Remembering NYC 2011 (by Carmen)
I had to go back to New York City. After having visited many of the major cities of Europe and Asia, it was a shame to have missed out on New York. So last August, Nathan and I made time to visit friends and family there. And it was awesome. This post is about remembering the good times we had last year and naming the reasons why we simply had to return during our year off.
First of all, there’s the transportation. Most of the United States is fully reliant on their cars to get anywhere. But NYC is one of the few places where transit takes over. It’s wonderful to see the diversity of people on the subway and buses. Another great thing is that all of these people are unafraid to walk. In the US people generally don’t like walking more than 5-8 minutes to get anywhere. New Yorkers walk for miles, and quickly too. Nathan was loving the famously fast pace of New York sidewalks – which is really what he considers to be his relaxed stroll. Together we joined the walking masses, from Lower Manhattan to Midtown, from Chelsea to Lower East Side. One of our favorite walks, though, is across the Brooklyn Bridge.
Then there’s the delicious food. New York is known for having any cuisine you can imagine being served within its limits. We hit just a small sampling of its restaurants and street snacks. Some of the best eats are highlighted in these pictures: 1) a lox bagel at Russ and Daughters, which Anthony Bourdain recommended as an absolute must try in New York (we agree); 2) a perfectly cooked burger and sandwich at Prune, owned by the author of the great memoir Blood, Bones and Butter; 3) eastern Chinese style handmade noodles in a spicy beef broth at Xi’an Famous Foods; 4) Nathan relaxing with his mango and chile paleta (popsicle) served by the La Newyorkina in High Line Park. There were many more great things we ate but we knew we were only scratching the surface.
And, of course, the architecture was everything we hoped for. The famous high rises stacked against one another. This density of brick, iron and cement opens up into little breathing pockets in the vibrant plazas and parks dotted around the city. Every other block had some interesting building to look at.
On top of all that, New York offers a ton of cultural experiences – music, theater, galleries, museums. On this trip, Nathan and I took advantage of the museums with visits to the Guggenheim, Museum of Modern Art, Museum of the American Indian, and even small exhibits such as that of Trinity Church on Wall Street. At the last one, they had this ten dollar bill cut out that Nathan proudly took his portrait with. This picture just hit my funny bone. I could not stop laughing! So much so that the security guard came over to check things out. It still makes me giggle – I think it’s the ‘stache : )
But the best part about New York is the friends and family who live there and welcome us with open arms. Andrew and Taylor showed us such a great time with a walk though Central Park, drinks at cool bars and chill nights in playing boardgames. The trip would not have been the same without them!
And my dear cousin Adri, who is teaching while getting her master’s degree (wow!) was game enough to travel all the way to Coney Island to dip our toes in the water and eat Russian dumplings. She even shared her mango flower she bought on the boardwalk. That’s love.
So what I’m really trying to say here is that last summer Nathan and I joined the millions in saying, “I ♥ NY.” We couldn’t resist a second trip, which Nathan will cover in the next post.