The apartment I'm staying in is great. It's in a really good neighbourhood and it feels pretty buzzy as well as being safe. The place is alive with shops, restaurants, bars and New Yorkers going about their day (all this reaffirms my belief that I am a City girl through and through!).
The flight was good - but felt long! US immigration found it difficult to understand why I was heading to Canada without a job or even an idea of what I wanted to do in mind. Still, they let me in ;o) Although, they did at first ask me if I was on the school trip as a few of the people in front were!!! haha. However, I did love landing to hear that it was sunny and 21 degrees (and then immediately thought that I might not have packed quite as appropriately as I should have!).
Like proper New Yorkers, we've been heading out for food and either coffee or cocktails. Over a bagel and veggie cream cheese, we talk quantum physics psychics and ghosts (no, seriously, we do! We mix it up tho' with a bit of showbiz gossip and how much of a shame it was for Sandra Bullock that her husband was such an idiot!). We also check out the neighbourhood flea market which has some good finds.. I show lots of restraint!
After a spot of shopping in the Village and all that talk, we decide to go for it and see a psychic. I opted for a palm reading (it was the cheapest option) tho' Julia probably came out with the most from it (must be because she opted for the 2 palm and face reading!). Anyway, she told me how in previous lives, I'd been a film director, photographer and writer...cool, hey! Tho' she did also say that I'd be a really good business manager in this life...sounds a bit dullsville to me and wondered how she didn't see being a waitress, cowgirl, ice road trucker or mounty as great career choices. Best of all tho' she said I really didn't need to be working right now, hurrah!!! Haste to say, I didn't really take that all in as being genuine...ooh, she did also say I'd have two kids - a boy and a girl!!! Crikey!
We stayed in Manhatten for a cheese board and drinks - this time I try Smutty Old Brown Dog Ale...it's not bad! We learn all about Bike Polo after meeting up with Bex's friend who's over from St Louis with her boyfriend (who rocked the Bike Polo pitch) and her mate along with other folk seeing the spectacle including guys selling song birds and others just enjoying watching people fall off their bikes! So, what have I learned about Bike Polo, when you fall off your bike, you have to do a loop around the pitch before coming into play again, you're not allowed to put your feet down, you make your own polo stick and although you're not allowed to push other players...you can cuddle them (which is sort of pushing a player out the way but no hands or elbows. It's actually pretty fun to watch! Don't think I'll be playing it tho'!
We didn't stay for the whole tournament and check out the Whitney Biennial instead which was alright...a few really impressive pieces and others not so much! Mostly, I liked the photography pieces including pieces by Babette Mangolte and Curtis Mann. After the exhibition, we sit in Central Park eating ice cream and take in the views - mostly of New Yorkers enjoying the spring sunshine and of course, hip hop dancers with their boom box. Later on, we decided to check out the scene in Williamsburg which is by the waterfront in Brooklyn so great views of Manhatten. Lots of regeneration still happening there so I'm sure it'll look completely different in a few years time. All in all, it's a pretty cool and hip scene - we had really tasty pizza at a place called Fornina and got a good tip for cocktails down the road at Manhatten Inn. This turns out to be a beautiful place with a man on a piano and some seriously strong cocktails. Rebecca's friends from St Louis, Christine and Emily, join us later on and the strength of the cocktails give us some enthusiasm for... karaoke! We drank beer, sake and sang to Nancy Sinatra, Johnny Cash, Britney, Dolly, Wheatus (Teenage Dirtbag rocks!) and Salt n' Pepa's Push It amongst many others. The guys at Sing Sing Karaoke Bar had to kick us out... and we were just getting in to it and about to go crazy over St Louis' fave - Nelly and 'It's hot in here'! Disappointed not to be able to continue, we head over to a 24 hour diner to chill and have a chocolate pancake.
It's no wonder Monday was a rather more chilled affair with some shopping and no cocktails. Bex and Julia catch their flights back home and I do a bit of food shopping (not sure it's a good idea to go all out New Yorker and never eat in, it'll cost me a fortune!).
With just me for company, I kept it super chilled but did go and see Kath Bloom at a gig in Williamsburg in the eve eve - she's a little bit bluesy and country. Never heard of her before but read about it and she sounded good so thought, why not!
I am also starting to think more about being away for a long while... I still slightly feel like I'm here just for a short holiday! I managed to work out how to use the telly and watched Obama make Health Reform law...it was cool, I actually cried and was amused about the number of pens he used to sign his name. The commentators said how he might want to use his middle name too as he was using 20 pens and there were only 11 letters in Barack Obama ;o)