New York ~ Day Eight
1:57am. Last night, and I am sad…and yet, so very happy. Bittersweet. This has been a whirlwind ride, a trip of a lifetime, but not the last time, I hope. I certainly can’t afford to blow money here regularly, so it will be a while, likely years. I have people I didn’t get to visit. I had places I didn’t get to go. I had food I didn’t get to eat, although, one would have a right to question that last one.
Today started out at breakfast at Grey Dog again. Great place. And shortly after I had to book it to Brooklyn, my first time there to meet up with my girl-friend Andy. She and I were in the same yoga intensive in Hawaii a while back. She moved to Brooklyn last year, and has since become a stylist in a barber shop. Well, she proposed I come see her at work for an undercut. Now, I’ve never shaved any part of my head, ever. But, my theme of this trip has been to say “yes” to opportunity…and that’s generally par for the course of my life, with some exceptions, of course. But, here, anything is possible. So after some snafus with restricted weekend subway access, I had to walk twenty minutes to a different stop. Finally, got on a train, headed to my 1pm appointment and our train stops due to the train ahead having door issues. Thank goodness it was brief because I barely made it there on time
Brooklyn is an entirely different beast than Manhattan, and I think I can base that off of only two intersections I experienced. I didn’t have to walk around there much, because the stop was close to the barber shop. But, definitely a more challenged area. Andy was happy to see me, and we strategized on the cut. It couldn’t be too high, but still a fair amount was removed. And then the etched pattern she wanted was discussed. I think it turned out well, and I love it, and bonus…it feels pretty amazing to have the hair off my neck in the warmer weather both NY and Seattle have been continuing to have. I am, in fact, going home to a heat wave in Seattle. Plus, hair grows back, so no permanent loss, right? One has to live life for it is short. Cliche’ but true. Stop waiting for the perfect moment to do something, the perfect conditions…just take the leap, jump over the fear, play a little. I promise, life will go on whether you do or don’t and one day, you will look back and wonder where the time and opportunity went. It went away when you were too busy looking to tomorrow.
So now I have rainbow bangs and an etched undercut. Very Brooklyn, according to Andy. She recommended I take the shuttle to the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens…and while Chelsea Market was calling me, I figured I had enough time, and so why not. Always up for an adventure. As Brooklyn is different than Manhattan, so are the Brooklyn subways. I am definitely a stand-out minority. It’s good for a change, if not a bit odd to feel that way. White privileged folk, such as myself, even if not rich or nor unburdened, still have the upper hand…and it’s only all too obvious when put in different social, ethnic environments from time to time. There are billions of people on the planet and a fair majority of them are not white. A good way to remind yourself is to expose yourself to diversity. And being in New York shoves that in your face in a very humbling way.
Quick run to the gardens and I was off to Chelsea Market and The High Line. The market, a stark contrast to the Brooklyn area I came from not 40 minutes before, houses high end mercantile, food, and other merchants, and restaurants. Some important companies reside above the market, like Food Network. I’m more interested in the stores below, however. Great selection of goods for the serious foodie, like myself. I spent some, but not nearly as much as I wanted to. I also bought the Chelsea Market Cookbook! I’m excited to get home and try it out. The kiosk person I bought it from had lost her voice mostly and I felt so bad for her, I offered to buy her a tea. Went down to Sarabeth’s Bakery, stocked up on a couple treats, and got her a chamomile lavender tea with lemon and honey and took it back to her. She was very grateful. Random acts of kindness are good things, easy to do, if you put yourself in someone else shoe’s…hers were stuck in that kiosk with a bad throat and having to deal with lots of tourists. So, I did what I’d want someone to do for me. That simple.
It was hard to pick a place to eat, but I settled on Giovanni Rana’s, Italian. Good but not mind-blowing pasta with prosciutto, butter and sage, and I was in and out, on my way to the High Line, an elevated portion of old subway that has been converted into a green walkway. Quite popular, especially at sunset, and crowded. But, I took my mini-cherry tart and had a little walk, and a little dessert picnic to finish of the evening. Not before turning back to find my entrance staircase off the elevated track only to go too far south and run into the biggest party along the tracks, closing off part of it in white tents with crystal chandeliers, and flowers, and boxes and boxes of sound equipment, and throngs of waiters in black tie, security all over, and when I saw the building next to it read “GIORGIO ARMANI,” well, I figured out it was for something very special. Beautiful people everywhere. And with my own two eyes, I saw male ARMANI models! Oh my. Oh myyy. Inhuman specimens of creation. But, stunning nonetheless. My life, I swear. Never ceases to amaze me, the crazy things I experience, whether random, or not…
The topper for this cake of craziness tonigh: Wicked! I ponied up some money for that one, but I wanted to see the show on Broadway, and I wanted my last night to go big. It was fantastic. At this level, the talent is so polished, the voices out of this world. Of course, the set is something else to behold entirely. Worth the money. And so the entertainment tally this week: 3 musicals, 1 Met opera, and 1 night of live jazz. I think I did all right, if I may say so myself.
Making my way back to my place for one last night…I walk past Prince Street Pizza and take one last opportunity for a slice of NY pie. Took it back to my place, ate it in the lounge common area, trying to savor each bite, making those around me jealous. So tasty. On Monday…the nutrition and exercise kick back in to get this body back to peak condition. I’m actually excited about that, but I may need a couple days. Seeing my trainer Wednesday and dreading it, but you’ve got to start somewhere, may as well be where you’re at.
Got most of my packing done, will finish in morning. And then I have to be back here by 3PM for my airport pick-up. I’m trying to figure out what last food runs I want to do in that time! Can I possibly sneak in more epicness?? Will it be dumplings? Italian? Sushi? I DON’T KNOW.
I may need to just stumble around and try my luck. It’s been pretty damn good to me so far…
I’m ready to go, and I’m not ready to go. But, either way, I will have to come back. And you all should come, too.