Well, I did it. I promised myself a magnificent New York trip to celebrate this milestone birthday of mine and, thanks to a very good friend, I finally delivered. So if you've noticed I've been missing for a few days , this is where I've been hiding. In fabulous New York!
And it has been truly fabulous. From the very comfortable and pleasant Aer Lingus flight, where we were so well looked after and even the food tasted good, to the post holiday pre-boarding glass of wine and the special welcome home.
Our days were speckled with delights that tickled both our fancies... Shopping, sights a show and some laughs.
Although tired on arrival we still pounded the streets after checking in to the very centrally based and surprisingly roomy Hotel Edison. Okay, the bathrooms were small but adequate, and who needs to swing a cat anyway? It was perfectly sufficient and we were a stones throw from the very energetic and iconic Times Square. I could have happily sat there soaking up the atmosphere, hoardings and showbiz buzz all day long. Just me and George M. Cohen, Giving our Regards to Broadway....
However, there was so much more to do than sit around, people watching in this bustling metropolis that truly never ever sleeps!
Like I say, we pounded the streets that first day, getting our bearings and on the way finding Victoria's Secret and the Empire State Building! In our tired state we somehow missed nearby Macy's but it was a very good start indeed.
We did the touristy bits the next day via a Grayline bus tour, a handy and time saving way to do things I think. Highlight for me was St Paul's Chapel and the new Towers spiraling up from the ashes of Ground Zero. I found it quite emotional....
We finished that day with our discounted tickets for Priscilla Queen of the Desert. It was quite an outrageous but fun show, with fantastic Special Effects and costumes, which admittedly took until the 2nd Act to win me over, but win me over they did. Sadly we just missed being pulled up on stage by the cast. I could have then declared to the world that 'I danced on Broadway'! Actually our night didn't end there, it ended with some after show drinks in the Hotel piano bar. Expensive enough but a very pleasant end to our day.
The next day was designated shopping day and we took ourselves off to Jersey Gardens to shop 'til we dropped. Sigh. Not my favourite activity in the world. I want the goodies I just hate shopping for them! However, with plenty of breaks whenever I felt like it I managed very well indeed and it was a good day that ended with a visit to Langans Irish pub! We just went for a light dinner and a drink but, you see, the music was very good. So we stayed just a little longer than intended! Let's just say that we also bopped til we dropped that day! I blame Andy, the energetic musician with his foot drums... A real one man band!
The following day was do your own thing day and I, being done with the shopping element of this trip, chose some more sight seeing. So, off I went navigating NYC's subway system and Staten Island Ferry, on my own, to fulfil my long awaited date with the Statue of Liberty. We had a lovely morning, the Statue of Liberty, the city and I...
My powers of navigation didn't end there, oh no. I was on a mission you see and I figured out I could stop off at Penn Station in the way back so I could finally get to go up to the Empire State Building's observation deck. I missed out on this the last time I was here so, 20 odd years later and some the wiser, I finally made it and was treated to some stunning views....
In a fit of madness, probably fueled by the confidence inspired by my solo exploring morning, myself and my mutated shopping gene decided on a last minute foray through the madness of the very multi-floored Macy's, alone. That was the scariest thing I did that day... And I bought something too! I fought the madness of Macy's and won! To understand this momentous achievement you need to understand that I can usually only bear 15 minutes in the bi-floored TK Maxx!
That evening, our last, both solo explorers went for a bite to eat and a drink in Langan's again, where we swapped tales accompanied with some more music. A very relaxed and fun night to end our fabulous New York stay.
This is a trip whereby you push yourself to the limit to fit everything in. Plenty of time to sleep and rest when you come home is my attitude.... This is New York City!! Enjoy and make the most of it.
Therefore I arrived home very tired yet exhilarated from my exciting travels and was glad to be home, to see and be welcomed home by my very sleepy eyed boy.
The special welcome I mentioned? The first words out of his mouth?
Where's all the stuff..... Hahaha!!
Yeah... I love you too son!
Hope it's not another 20 years before I see you again!