The Big Juicy Apple
I had to travel to New York City last week to attend the Society of Cosmetic Chemists’ annual scientific meeting. Since this was the third time I have been sent to NYC on business, and Jason has never traveled with me, we decided to remedy that this trip. Jason was very excited to tag along to the big apple, especially since he’s never been to NY. We wanted to make sure we had adequate time to explore Manhattan so we stayed a few extra days after my seminar to sightsee and visit with our friends the Rowleys, who currently live in New Jersey.
Though we were only out in NY for a week, we packed our days and managed to experience a lot. We went shopping on Fifth Avenue and at 34 Street’s famous Macy’s. We wandered through Time Square and Central Park. We also visited the Rockefeller Center. At the Rock we saw its legendary Christmas tree all lit up, ate dinner at a restaurant directly adjacent to the skating rink (It was super yummy!), and toured NBC’s studios. Because we did the NBC tour on Saturday we were able to see more studios than average, four in total, including the one where SNL is filmed. The SNL studio was in the process of being set up for the show that night; one of the actors was present and we all stared at him through the glass but honestly I can’t say I have any idea who he was. I was really hoping we would run into Taylor Lautner, Mr. Jacob Black himself. He was hosting SNL that evening and was somewhere in the building getting ready for dress rehearsal. But alas, fate was not on our side and we saw no trace of him. Sigh. Despite the absence of a Taylor sighting we thoroughly enjoyed hanging at the Rock, especially since it made us feel a little like being on 30 Rock, one of our favorite TV shows.
The Rockefeller Center wasn’t the only site we visited in NY that rocked however. We visited the Museum of Modern Art and viewed an unbelievable number of famous paintings from Picasso, Matisse, Dali, Andy Warhol, Pollock, and van Gogh…just to name a few. My absolute favorite painting at the MoMA, and one of the highlights of my trip, was van Gogh’s Starry Night. I had no idea that painting was even here in America so when I randomly came across it in a gallery at the MoMA I was surprised and thrilled. Seeing van Gogh’s brushstrokes up close added a whole new dimension to one of my most loved paintings. It was incredible! The MoMA also had a limited-time Tim Burton exhibit on display. It was full of his artwork and sculptures and props from his movies. Jason thought it was fantastic!
As cool as the MoMA was, it’s just one of many awesome museums in NYC. We went to the Museum of Natural History with the Rowleys and even though we spent a whole day there we could have spent many more. The exhibits seemed to go on and on. Although we only saw a fraction of the museum, we enjoyed what we did see.
New York City doesn’t just have tremendous museums though; the cuisine options there are nearly limitless. We took on the task of sampling as much as we could. (It’s a hard job but someone’s got to do it.) We ate at the Carnegie Deli a couple times (best pickles ever), Ray’s Pizza, an Ethiopian restaurant, and Ninja New York. Ninja New York was Jeremy Rowley’s restaurant pick. At the Ninja much of the menu is served set ablaze and Ninja’s jump out and scare you periodically. It was a fun experience and the food was pretty tasty.
Of course, a trip to NY is not complete without attending a Broadway show. Jason and I went to Wicked and absolutely loved it; it was definitely worth the ticket price.
In addition to all the amazing sites Jason and I saw together, Jason had a few of his own New York moments. While I was at my seminar he hung out with Jeremy quite a bit. They visited Chinatown and Little Italy, ate at the oldest pizza place in the U.S., perused the world famous Midtown Comics bookstore, pushed pigeons off the Empire State Building, and visited the New York Public Library. At the library they felt compelled to reenact scenes from Ghostbusters and The Day After Tomorrow, which apparently required sneaking into sections that were not open to the public. Those bad boys!
Even though there is more than plenty to see in NYC we made sure we left some time for playing games with the Rowleys. After all, no one wants to see a grown man cry especially if that grown man is crying because he didn’t get enough board game action. Actually, Jeremy pretty much insured that ample board games would be played by trapping us in his house for a couple nights…I mean letting us stay with them a couple nights. Just kidding; we really appreciated the Rowley’s hospitality and had a blast spending time with them. Thanks guys!
We had a great time! We enjoyed visiting with friends and chillin’ in New York City! But…this trip made me realize with 100% certainty what I have always suspected: I am not cut out for the big city life. Crowds of people everywhere, congested traffic that never eases, skyscrapers that block out the sun…I was extremely happy to see my snow covered Rockies through the plane window as we descended into Salt Lake City. Their graceful open slopes meant I was home. Loved to see you New York but wouldn’t want to be you!