My mother, my Tantine and I made our way into the city to walk along the high line, it was the perfect day to do so, it was around 73 degrees, breezy and as you can see, sunny, it made for some very lovely pictures. The high line runs from 30th Street and 10th Avenue all the way down to Gansvoort Street near the meat packing district. We didn’t walk the whole way, we entered at 30th and exited at 23rd Street, it still made for a nice promenade in the city. My Tantine enjoyed the high line, a little getaway in the heart of the city, she found it very charming.
This trip was during the week I couldn’t do chemo because my platelet count was way too low and what a great trip it was. My husband and I took advantage of the great variety of fantastic food available all around our favorite hotel. I took the opportunity of my great vantage point to take pictures, these are taken from the 30th floor, New York never gets old. One of my favorite moments during our little trip is the dinner we had at Vesso’s Italian restaurant. We had a spectacular large thin crust pizza and then being gluttonous we ordered another large thin crust pizza to go and bring back to the room. It was still early, we had the first pie during the early bird special dinner time. I love the blue haired eating schedule, it allows for even more eating later on in the day. Lol.
My husband after 25 years still manage to have fun together no matter where we are or what we are plotting to do.
I was on the upper roadway of the 59th Street bridge when I took the funky shots, I was pretty much at a stop or so I thought, I wonder if by inching forward a little bit, did my cellphone compensate and give me that pretty sky? I love the sky’s color, it is a mixture of dark blue, red and maybe some pinks, I’m not sure but I love the effect.
I was thrown back in time while driving over the bridge, I used to take the bridge when I was in my early twenties to go hang out with my buddy Phil downtown at Astor Place, smoking a cigarette with the windows open, listening to Simon and Garfunkel or Simply Red or Tracy Chapman, good times.
The constant between tonight and over twenty years ago is the gorgeous New York City skyline, I find that comforting.
My mother and I walked around Union Square for a bit and then we meandered up to Bed Bath and Beyond located on 6th avenue and 21st Street. The sky was glorious and since I won’t be back to New York for at least a good six weeks, I wanted to take a few pictures to look at and cheer myself up with, New York with blue skies is always a lovely sight.
If you look at the stark difference in the sky between my pictures, the ones looking uptown towards an icy blue sky and then the ones looking downtown towards a practically white sky, I’m not sure if that was the effect from the reflection of the sun against my cellphone or if it was something else. Whatever it was, it did make for a wild look for the Freedom Tower in the backdrop from Fifth avenue.
My last hurrah in the Big Apple, you can feel the brisk cold from yesterday emanating from the way the New Yorkers are carrying themselves. I love seeing energy in my pictures, it brings them to life.
Today my husband and I walked along 7th avenue downtown, many tourists had the same idea, I love seeing tons of tourists in New York City walking around and appreciating the city I grew up in as did my husband. As you can imagine, I wasn’t the only one with my cellphone out, aimed up and all around, taking advantage of the gorgeous day to take pictures. Walking was a little challenging with the many stops and starts, not by me, but by many others in front of us and to our side. Today it was a good idea to be aware of where you were in relation to your surroundings, there is a big difference when you walk amongst crowds of tourists than when you walk amongst die hard New Yorkers.
I was taken aback by this rosebush, I had just missed its blooms, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to capture its remaining petals, just look at how healthy its leaves are and their gorgeous deep green color. This is a welcome to 2016 I can embrace, I adore roses.
Stills from my hotel room, we are back at the InterContinental, we were two blocks away from the New Year’s Eve Rocking Party, we got to see a sliver of the lights and confetti, it was nice from the quiet of our room. I like being an old fuddy duddy on New Year’s Eve, it has become a tradition, watching the festivities from the comfort of my bed. Lol
Balducci’s was a landmark store in the West Village when I was growing up, it had closed down several years ago which was so sad, it was a treasure trove of beautiful produce, French cheeses and Italian cured meats, we loved shopping there when I was young. So imagine my delight when I saw the name on this newish building, after I took the picture, my husband and I went inside and we were disappointed, instead of a exciting market, it is more like an expensive delicatessen, with ready made sandwiches and sushi. However the building did make for some nice pictures.
I was going to write that there is no place like New York City during the holiday season, but I haven’t spent the holiday season anywhere else, so I don’t really know. However New York City is most definitely something during Christmas time; and walking around the city watching the maintenance men string up lights, erect scaffolding to support the annual Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center and put up all other types of beautiful decorations, it definitely put me a festive mood and a bit excited for Christmas this year.
New York City looked especially sparkly on this day I was visiting so in between the outdoor sculptures and the beautiful decorating, I really enjoyed my day in New York. Which should be old hat by now, you would think, I really love New York.
We came to New York and stayed with my mother, my mother and I popped into New York City for a quick errand. That is the beauty of where she lives, a trip into New York City just to buy sea scallops takes all of a couple of hours, including 30 blocks of walking, we love to walk and try to get in 10,000 steps as often as possible.
We got back to her house and we made a nice dinner for ourselves. She had a ratatouille already ready from the other day, she reheated it and also made quinoa, which was added to the ratatouille. I tried to sear the sea scallops, didn’t quite get the sear I wanted, I think because I chose the wrong pan, I used a Teflon pan when I should have used a stainless steel pan. I also didn’t let the pan get hot enough I think, though I did get a light caramelization on them.
I put them aside while I made the sauce, which is the same sauce I make for a lot of different things that call for a sauce. I finely chopped four shallots and sauteed them until they were nice and soft in grapeseed oil, after that I turned up the heat to high, then added about 1/4 of white wine and about 2 tablespoons of white vinegar and let it reduce until it became syrupy. I turned the heat down to med-low and this is when I added a half-pint of heavy cream and gently let it heat up, I added salt and pepper.
Since I didn’t cook the sea scallops all the way through on purpose, because I wanted to add them back into the sauce, I deliberately had them on the side because I knew they would give up some nice juices to add to the sauce.
My mother and I shared a lovely meal of sea scallops in a shallot cream sauce with quinoa and ratatouile. I didn’t take any pictures because I was caught up in the moment of cooking and talking with my mother, it was really nice to cook for her, at least partially.
My mother and I decided to meet at 60 East 42nd Street, right across the street from Grand Central. I was twenty minutes early, so I took the opportunity to take pictures of the beautiful historic Grand Central terminal with the magnificent Chrysler Building in the background. I couldn’t resist taking a picture of the Pershing Square Cafe, the building originally had housed a tourist information burea which had been there forever, I remember giving the tourist bureau a passing glance each time I passed by, but I had never set foot in it. I don’t know when it was transformed into a cafe, but I am sure there have been thousands of satisfied diners since its transformation because if you look at the sign, it does say that it is the busiest and best place for breakfast in all of New York City.
We weren’t interested in breakfast, we were interested in lunch and specifically thin crust pizza if I am going to be precise; I had done my research and I told my mother that we needed to walk downtown towards 32nd Street and Lexington Avenue to an Italian restaurant called Vezzo’s. My research paid off because we ate the best thin crust pizza that either of us had tasted in a long, long time. We ordered two personal pizzas, one with mushrooms and one plain, we split them evenly down the middle and there was nothing left on either of our plates. The crust was so thin and crispy, the sauce was beautifully seasoned and there was the perfect amount of cheese and enough mushrooms, the portion was just enough, neither too much nor too little. I have to write a little blurb on their website asking them to open a Vezzo’s in Astoria, Queens, that pizza is a keeper! I have to perfect my pizza dough even more to figure out how to get it that thin, because when it is that thin, it gets crispy on its own.
After lunch we walked down to Union Square and then back up to the Flatiron district with a spin around 6th Avenue, within the vicinity of the early twenties is the home of three gorgeous buildings that I have always admired.
All in all we almost walked the 10,000 steps recommended by health experts, we were short by a couple of hundred steps, I might have gotten them in later because I left my mother at the subway station at 23rd Street and Fifth Avenue and I walked back to where we are staying, 29th Street and 8th Avenue.
We did luck out today for our little walkabout, the weather was infinitely more pleasant than yesterday, a civilized 82 as opposed to a sweaty 90 plus of yesterday.
My feet are a little bit unhappy right now. They’ll get over it.
Today the three of us spent several hours in New York, my husband had a few meetings so Jack and I were on our own. That is never a bad thing in New York City. Jack was fine while the three of us were together walking up Ninth Avenue; I made sure to take a picture of the apartment building where we used to live in Hell’s Kitchen, the neighborhood no longer suits its name, it has become trendy over the past ten years, but as I was saying, Jack was fine with the three of us walking, but as soon as we parted ways with my husband, poor little Jack was a trembling basket case.
I decided to take Jack to Bryant Park to cheer him up; Bryant Park is one of my favorite places to visit, I hadn’t realized just how people friendly it was as opposed to dog friendly. Jack was walking sniffing and looking longingly at the pristine lawn but it clearly stated “Please keep off the lawn” Jack and I walked all around the park and I took pictures of carousel, all of the beautiful tulips and daffodils and then I made sure to take a few pictures of one of my favorite restaurants that I used to bring the kids to when we used to spend a lot of time in New York City.
Since we weren’t having the best time in Bryant Park, Jack couldn’t frolic about, I decided to bring Jack to Central Park so that he could frolic there. Jack and I walked up Sixth Avenue, he was making me laugh because he kept on sniffing men’s trouser pants searching for his papa; a few of the men were jumped on by Jack, I am happy to say that no one minded, Jack is a cutie.
When we got to Central Park, there were quite a few things that absolutely needed to be photographed, the blue sky against the skyscrapers mixed in with the beauty of nature, made for scenes that I tried to capture, I hope that I did the real world justice. I did get all excited over a beaver sighting, I took the best picture I could, but I’m not sure that you can adequately see it. He definitely was a fatty, he fit right in with the chubby squirrels running all around him. The last thing that I wanted to pay homage to was my pair of shoes; I love my shoes, they are exquisitely comfortable and bring me where I need to go, they deserve a picture.
What a day and an adventure.