Yeah, yeah, yeah, yada, yada, yada. So you went to NY. WE KNOW. But what did you actually DO there?
That's what I imagine you (dear reader) to be saying right now. If not saying, thinking. And if you weren't actively thinking it, you probably secretly were deep down but you just didn't KNOW you were thinking it. So now you know, that I know, that WE ALL KNOW.
Diagram of bell sounds
So here be some of the highlights of the stuff and ting I got up to this time round. One of the top things on my to-do list (that didn't involve eating) was to go and see the High Line Gardens. These hadn't been opened by the time I left and I'd always found the concept intriguing so was keen to visit in person.
It was quite a chilly and windy whilst I was up there, but the gardens were really pretty. One part that was particularly interesting was one of the Public Art installations on the 14 St Walkway (for that is where I entered the park). Here, Stephen Vitiello's 'A Bell for Every Minute' chimes the sound of a different bell recorded from somewhere in the New York City each minute, with a chorus of all the bells at the top of the hour. The above photo is the map of where each recorded bell sound is located physically. There were famous bells such as the Stock Exchange bell, the United Nations Peace bell, but also more everyday bells such as diner bells, bike bells etc.
It was really pretty to listen to and the sounds fill the space and echo out into the city. Definitely worth a visit.
I ate a loooot of food this trip, despite having (I think) contracted tonsillitis which flaired up for the duration of my trip. But, true to form and trooper that I am, I didn't let it hold me back from literally eating my way around Manhattan. The above photo was taken by my friend at the height of the tonsillitis pain, and I was eating the only thing that could possibly have soothed my throat at that time.
I don't normally like rice pudding but the only place IN THE WORLD that I will eat it is at Rice to Riches. On this occasion I chowed down on the cheesecake flavour with an Oreo cookie topping. Divine.
No trip to NYC would be complete without a snap of my favourite building in the world, naturally. Our hotel was only a few blocks from the art-deco masterpiece that is the Chrysler, and we had a pretty awesome view of it out the window of our room. Bonus.
I wanna dance!
I also really really wanted to see another show on Broadway. While I was living out there I saw many shows (including one memorable occasion when I stalked Mario Lopez at the stage door and he completely blanked me. BAD Mario Lopez.) and they are always wonderful. This time I saw Billy Elliot. The storyline was so moving, BOY can those kids dance and of course, I loved the Elton John-penned score. My only gripe is that sadly, Americans just CAN NOT do a Geordie accent. Hell, I can't even do one and I'm British. I mean, they tried their best, but I couldn't understand what the heezy they were trying to say half the time.
Shame, as it was otherwise awesome. Think I'll try and catch it in the West End and see if the British version is better. (I think, probably, with the natural accent advantage)
And of course, no evening at a Broadway show is complete without dessert at Junior's after the show. Junior's cheesecake is a New York institution. When I lived over there, whenever my boss and I wanted to sweet talk someone into doing something for us at work, we would run across the street to Junior's in Grand Central, buy a brick-like slab of their gorgeous cheesecake and use it as bargaining collateral. Worked every time.
Their slices are the size of my face, this was a chocolate mousse cheesecake and though there was willing (dear god was there willing), try as I might, I just could not finish it. SO GOOD.
When can I go back?