NY City Weekend


Chris, Carol, and I made a long weekend at the end of April 1985 in New York City. We bused from Catonsville Community College to the Shelburne Hotel in Manhattan. Dr. Fedder, art teacher at the college and arranger of this trip, informed us that the Roosevelts had a two room apartment at the Shelburne.

We arrived about 11:30 on Friday morning. We quickly unpacked and left for lunch at a Jewish deli on Madison Ave. From there we took NYC bus—next time I will have to bring a roll of quarters—to the Guggenheim. Although I enjoyed the structure, I can’t say I enjoyed the Giggleheim.

We walked by uniformed Catholic grade schoolers playing catch on the sidewalk to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Outstanding sights in the Met: the quiet room of string musical instruments, then the cathedral-size organ overlooking the metallic armory, an arresting hall featuring a plenitude of pastels by the Impressionists, lunch, at the next table was the head curator of the Met!, stained glass, the wonderful sitting garden adjacent to the Colonial building.

We walked back to our hotel, window-shopping and people-watching so intently that we didn’t care that we suffered from Manhattan Foot. After showers and rest we ventured to a Chinese restaurant where the Mai Tais were so strong that my cherry got drunk and sunk to the bottom. Then Carol, being all of nine years old, ate the cherry. She was tipsy the rest of the evening.

Late night Friday I watched classic rock videos, like Donovan singing ‘Atlantis’. Saturday late – The Untouchables seemed very appropriate for NYC.

Saturday morning found us up early. By 10 we sat in a small coffee shop awaiting our eggs and pancakes. We made the short walk to the UN complex, wearing jackets—it was breezy and cool. We saw a Russian statue of a plowman and a lovely lane of cherry blossoms. And strangely a huge fountain of water spouting 70 or 80 feet above the East River. The tour was well worth it. We learned that our weekend trip was actually an international journey—the UN being located in 81, international zone. We saw the marvelous meeting halls that the Scandinavian countries donated to the world organization.

We stumbled upon the J. Pierpont Morgan Museum/Library, which we enjoyed very much. I especially liked the original manuscripts of musical masterpieces and the three-tiered library. We also went to see the Empire State Building, but the line to ascend it was so long, a quarter-of-mile underground, that we decided against it.

In the early afternoon we ventured to the Macy and Gimbels stores. I realized then that for traveling the American Express card is honored more places. And that I should have more cash for lunch-type meals.

Saturday evening, after spending too much money, we got in to see Brighton Beach Memoirs. It was an excellent show for me, fairly good for Chris, and we’re afraid Carol aged from 9 to 11 just during that performance. Afterwards we taxied back to the Shelburne.

Sunday morning we had a bit of trouble finding a coffee shop that was open. Finally we found a shop in the mid 50s on Madison. They didn’t even have printed receipts but wrote on blank chits. I don’t believe they charged tax. I do know they didn’t accept credit cards and they had excellent breakfasts.

Carol on a schist rock in Central Park
Carol on schist boulder in Central Park

We walked up to Central Park where Carol rode the carousel and I watched the softball games. It amazed me that they accepted the overlapping scopes of their games. Sitting or, the park benches we experienced a NYC earthquake—subways rumbling under the streets.

We enjoyed the gem room and The Living Planet film on the 55 foot tall screen in the Natural History Museum. We bought T-Shirts here and souvenirs everywhere.

Walking thru the throngs at the base of the park, we came upon a very impressive sight. A dozen 50 story skyscrapers in a row.

After much too long, we sat down to eat at David Copperfield’s Pub. Sunday special was prime rib—very good, with English rolls. Chris got English trifles for dessert—sort of a tart in a glass.

The bus ride home was long and relaxing.

Writing

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