Sunday, February 24, 2008

I <3 NY Part II

Last night was Megan's birthday party. It was good. Meg's parents had a buffet-style dinner for us at their house and we mingled and played Pictionary. That was so fun. My team won, of course. Later that night we hopped on a limo and went to Level Nightclub. I came home pretty late and woke up about three hours ago. Gah. I both hate and love that. I hate that I woke up so late in the day but I love that I got a good 8 hours of sleep after the most time- and energy- consuming week ever.

I had about a week's worth of work waiting for me when I got back on the first day after the long weekend. I barely caught up with it by Friday. This coming week is going to be really stupid ridiculous because I have like 10 ten closings and a dozen clients to see, etc. *sigh. I will crawl back to bed for more sleep, but not before I finally finish my long-awaited accounts of my trip to New York:

On the second day, it was rainy so we decided it would be a perfect day to be indoors in one of NYC's world-famous museums. We chose the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). The MoMA is huge and gorgeous. I really enjoyed seeing some of my favourite artists' works (Pollock, Monet). One of the security guards was even hitting on me and tried to convince me to move to NYC (hmm...). It was a pretty hip and happening place in general and we even managed to get to all the floors in a short amount of time before we had to get to the studio where they were taping The Daily Show.

The show was good and it happened to be the first day of the end of the Writers' strike, too. I came out of the bathroom (for VIPs, ahem) and who did I see? An old highschool friend from home! He was with his girlfriend for a wedding and came to see the show as well. Small world.

I made a bet with myself that he would mention the U.S. Presidential Elections. I won $20 from myself (because no one else would bet me). Oh yeah, on our way to meeting my cousin we saw one of the dancers from Dancing with the Stars. *click* And when I was waiting for my cousin to finish work, who did I find but Lil Kim in his lobby? In person, she is short and she reeked of make up. But it was still cool to see her although I wanted to ask her why she hasn't released a decent album since Notorious K.I.M..

After The Daily Show, we went to the Jay-Z owned, 40/40 Club since I promised myself I would at least check it out. We played some pool in the "Jay Z Room" and ate some of the over-priced food before we headed to K-town and ate at a decent moderately-priced Korean restaurant.

The next day we decided to head to downtown Manhattan towards SoHo, Chinatown and Wall Street. We could've gone to see the site where the WTC used to be but we didn't have time and frankly, I didn't really think it would be anything but a very large construction site. My uncle took us for a tour of Chinatown and we had some Dim Sum before leaving us on our own in Canal Street.

I guess it is true what they say about Canal Street, that you can find the best fakes there. But I really don't think you can find the best fakes unless you walk up to one of those vendors and ask to speak to someone named 'Mary' or something before they take you downstairs to a basement of fake Fendi's that would give Karl Lagerfeld a run for this money. I really didn't like being in Canal Street. firstly, because I hate fakes (suck it up and buy a real one) and secondly, the area was just so, so shady. People would come up to me and ask me if I wanted to buy a Rolex and shit. However, it also happened to be Valentine's Day and a kind gentleman came up to me and gave me a rose, so that was nice (although I'm sure a lot of not-so-savvy people would think that was creepy). It was sweet and kinda brightened up my mood. I ended up giving it to some guy on the street who asked me for it (lol yeah, he asked me for it) and since I didn't wanna hold the thing all day anyway, I told him to go make another woman happy. My good deed of the year DONE.

After Canal Street we went to SoHo which was a vast difference from Canal. So much better. Better stores (even bought something from Burberry!) and the people were more my type of people.

I have to stop here and mention something. Because we were in NYC, between Mel and I, there were alot of Friends, Seinfeld, and Sex and the City (mostly me) references and quotes. In fact, we really outdid it but what the hell, it's New York!

The SoHo area was the 'setting' of where the characters in Friends live and it was pretty true to the show, even though it was filmed in Hollywood. We were so cliché we even chilled in a coffee shop. But seriously, it is a place I would really consider living because of the people and the general area. Too bad it is too cha-ching.

After SoHo, we made our way to NYU and then we had to head back uptown to meet my aunt for dinner at a good Thai restaurant and to see Rent. After the show she took us back to New Jersey. I must say, I was pretty impressed with her driving through New York City. She's a true New Yorker and you really have to be to drive safely in the city. I can't tell you how many times I had to hold my breath just watching NYC traffic and being a pedestrian. Traffic signs and pedestrians mean nothing to NYC cabbies.

New Jersey was a nice change of pace from being in the city for the past few days. Instead of crowdiness and rush hour, it was calm and relaxing. Instead of cabbies, there were trees. Instead of sky scrapers and tall buildings, it was huge mansions and tall trees. Instead of Canal Street, there was Nordstroms. Instead of Lil Kim, well, actually there was a certain East Coast rap artist who lived right around the corner and another several blocks away.

The town we were in was near other small towns and not far from New York State so we mostly saw little towns around there like Ho-ho-kus and Suffern (the towns Carrie went to with Aiden in Sex and the City!). We were taken to some quaint, but unique places. For example, we went to see a movie (I forget what it was called right now) in a theatre that was actually converted from an old-style theatre, complete with an actual live organ player! We went to a Mexican restaurant, which was actually pretty awesome considering I've never really had Mexican food besides Taco Bell (Mexican food is pretty popular in the States).

The next morning, we got up early and went to a pancake restaurant a few towns away. It was soooooo good. They have this thing called 'Lumberjack Pancakes' which is two pancakes, each with a diameter of at least 1.5 feet and is 1-inch thick! My ambitious teen-aged male cousin had it and didn't even make a dent in the second one. The restaurant boasts huge portions and it was funny because they left out containers for people to take unfinished pancakes home. I would have to say it was one of the best pancakes I've ever had.

We went back to the city and went to the Museum of Natural History and then had dinner at an incredible Japanese restaurant. Afterwards was we saw another broadway, Phantom of the Opera. I have see Phantom on Broadway before in Toronto but that was about 10 years ago. I forgot the plot and most of the songs, so I didn't mind seeing it again.

The next morning we had brunch at a '60's-style diner, which I am convinced is owned by a Soprano (even though they're supposed to be fictional, I'm pretty sure it's based on some high-profile mobsters in New Jersey). Nevertheless, the food was good. We went back to the city again to go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Yup, another museum, another art museum. You can't say we didn't do enough in NYC.

After the Met, we went back to Jersey with some Malaysian takeout and ate dinner in front of a movie. It was definitely a nice, relaxing end to the trip. Good movie, good food, good memories.

The next morning we had to wake up at 4 am to catch our 7 am flight. It's a good thing we packed the night before because I had a real tough time getting everything into my suitcase. I didn't understand how I still had trouble packing since half my luggage was gifts when I arrived and I had unloaded them all. I didn't think I bought that much. To this day, I'm still perplexed as to how my 'packing math' didn't add up.

The flight home wasn't as great as when we departed Toronto. It was very turbulent and Mel actually got sick on the plane unlike the first time. At least they played her favourite show, How I Met Your Mother, on the plane, otherwise the entire flight would have been miserable for her.

The trip to New York was great awesome. I left behind my troubled thoughts and feelings and forgot about all my problems when I was there. I missed everyone, but it also felt terrific to know that I am able to go out on my own (with Mel to navigate). For a brief moment, I even wondered how it was possible for me to have to my problems when there is so much more to the world than silly heartache and drama. We are but tiny, tiny irrelevancies (as I discovered while visiting the Space exhibit at the Museum of Natural History) to the World and to everyone else, if you think about it.

But it's really funny (and sad) that even when you come home to those problems you consider serious, you still manage to forget about everything else in the world once again.

^On the NYC subway ^Big Monet ^Me in front of a Pollock ^Mel and the guy from Dancing with the Stars ^Me and Lil Kim. Chill. ^@The Daily Show ^A familiar face from home. ^Times Square ^Does Jay Z really need to charge $8 for a PB & J sandwich? ^Wacky waving inflating flailing arm tube man! ^Canal Street ^Soho ^Burberry ^Washington Square Park @ Museum of Natural History ^Delicious Jap food ^ the Met ^doing The Egyptian ^another Pollock ^outside the Met


Paul Kishimoto said...

The Pollock shot made me lol the first time I saw it—clever.

Kathy said...

Holy shit! When I saw the picture of you with Lil' Kim, I thought you visited a wax museum!