New York City

The Big Apple. I’d been there before, once when I was 12 and again when I was 16. It’s been a minute. Woney had never been so when we began planning this trip, it only made sense to visit there first.

Before I ever get to the New York stories, I must tell you that I began packing for this trip long about two months ago. I made Martie come up for the weekend specifically so that we could go through every single item of clothing in my closet to ensure that I picked items that a) were comfortable and b) gave me a butt. Irish lasses have booties is my understanding and I wanted to fit in. Anyway, Martie and I picked out all my clothes and then I packed my giant suitcase. Woney doesn’t have a Martie so she called me often to discuss wardrobe choices. So often, in fact, that we decided she should just bring the entire contents of her closet for us to go through at my house. Which we did. Once we were done, it looked as if her closet puked in my living room, delighting Murphy to no end.

Back when I was married, my father gave me a body pillow one year for Christmas. I’m not sure why. It looked nice on the bed, though, so I kept it and as time passed, I became exceptionally fond of that pillow. I am now so fond of it that I have a body pillow in every house where I regularly spend the night. When I don’t have one, I don’t sleep well. So in our planning and packing, I confessed to Woney that I needed my pillow for this trip. She agreed.

On Wednesday morning we awoke, bright eyed and excited. Rather, we awoke and made it to the plane on time. Who flies at the horrific hour of 6:45 a.m.? Ridiculous. Anyway, we lugged our giant suitcases full of our wardrobes and my giant pillow to the airport and headed off. All the way through security, all the way through the plane, all the way through customs, all the way through New York, all the way through Ireland, and at every location on the flight back home, people commented on my pillow. “Can I borrow it?” asked the pilots. “You ought to sleep well,” commented the Irishmen. “Good Lord, I see why you brought this,” commented Woney when she borrowed it once. I am a smart traveler.

Once we arrived in New York and deposited our luggage and my pillow, Woney and I took off. We had stuff to see. We had pretzels to buy. We had a very fancy schmancy dinner to attend. We rode the ferris wheel at Toys R Us. We found a wall with handprints of famous people. Below is me, holding hands with Clint Eastwood. I did that for Poppa. He would have liked that. Woney held hands with Jason Statham and she is a lucky, lucky girl as Jason Statham is hot.

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We rode the subway. We shopped on Canal Street. We fended off the sly Asian women who insisted that they had the best Coach purses in New York, would we please walk with them down this alley. We went to a bar, and yes, I kissed a boy and I liked it. (This is what happens when I drink in a bar.) We went to MoMA. We went to Central Park. We ate at Beauty and Essex, and I’m here to tell you, go there. Go as soon as possible. Get the grilled cheese dumplings, one order for each person. You will think that a single order will be enough for the table but once you taste one, you will realize the error of your ways. My gosh, I don’t think I ever tasted anything so good in all my life.

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Before we left on this trip, I worried a little that once I was given free reign with my diet, I’d go off the rails like nobody’s business. But after two and a half days in NYC, I realized that I could eat the entire contents of a pizza shop and be fine. We walked about a hundred miles there. I still have cankles from all the walking. It is a busy place, full of every kind of person you ever dreamed possible. It goes and goes and goes, and never shuts down. It’s glorious and I would HATE to live there.

For our last day in the city, Woney and I planned to go to Ground Zero. We had met up with friends a couple of times during our stay and enjoyed their company but this was something we wanted to do alone. I knew that it would be no party, and I didn’t want to have to fake my charm when my heart was hurting.

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We took the subway downtown and walked to the site. Standing in line brought ready tears to my eyes. There were some markers and signs there, explaining how the park was set up, and explaining the Flag of Honor. That fire house above lost every single responder they had on 9/11, by the way. I took a few pictures but more than anything, I just wept. We queued for a while and the closer we got the quieter things were. Entering the park was a somber experience. It’s rather plain, filled with ivy and trees and the two monument pools for all the lives lost. It’s beautiful, though, and absolutely perfect. Please go if you ever get the chance.

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After some time, Woney and I wandered off. We made our contributions and left little pieces of our hearts there to mingle with the other left-behind hearts.

We made it back to our hotel, collected our baggage and my pillow and hit the road for the airport.

Next stop: Dublin!

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. craftycritter
    Jul 24, 2013 @ 07:07:38

    I can totally relate to the experience at the 9/11 Memorial. A few years ago J and I visited friends who live just outside of DC. We went to the Holocaust Museum and it was the same way; very quiet and somber. And there were some tears.

    On a lighter note, I love the pictures and I totally want to do that trip someday.

    Reply

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