Lost count of the number of times I’ve heard Frankie belting out this number both in New York and in Las Vegas oddly enough. Frank had a fondness for the Sin City though. But there I go on a tangent yet again. New YORK baby! I do love so much about this city and we were here for a week. And it was a veritable flurry of activity! Our first day there we checked into the Yotel. Very modern, very Japanese inspired, very furturistic feeling and although they referred to the hotel’s rooms as Cabins I do believe Pods were their ultimate aim.
The Yotel “cabins” all come with the following:
Beds with hand-made organic mattresses
Techno wall with flat screen has the ability to stream audio
Work desk with a flat screen TV with iPod/ MP3 connectivity and work desk with multi power point sockets
Free super strength WiFi and free calls within the North America
Monsoon shower, heated towel rack, and rejuvenating and relaxing body washes Complimentary tea, coffee and muffins on ‘FOUR’ every day from 7am-10am on weekdays and 7am-10.30am on weekends
That bed you see above forms your couch during the day and you press a button and it pushes out to a full size queen. Although it did feel more like just a big double to me!
So we checked in there after a flying visit to Morgan at the American Museum of Natural History where she was holding our precious Broadway tickets to see The Book of Mormon. This is a show that’s been going well over a year now, written by Trey Parker, Matt Stone (of South Park) and Robert Lopez. From Wikipedia:
“The Book of Mormon is a religious satire musical with a book, lyrics, and music by Trey Parker, Robert Lopez, and Matt Stone. Best known for creating the animated comedy South Park, Parker and Stone co-created the music with Lopez, who co-wrote and co-composed Avenue Q. The show lampoons organized religion and traditional musical theatre, reflecting the creators’ lifelong fascination with Mormonism and musicals.
The Book of Mormon tells the story of two young Mormon missionaries sent to a remote village in northern Uganda, where a brutal warlord is threatening the local population. Naïve and optimistic, the two missionaries try to share the Book of Mormon, one of their scriptures—which only one of them knows very well—but have trouble connecting with the locals, who are more worried about war, famine, poverty, and AIDS than about religion”
It’s a show I’d seen spoken of on Twitter quite a lot, several people commented on enjoying it so I decided that should be the show we get to when we did NYC. I’m so glad we did. My face was aching when we walked out because I don’t think I stopped grinning or laughing the entire length of the performance. I knew we were in for much raucous hilarity when the first act ended with the beautifully sung line of “I have maggots in my scrotum”. What can I say? Occasionally my sense of humour runs to the more crass, though I’ll admit South Park has found my limits on that line.
Anyway it was resoundingly well received by the audience and the singing was top notch, the plot, the choreography, the individual performances all first rate. I’d recommend it to anyone and also say but not for children! Drop them off at The Lion King and then have at it!
So between driving into NYC from CT, picking up the tickets for this musical and also our Bulls tickets for the next night, checking into the Yotel, finally dropping our three month car rental off and getting to the right theatre on 49th street it was a huge first day for us!
The next day we got treated to a behind the scenes tour at the American Museum of Natural History thanks to my good friend Morgan. Morgan I met last year at our very first Supernatural con held in Toronto. We’ve been in touch ever since and we also caught up again at the Vancouver Con this year. Morgan has a great job in the imaging department at the Museum and gets to do all kinds of things, as well as meet all kinds of people. We got to check out a couple of the special exhibits which were great and then got an in depth look at the various departments’ and their work.
Another outside shot…
Inside we did the Bioluminescence Exhibit and also the Global Food Exhibit…
Fishes Department… 😉
This is a defleshed baby ray…
The Lord of the Rings Department…wait a second. TIM!!! How’d the Lego shots get in??
I will say this, Lego Gollum much less menacing than Movie Gollum.
After those wonderful few hours we headed on over to Madison Square Gardens to watch the New York Knicks take on our favourites the Chicago Bulls! We were surrounded by very vocal Knicks fans but I still cheered for the Bulls!
Who from the get go never looked in danger…the difference being most of the shots the Bulls took on the net actually sunk. Lost count of the number of missed attempts on the Knicks side. It was a very entertaining game though – with three players and a coach getting ejected the crowd were on their feet on several occasions and the refs were very much despised!
Final score! And that was even with my main man Joakim Noah getting ejected…ahh such a fiery hothead he is, love his passion!
Ahh well….hope he keeps his temper enough to stay in the line up for the Bulls who look to be marching steadily towards the playoffs.
So that was an exciting end to another GREAT day in NYC!
The next day was Saturday 22nd and we decided to do a little shopping and then head to Serendipity 3 famous for it’s Frozen Hot Chocolate. Alas that place was full to the brim and with a three hour wait looming we decided to give it a miss. Instead we found this lovely little tearoom, cafe type place called Alice’s Tea Pot. Delicious tea her and some of the best scones but as Tim writes in his blog the rest of the food was just okay.
After that it was a pretty lazy day in terms of sightseeing, we headed back to our “pod” and made use of the very excellent speed wifi to get some things done online. The next morning ot was off to Bryant Park and my first experience ever ice skating on an outdoors rink!
Morgan joined us and we risked life and limb together dodging the small mobile missiles of children going sprawling in front of us on the ice, the masses of people, adapting to the lack of any kind of sharp edge on the hire skates blades and the pretty much completely chopped up ice! But it was definitely a pleasant way to spend a couple of hours! Tim spectated and took photos and minded bags.
We followed it up with lunch near Times Square at Dallas BBQ. Tim and I have this sense of impending withdrawal from the quality BBQ you can get over here in the States. In fact we’re going to look into getting a Smoker when we get back and I have high hopes that Tim’s culinary skills just might be able to replicate a little of the taste we’ve had over here.
After that it was off to Wall Street and to see where Morgan lives as she gave us a guided tour of where scenes from the latest Batman movie were filmed. We then tracked down a copy of The Dark Knight Rises and after securing drinks and snacks headed back to her apartment building where we commandeered the theatre room and watched the Dark Knight Rises and a couple of episodes of Supernatural of course! It was one of the best ways to spend a Sunday that I can imagine!
Monday the 24th! Christmas Eve! We slept in a little and then made our way to the 42nd street cinemas where Morgan treated us with our Christmas presents early and bought us all tickets to go see The Hobbit in 3d IMAX 48FPS! And what a difference it made! And I loved watching it again just as much as the first time. You can take the time to notice other things you may not have picked up on first viewing. The 48FPS took a little getting used to – as it seemed just like it had been sped up at first but soon the flow caught up and the clarity of the footage was just amazing. We then said goodbye to Morgan as she left for New Jersey to stay with her family for Christmas, we made a time to share one last meal together on Boxing day evening.
Tim and I headed out later that evening to find the giant Rockefeller Christmas tree all decked out and lit up! Everyone had the same idea it seemed. Pretty special thing to do on Christmas Eve I imagine.
So that was nice, Tim stopped at a food truck for his dinner and I grabbed a soup from a Bon Au Pain (Bakery/sandwich type chain) to warm up with. We then made our way back through the throngs of people to home, fortuitously coming across a rather excellent crepe shop on the way home that made one of the best Nutella crepes I’ve ever tried. And yes renewing my gym membership is number 2 on my list of things to do once I get home 😉
And so CHRISTMAS DAY! It dawned bright and chilly! We slept in quite late, arising mid morning to read all the posts and texts from around the world our friends had made. Australia being 12 hours ahead of course had much to say for itself and then all our American and European and Canadian friends were celebrating as well. Whilst I sense that the internet can be a purveyor of some of the most vile aspects of humanity I feel nothing but gratitude that I have been able to live in a time which has allowed me to use such technology to bring so many new and delightful people into my life. I simply want to hug it close to me. Tim had found (somewhat miraculously I felt) a Christmas day lunch buffet with all the trimmings for a measly 45 dollars each in downtown NYC at a pretty chic and happening place. The Rooftop at 230 5th Avenue. The food was excellent! The view even better!
Very impressed I was with Tim’s Christmas Day lunch sleuthing skills. I think if one could get a Masters in seeking out great food places Tim would have already jumped PhD. 😉
After lunch a fairly long stroll back to the 42nd street cinemas. Which was FULL of people. I don’t think people go to the movies Christmas Day back home. Well not many. I know Boxing Day is normally chocker block (Aussie slang there for my USian friends – meaning packed to the rafters ;)…) but I don’t think it’s really a done thing by many on Christmas Day itself. EVERYTHING was sold out nearly. We wanted to catch Django Unchained and Les Miserables. We eventually got into two evening screenings. We did a 6 hour mini movie marathon really. But they were both great films and I’m glad we got into them and also got great seats. After that it was about 1am on Boxing Day morning and by the time we got into bed nearly 2.
I still got up the next day around 9 as I wanted to hit the sales stores early and try and get all the runners I’d been intending on taking back home. Ridiculously cheap compared to Aussie prices so I just couldn’t resist. It was a very productive shopping day for gifts and shoes. The sales here, really are sales and whilst you have lots of people around there was generally no grumpiness at all from what I saw. We purchased our 4th piece of luggage as well. That evening Tim found us the Hourglass Tavern and we met up with Morgan there to have some very nicely cooked food and great service. The time flew by and then it was another goodbye as we were heading out early the next day for Las Vegas.
What a FANTASTIC 7 days it was. I really do think NYC would be on my list to have a holiday apartment in. There’s just something about a city that always has so much going on all the time. It never stops. And whether you want fine dining 4 michelin star style or just a tasty slice of pizza for 2$ it caters for every budget. I so hope we get back there one day.
Second last stop of our entire trip up next! LAS VEGAS!