in....El Paso is number 1.
(that's us standing outside the Newark Airport. Yes,I'm smiling. Newark sucked, but I was just about to catch a cab out of there!)
So, one $55+tolls & tip cab ride later, there we were on the East Side checking into our hotel room by Central Park.
The hotel was sooooo great, but more importantly--the people who work there were so nice & helpful.
Apparently Damon had quite a time finding hotel rooms this weekend because of the NYC Marathon.
So we checked in....& then went to lunch at a local Italian restaurant named "Ottominelli's" (I could be spelling that wrong...)
It was great. My lunch was just wonderful, and the hot tea was so soothing to my sore throat.
After that...Empire State Building.
(yes, I was looking up for falling pennies...remember how when you were a kid, people would tell you that if you drop a penny off the Empire State Building & it hit somebody standing on the ground that it would kill them?? Well, I was going to keep my guard up---just in case anyone up there was trying to test that theory!)
What next? Chinatown!
I didnt get many pictures in Chinatown...sorry about that.
But, here we are standing on the street, about to go into this little coffee & pastry place...we were at the edge of Chinatown & Little Italy...
And here we are in that little restaurant. Oh, wait, this picture is not of me, it's of a super-rude-hateful-stupid-beastie-has-no-manners-I-want-the-whole-world-Veruca-Salt-wannabe.
Yes, the larger woman in the mult-toned shawl/parka/coverall thing is hateful.
Scenario: we enter, we proceed to the back of the shop & are informed that we can sit anywhere. So, we do. Then, this woman & her two friends, and a toddler enter. They take up quite a bit of space & time while parking the stroller, taking off their coats, deciding where they want to sit, getting the child settled...etc.
In the meantime, a young couple enters just after the 3 women. They take no time getting a table & cuddling & looking over the menu.
Here comes the waitress.
She takes the young couple's order.
So, big-fat-meanie stands up & says, "Hey, we were here first. You need to be taking our order."
Now, if you want to get technical, WE (Damon & I) were here before ALL O' Y'ALL! But, you didnt see me standing up & throwing a hissy fit.
So, the waitress politely tells the woman that she will be there shortly.
After the young couple, the waitress gets our order.
Hateful-beastie-biotch goes to the back of the store to tattle tale to her manager.
So, when she comes back by our table & sits down, I said to the waitress, loud enough for this woman to hear me, "Don't let HER get to you. She's just hateful & you're doing a fine job."
We had coffee & a late afternoon dessert.
After that...souvenir shopping for the little one. (I'll have to post pics of him in his NYC garb! I just dont have any yet...)
Then....World Trade Center Ground Zero.
You get there & just think, "where'd they go?" It's this big, huge hole in the ground. All the debris is gone now, and most of the buildings around there are remodeled/fixed or under construction. The area is highly trafficked, but very, very clean.
This is the fire station across the street
And, shortly after we got there...they had a call.
What it looks like now...
(there were, I think 6 more big signs like this listing all the heroes of 9/11)
After that...I took Damon on the Subway.
Well, we rode it together. It's not like I'm some Subway pro or anything. But, he'd never been on the NYC Subway, so we took a ride.
Went back to the hotel...rested, and then went out to dinner.
Ricardo's Steak House (oh yes, I will return to this restaurant. I dont know when, but I will be back!)
And that was it. Our quick Anniversary trip.
We woke up early on Sunday to fly back before all the road closures for the NYC Marathon.
Sadly, I got on a flight from ATL to DFW, but Damon didn't make it. (we were flying stand-by). He ended up not getting home last night until around 11! Thank goodness we had two cars parked at the airport!!!!!
A side note about New York......I always wanted to live there. Always. But, with this trip. I was hurried & somehow felt very, very, claustrophobic. Like the city was caving in on me. Too many people so close all of the time, no matter where you go, and even in the restaurants--they try to cram as many tables & chairs in there as possible. It didn't seem to be a very disability-friendly environment, I noticed that. I'm a small person who doesn't really take up too much space, but I felt like I had none when I was there. I just wanted some OPEN SPACE!
...and on a mommy-note: how inconvenient to have a baby & live there. Just the constant hustle & bustle, so many people, so many obstacles....and the Bugaboo Frog seems to be the official stroller of NYC. They were everywhere.
On a brighter note: the cultural diversity & activity options for children there are amazing. So, I guess it's give & take. You'll have that no matter where you live...