Devon on August 21st, 2009

wineI’m heading back to Texas from my spontaneous second NYC trip. This time I went with two of my cousins, Pamela (24) and Ann (29), on my mom’s side. I left College Station at 5 am — my mom dropped me off at the airport. I flew into JFK for the first time. While I was traveling (and could use my phone) I was texting my cousins — who arrived 5 hours before me from Utah — where the hotel was. One responded with Riverhead. I thought to myself, I have never heard of that area on Manhattan Island. Come to find out, the first hotel was in Riverhead, New York — on the furthest northeastern tip of Long Island (a two hour train ride from JFK by NYC Long Island Train System). So I got off the plane, found my way to the trains, got a taxi in Riverhead, and met my cousins at the hotel around 5pm (ten hours of traveling — I could have gone to Bonn, Germany in that amount of time). That night we went to a winery and had a wine tasting (by the way, the taxi cost more the then wine tasting — go figure). For dinner we went to the grocery store and got microwavable meals — quick, simple, and cheap.

hotelThe next morning we got breakfast from the hotel and as we were getting into the elevator to go to the first floor, my cousin Pamela drops her cell phone down the elevator shaft. Come to find out a Motorola Razor fits perfectly in the gap between the floor and elevator. As we checked out of the hotel, they said they would call the elevator people and then overnight the phone to the other hotel on Manhattan — such good service. Here would be a good time to thank Pamela and her roommate Larry. Pamela paid for the rooms (4 nights, at two hotels) and Larry works at a hotel chain and got Pamela a great rate at each hotel we stayed. Thanks guys! We then took the Long Island trains system to Manhattan and checked into our hotel in Madison Square Garden, for 3 nights.

marketThe next two days we went all over the island. Pamela is vegan so I was exposed to many of NYC’s vegan restaurants. Ann had to have authentic NYC style thin crust pizza. I had to go to the bakery I saw on FoodTV. My cousins “musts” were wonderful. I was disappointed in my “must,” because on TV the cookies were huge — they must have embellished when the cameras were on them; in the store they were half the size as when on TV (still big, but not as impressive). Over the whole trip we went to Chelsea Market (FoodTV headquarters), walked over the Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, central park, Time Square, went to a few bars/clubs, saw many of its districts, and just went all over the island. It was a nice trip, we ate a lot of really good food — and my wallet reflects that.

bridgeThe last day we went and got brunch at a restaurant we found in the Village called Cafeteria (don’t let the name fool you — it is a fantastic modern American establishment). Then my cousins went to JFK to catch their mid-day flight to Utah. My flight was later at 7pm, so I hung around the city until 5pm. I’m not telling you what I did because I have to keep some mystery about myself; but I will tell you I ended up in Brooklyn for 3 hours.

I know think I know NYC pretty good. I can get around without a map, know the general subway lines, and even know what trains go to what stations. I think I could live in NYC; but do I want to? If I got a job here, then I think I would — otherwise it is just nice to visit.


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