Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Long Weekend in NYC

So once again I've fallen into a big lull of not posting. But when my friend Kristen alerted me today that it looked like my blog had been taken down (Google blocked it because of suspicious activity, so I had to change my password and answer lots of security questions), I realized:

1. Someone actually was checking in on my blog to read my posts (Yay Kristen! Love you!)
2. I hadn't posted anything since my parent's visit, which was quite a while ago.
3. I had no idea how long the blog had been down, so that seems like a problem.

Thus, I need to remedy this situation. Since it appears I actually have readers. Well, reader. lol

New York City Randomness
First up, our trip to New York City. We decided to go spend a long weekend in the city and visit some friends, see a Broadway play, and just enjoy the little town where Chris and I first met. (The play was Avenue Q, btw. Super hilarious and wonderful!)

On Thursday night, Chris's stepsister Michelle invited us to $30 pizza night. When she first said it like that, we thought it sounded like a terrible deal. Then we discovered it was more than pizza and that this tradition was started by friends of her father's. They used to meet up at this pizza joint and one time they realized they never got a bill. They had really feasted and drank a lot, so everyone just chipped in $30. Thus $30 pizza night was born.

But they totally pamper these guys. The restaurant just kept bringing us out more wine and meatballs and calzones and pizza. We were completely stuffed and kinda drunk by the end. And you know what? $30 seemed like a damn good deal. haha

This is Chris's friend Jacob, who we also visited while we were in the city. He decided to tag along to pizza night.

And here's the whole gang. You can see that our group pretty much took up the whole restaurant. But apparently there was another room in back, because we saw Scott Adsit disappear back there. Our one celebrity sighting of the trip. haha

But anyway, speaking of Chris's friend Jacob, this is where he works:
The New York Stock Exchange

And speaking of places where people work, this is the Google NYC office, where Jacob's friend works.

Jacob's friend invited Jacob, Chris and I to come have lunch with him at the Google office. And it was bananas. Google gives all their employees (and up to 3 guests at a time) free breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And the food was awesome. They bring in real chefs from around NYC to guest cook. And you can go eat out on the balcony and see this glorious view:

Hotel Indigo in Brooklyn
Chris and I decided to bunk in a chic little boutique hotel in Brooklyn. Did you notice how I said little? That was an overstatement. What I meant to say was the world's smallest hotel room. haha

Surprisingly, these pictures make the room look way bigger than it is. There was literally about one foot of space all the way around the bed, and maybe three feet at the foot of the bed. Then this tiny deak and a tiny bathroom. That's all she wrote, folks.

On the plus side, (figuratively), the room was well decorated. I loved this mirror above the desk, as well as the floor-to-ceiling grey curtains. I kinda want to go find an old ornate picture frame from the thrift shop and spray paint it white now ...
The view when you walk in.
The bed nice. Loved the tall white leather headboard and the simple, chic grey and white bed linens. On the wall opposite the bed, there was a mounted flat screen tv.

The bathroom definitely had some space issues, but the finishings were pretty nice. The inside of the shower was gorgeous with little grey rough-cut tiles.

And it went all the way up the wall and arched onto the ceiling and back down the other wall. How adorable is that?? Totally keeping this in mind if our next house ever needs a bathroom renovation.

The faucet about the sink came right out of the mirror, which was kind of neat. A bit modern for my taste, but still nice.


A Trek Among the Stars
Remember how I said we only had one celebrity sighting? Well, that's only kind of true.


Ok, so we didn't actually meet Patrick Stewart, and the Hulk didn't try to kill Chris. We visited Madame Tussauds, which was kind of neat. It's pretty amazing what they can do with wax and a billion hours staring at a celebrity. Well, some of the time. The Matt Lauer wax figure was none too convincing. Hulk was more believable as a real person, actually.

But we did have fun with a few of these wax replicas.
Just me and Salvador Dali, hanging out
Yikes!

Dinner with Mad Scientists
One night, we went over to Jekyll and Hydes for dinner. It's got this mad scientist theme going on, and there are little skits and lots of animatronics. Basically the closest you can get to Disney World in NYC. My favorite part was the restrooms. You walk into this huge fireplace, twist some secret lever and the stone wall falls back and you walk into this long hallway totally lined with books. Mmm, books. Do huge shelves of books make anyone else drool? Just me?

So you just kind of scoot along the wall until you find the section that is actually a secret door and then hope you found the right restroom for your gender. Haha Love it. The hallway was actually much darker than the picture above, but without the flash it was too blurry.


A Whirlwind Tour of Parks
So of course we go to this huge city and spend a huge chunk of our time in the parks, where we can pretend we're not in a huge city. Makes sense, right?

Bryant Park

Battery Park
We spent some time in the new Highline Park. This used to be elevated railroad tracks, but recently, they've been converting the elevated sections into a park, so you can walk along above the streets and under buildings. It's basically a big pier with no ocean. But there are vendors so you can buy goodies and look at art for sale and stuff.
Highline Park
Why yes, that is a red velvet cake ice cream sandwich in my hand. Nice of you to notice.
I thought this section in particular was creative. It's a viewing area so you can watch the cars drive under the park.


So then, we went to Central Park and an epic squirt gun fight broke out among hundreds of people. It was crazy.

We're Not Tourists, I Swear
Ok, maybe a little. I blame Chris.
Times Square

Walking over the Brooklyn Bridge


Buying a mango on the Brooklyn Bridge

Grinning like a fool when the vendor carves your mango to look like a flower
Saw this sign while wandering around. Loved it.

The new World Trade Center
Statue of Liberty and a pirate ship, I guess

Live Like Locals
We also took some time to enjoy the things we would probably do if we actually lived in NYC, like getting a drink with friends after work...

... and waiting an hour in a cramped lobby for our number to be called so we could feast on some super authentic dim sum.

Who sees beef balls? I see beef balls.


There ya have it. A nice long weekend in our favorite city. And hopefully there will be another post or two to come soon. ;-)