I love New York.
Have I mentioned that yet?
I’m actually writing this on the subway during a 3am journey back to Brooklyn that has the misfortune of being on a local train. In other words this means I could probably travel the width of England in the time it will now take me to get home.
Anyway. The Tshirts don’t lie, IheartNY. I’ve had a particularly joyful weekend so far of being reunited with several old friends and I do feel like having this city as a backdrop for our reconvening really does make for happy times.
On Friday I got taken for a lovely brunch with the even lovelier Kathy- one of the nurses from Camp when I was there in 2009. She lives in the middle class haven of Brooklyn Heights- a suburb immersed in equal parts Brownstone Apartments to picturesque tree lined streets. We visited her gorgeous house before catching up over coffee and the classic New York Brunch as if no time had past between us all. Wonderful.
After a brief shopping spree at Target (soap dish, anyone?) I spent the evening with a friend Fran, who I haven’t seen in about 2 years. She’s an air hostess who happened to be in the city for a night. Well. If there was ever an excuse for a Hilton based pyjama/wine party this was surely it. A fabulous evening ensued of catching up on everything, sampling some 42nd St Italian delicacies and generally putting the world to right over some lovely BA bottles of wine. I spent a night of luxury with her and left armed with all the hotel freebies I could carry. No shame.
Tonight saw me venture out to the hipster district of Williamsburg, Brooklyn for the first time. My mission was to meet Elana (of tea and cookies fame) and her friends to celebrate her Birthday at the renowned Brooklyn Bowl- a delighfully trendy fusion of reasonable priced beer, quintessential bowling and a great dance floor. Now, without my trusty sidekick Google Maps I am as good as useless navigating myself around the city. Of course it was tonight, when I forgot to check which stop to get off at, that Google Maps failed. Cue 5 minutes of panic (in a well lit place) trying to remain anonymous and look “local.” Clearly I’ve spent too much time in East London as my attempt to look normal worked and myself and my, eventually working, Blackberry continued on our quest to the venue. I arrived to find that age old American sting of a cover charge waiting for me and I explained to the bouncer I was just going to try and get hold of my friend, to make sure she was actually there before I paid. Of course this is when the Blackberry failed (again) and I was left awkwardly standing outside for a good 5 minutes unable to contact anyone. Nightmare, I hear you empathise but no, in this case it was the best thing to happen to me. Maybe it was the blonde hair, maybe (/probably) it was the British accent but soon enough the bouncer reemerged, stamped my wrist and told me to “go and find your friends.” WELL OK THEN! Don’t mind if I do save myself $8. Thanks nice bouncer man! Once inside I opted for beer which I don’t actually like but happened to be the cheapest drink on the menu and set about finding Elana and consequently having a fabulous time with her and her friends! There was even “hip hop karaoke” to keep us amused. What makes tonight even better is that another long lost camp friend turned Canadian resident Adam is also in town for a few months so he came down too and we shared stories of love, life and laughter of the last 4 years. My throat is sore from so much talking and I’m in a state of happy delirium from the novelty of not only making new friends, but reinstating old ones.
As the night drew to a close, three of us newly acquainted companions were walking back to the Subway and it was decided that I should sample Brooklyn Pizza which, allegedly, is like no other. Ever sceptical I agreed and OMIGOSH. Best. Pizza. Ever. Myself and Julie were treated to some kind of cheesey, spinachy affair which was just delicious. And, for New York, an absolute steal at $2.50 a slice. Definite must do for tourists and locals alike. It’s made this epic train journey home that bit more bearable.
So there you have it, an insight into 24 hours (ish) in New York.
Is there really anywhere else you would rather be at 23?!