Wednesday, September 11, 2013

New York City, Baby!

Okay. So - friends and family have been asking me how I enjoyed my recent trip to New York. Being the country gal that I am, you might assume I'd be totally out of my element. To be honest, I was nervous. This was a city that never sleeps and much more fast paced than ~laughs~ down south. But I could not have been more wrong. I loved it so much. So much so, I thought I'd share it with you all. 

For those who know me, I never travel. This all changed in 2011 when I started writing and met some wonderful people who I am blessed to know. I had been content with my life up to that point. Working during the week...writing every chance I got, and on occasions I hung out with my friends on the weekends, doing the norm - to the casinos to support a local band...and throw in a club now and then for some dancing. Life was GREAT, right?

Who knew - fate had many awaited adventures for me. LOL. All I had to do was jump - well, actually fly. ~shudders~ 

As in...I DON'T FLY. hahaha But I couldn't allow that one obstacle ~and it was a big one  - mind you~ to get in the way of opening new stages in my life. 

Which brings me to this trip. In two years, I have been to Washington D.C. (October 2011) and this past weekend, New York City. I have fallen in love! Yes, this southern gal has fallen madly in love with the north. Who knew!

Okay - let me start from the beginning...

Thursday, September 5th , 2013
I arrived at the airport two hours before my flight. Departure for my round trip airfare was supposed to be 7:30pm. However, there was a one hour flight delay. ~laughs~ Yes...I was nervous flying already and now my flight was delayed? LOL Not the way I wanted to start my trip, let me tell you. ~giggles...yes I can laugh about it now though~

Finally, after boarding on the plane at 8:20pm thanks to local flight attendants who were off duty and volunteered to get on our flight so the plane could leave, which would have been another 45 minutes if they hadn't, I arrived at LaGuardia a little after midnight. Luckily, I had arranged to have a driver pick me up and even with the delay - he was there waiting...all smiles and welcomed me to New York. LOL

So - I guess it was about a 30 minute drive and my luxurious white limo arrived at the hotel - Le Parker Meridien.  It was beautiful! If you ever come to New York and want car transportation, I highly recommend Luxor Limo. Being my first trip for NY, I did go the "extra" mile and treat myself. It was so worth it. The driver helped me out and assisted with my luggage. I felt like royalty. LOL At the hotel, I was met by the doorman who assisted with my luggage and escorted me to the room where my two friends had already arrived. I was so excited to see them, I couldn't stand it. LaVerne was there and a friend of hers, Phyllis, who after meeting her for the first time, loved her. She was a hoot.

After we caught up - talked about the flight and the beauty of the skyline coming into the city - I almost got them to get out of their pj's and head down for a night cap - LOL - but yeah - it was after 1AM  by then. LOL  So we just ended up crashing for the night. I couldn't wait to see what the next day had in store. I was already blown away by New York and I had just arrived.

Friday, September 6th, 2013
7:30am (6:30 am, my time back home) and surprisingly we were all up at the same time. Got dressed, and in our comfortable shoes, headed down where a friend of ours,VR, who lives in New Jersey, met us in the hotel lobby. I couldn't wait to see her, too! ~big smile~ Once the four of us were together - we hit the town. 


We headed to a very cute and quaint place called Buvette in West Village. 

I had Croissants with butter and OMG the best raspberry jam I have EVER had in my life! If you don't believe me ask Phyllis. LOL. She almost tackeled the waiter when he tried to take hers away from her. hahahahahaha ~winks~

Then I ordered the Americiane, which was fabulous. It was a sunny-side up egg (I had them cook hard) - mixed with bacon and peppers and laid across some fabulous toast. It was to die for. 

I'd bet everything on the menu is fab though.

Once our bellies were full of goodness - we took a cab toward 34th Street - Yes, the movie Miracle on 34th Street came to mind. The next time I watch it, it will have a whole new meaning to me. We stopped in front of Macy's on 151 W. 34th Street. It was gorgeous!  Puts my Macy's back home to shame. LMAO. 

Looking around, I could actually picture the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade coming down the street. All I needed was me some Matt Lauer. HAHAHA 

Before we went into Macy's for some shopping, I had to stop and take in the Empire State Building.  It was overwhelming. Seeing it in person - well...

I live in Memphis, so we have what I thought were tall buildings downtown, but when my eyes looked upon New York's skyscrapers, I truly had no words. To see these buildings on TV - for example watching 'An Affair to Remember' with Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr, if you aren't amazed at just gazing at such architectural wonder - I don't know what will. At least I was moved. It's the history of it all I guess. 

Well...after we did some shopping and walked around a few blocks sight seeing. Here are a few places we hit along the way. LOL


This was so amazing and yet overwhelming at the same time. Just standing there a strange feeling overcomes you. It is unexplainable.

These are 'wings' that will be front and center to the Freedom Tower once it is complete. 

        Stock Exchange                                        Wall Street & Broadway LOL

Around two o'clock that afternoon we hit the Trans and Subway and headed to Newark, New Jersey. Yep...we went clear across town to see none other than The Chronicles of Riddick 3   Movie was at four o'clock...And man was it worth it!

Who doesn't love some VIN DIESEL!  OMG. The movie was good, but what made it better was the company of good friends and the bad ass place VR took us to. It was an AMC Dine In Theater. Why in the WORLD we don't have these in Memphis, I'll never know. But I need to have a talk with someone to get these bad-boys in our city. LMAO. It rocked and they served alcohol...hahahaha I had a Hurricane, myself. ~snickers~

After the movie, we headed back to New York and the hotel. We got ready and all four of us went to 230-Fifth. It is by far one of the coolest bars I've ever been to. An outdoor rooftop bar, club & restaurant. The skyline with the Empire State Building was breathtaking. 

Saturday, September 7th, 2013
Up and at it early again this morning, today was gonna be another full day on the agenda. We started off going shopping this morning. I shocked myself and actually purchased some shoes at Barneys. LMAO. I had to have some Christian Louboutin black suede Melisa Booty for the fall. OMG. I love them! 

We had a late lunch at the hotel. Norma's - One of the top rated places to eat. However, I must be honest and say the service was not as one would expect having a $25 four-cheese omelet. Personally, my food was good, maybe not worth $25 bucks, but a friend had asked for her eggs to be cooked 'hard' and after two trips back, still runny. How can a place that has a $1000 omelette with $995 worth of caviar NOT be able to cook a 'hard' egg. LMAO  I'm just sayin' But that was our experience.

Then - Thanks to VR and her mad skills of the city, we took a cab and headed to catch the Staten Island Ferry so we could get a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty. 

On the way, by cab, I caught both Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges.

Staten Island Ferry - We headed from Whitehall Street in lower Manhattan to St. George St. on Staten Island. Then headed back to Manhattan. 

It was a great ride and you couldn't ask for a more beautiful day to ride the ferry. The views from the ferry were incredible.


After the ferry docked - we took a cab back to the hotel. We had dinner reservations at The View on Broadway. 48 stories tall - The restaurant's revolving floor makes a 360 degree turn every hour. The 3-course meal was spectacular. 

 (Left: My main course - pork chop dinner yummm nummm LOL - Right: revolving rooftop view at dinner)

Once we indulged in our wonderful meal, we headed down to Times Square on our way to the Majestic Theater for The Phantom of the Opera. 

We ended our extraordinary evening by heading to Salon De Ning at The Peninsula New York  in Mid-town Manhattan with its beautiful rooftop lounge looking down over Fifth Avenue.

Alas we said our goodbyes on Sunday and headed home. 

I had such a great time...I must admit - this will not be my last trip to New York!
I hope you enjoyed reading about my journey. 

Feel free to comment - and if you'd been to New York, I'd love to hear your favorite places.