Monday, July 21, 2014

New York: Day Three

Remember that time I went to New York with my mom and blogged about the first two days but completely forgot to post about the last one?  Yeah, me either. ;)

In case you've forgotten where we've been so far, go here to read about Day One (Greenwich Village, Chelsea, and the High Line) and here to read about Day Two (9/11 memorial, the financial district, Little Italy/Chinatown, tea at the Plaza, WICKED!).

{Day Three: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Central Park, and Rockefeller Center} 

The only thing my mom felt really strongly about doing in New York was going to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Art is her thing (though it is definitely not mine), and I wanted to be sure we'd have plenty of time to see everything she wanted to see.  So on our last full day in New York, we got up and had more bagels, and then headed straight to the museum.  I adored the stroll through the upper east side -- the buildings were beautiful (as to be expected), and everything was bright and cheery.

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When we got to the steps at the entrance to the Met, I had to stop and snap a touristy picture of Mom.

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... and then I did the same thing once we got to the Monet water lily paintings, which were her favorite.

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Since I'm not super artsy, most of what we saw was completely lost on me. But I did really love the Van Goghs...

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... and the Faberge...

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... and the Louis Comfort Tiffany stained glass.

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For lunch, Mom grabbed a hot dog and I got a gyro from the street vendors at the Met entrance, and we ate on the steps like true tourists.  There was a live band playing for tips, and we had such a great time soaking up the sunshine and listening to the music.

After lunch, it was time to head to Central Park.  If you're new around here, you probably wouldn't know that strolling through Central Park (again) is the very first item on my 30 Before 30 list.

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Crossing it off was so wonderful, as Central Park is one of my favorite places on the planet.  I can't explain why, but it just feels magical to me.  So we spent a lot of time there and covered a lot of ground.

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(Belvedere Castle)

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Our next stop was St. Patrick's Cathedral, which I had been dreaming of seeing again since my first trip to NYC.  Unfortunately, the entire thing, outside and in, was covered in scaffolding for restoration.  It was such a letdown, especially I had been telling my mom how beautiful it was.  But we saw it, scaffolding and all, and it worked out perfectly because our roundabout trek there ended up taking us through some fun, little, quiet places.

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(Grand Central Station)

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(Taking a much needed Starbucks break)

Plus, as we were headed back down 5th Avenue, we spotted the signs directing tourists to the Observation Deck at the top of Rockefeller Center.  This was something I had put on our "hope we can do while we're in NY" list, and we had the time, so we decided to go up.

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I'm not sure why I envisioned that we'd just hop on an elevator at our leisure and head straight to the top of one of the tallest buildings in New York without a hitch, but I highly underestimated what a tourist trap the whole thing was.  First, we waited in line to buy tickets (for a certain time, which meant we had to sit around and kill time for 20 minutes).  Then, we waited in line to go up a couple of floors to the real line, where we sat for about 45 minutes, zigzagging through various videos about NBC and Rockefeller Center.  Then, just as we got to the front of the line to head up the elevator to the top, two guides came out and told us that they'd be issuing refunds for everyone because the visibility from the top was down to nothing because of the rain but that we could still go up anyway if we wanted to.


Since we were leaving the next morning, I told my mom that I wanted to go ahead and go up.  Because why not?

So we did.

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And it was totally worth it.

Granted, we had to elbow our way to a window so we could get a peek (the majority of the "deck" was enclosed, and the rain made going outside unpleasant (although I did it!).  But whatever.  It was amazing to see the city from this perspective.  (My mom probably doesn't agree since she's afraid of heights, but she was such a good sport about it anyway.)

After the Rockefeller Center debacle, we were seriously spent.  We headed back to the hotel for a final afternoon nap (glorious, by the way).  For dinner, I had hoped we could score a last-minute reservation somewhere delicious, so I surveyed my Facebook friends for a recommendation.  Unfortunately, everything that was suggested was booked, so we ended up at a casual (but LOUD) Thai place by our hotel.  It was good, but not great.  But the fabulous company made up for the mediocre food. :)

After the utter failure at Times Square the night before, we had planned on going back so that my Mom could see it all a little better.  But she looked at me during dinner and just said, "I wouldn't be sad if we just went back to the hotel and had a quiet night in, but I'll go back if you want to!"  I had never heard more beautiful words in my life, so we packed it up, hightailed it back to the hotel, and fell asleep almost as soon as our heads hit the pillow.

As we were getting all of our stuff gathered to head to the airport the next morning, I started feeling all sappy about what a blessing it was to have been able to spend so much uninterrupted time with my sweet mom.  It had been a long time since we had traveled together, and I had forgotten how much fun we have.

I love you so much, Mom, and this trip meant the world to me.  Thanks so much for coming along and for making such incredible memories with me.  I can't wait to go back in ten years with Gracie and show her the magic of our New York.


Sheli Hudson said...

You made me cry, sweet girl. I can't even tell you how much I enjoyed our trip, but mostly, I enjoyed having you all to myself for a few days. NYC - 10 years - You, me and Gracie - It's a date!!!

Nichole @ said...

OMG, I assume the previous comment is your mom? I love it!! You guys are all adorable :)

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