Friday, March 12, 2010

Notes from the Big Apple

Well, my posh days in the heart of the theater district are at an end. I was a guest for two nights at the Sheridan Towers on 7th Avenue in Manhattan, sandwiched between Times Square and Central Park South. It was posh and spendy. You couldn't find a cheap meal other than a pretzel from a corner vendor, but the theaters and fancy restaurants were everywhere. And if the local distractions were not enough, the subway entrances were all over the place to whisk you away to wherever you wanted to go.

Now, I am in a pretty seedy part of Brooklyn in a nice room at the Holiday Inn Express with a long hike to get anywhere of interest. More on that later.

While across the East River, I took advantage of the MOMA's (Museum of Modern Art) nearby location (two blocks from the hotel) to take in an exhibit on Tim Burton which I found fascinating. I was going to go to the Museum of Sex, but got sidetracked when my youngest brother, who lives in Manhattan, called to see if I wanted to bum around SoHo and the Village.

One of my favorite things is walking around the city with my brother. He is the family historian and knows a lot of fascinating things about New York and its history. We look at buildings and he explains when they were built, the famous people who lived and died in them, off the cuff remarks like "The first elevator in the world was installed in that building by Mr. Otis." Stuff like that.

We wound up meeting an old friend of his and her husband who were in town to celebrate a birthday which took us to a pub for drinks and conversation. Later, we did more wandering, pubbing, and finally some dining where I had quite possibly the largest hamburger I have ever seen. We capped it off with some expensive single malt at a Scottish bar and restaurant before my brother headed back to home in Washington Heights, and I went around the corner to Times Square and up 7th Avenue to my hotel.

Today I made the hotel switch after zig-zagging around a four by six block area looking for a place that still served breakfast. I finally got in out of the rain at a european cafe where I had a very nice onion and lox omelet with black coffee and fruit whilst reading the NY Times. By the time I looked at the clock, I realized that I had ten minutes to get back to the hotel, pack, and check out. Needless to say, it was a rush.

Getting to my new place was deceptively easy. Out the door, turn left, left again and down the stairs to the subway where I caught the D-train all the way to Brooklyn. I got off at the nearest exit which still left me a nine block walk in the rain through a stretch where all of the storefront signs were in Arabic. Not too many white faces along the way. I finally found the hotel which seems to be parked in the middle of an area specializing in auto wreckage, construction companies, and vacant lots. Hmmmm.

The staff has been very nice however and the room and bathroom are quite nice, though a little cramped after the king sized bed was plopped down. The internet is complementary and the TV is a flat screen that is place actually in front of the bed (as opposed to being off to one side in a cabinet that prevented viewing from just about anywhere in the room) which was not the case in one of my more recent motel experiences.

Now, I am about to venture out in search of a six-pack if I can find a grocery store within walking distance. Wish me luck.


Blogger Kristie said...

Good luck. You have an abundantly adventurous spirit. That's cool. I find more and more, I was born to be a homebody, despite my youthful imaginings to the contrary.

6:35 PM, March 13, 2010  

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