New York

Here’s a little summary of last week’s fantastic trip to New York. Maddy and I went as a three-tiered celebration: for her 22nd birthday, our graduation from UCSB, and to visit our sisters, who both live there. We were sweating profusely in 98% humidity the whole time, so were not inclined to snap pictures at every moment, but here are a few highlights:

We walked along the entire High Line, a park created a few years ago along an old, elevated railroad track. It was one of the most beautifully landscaped parks I’ve seen, and such a unique idea. Plus, since it’s elevated, you can peer into offices and apartments below. Creepy and cool!

We visited the Tenement Museum, which is an old restored tenement building in the Lower East Side where visitors learn about the harsh reality that immigrants faced in 19th and 20th Century New York. My mom had been dying to go here when we were in New York ten years ago, but due to extraneous circumstances (i.e. my dad leading us on a wild goose chase for two hours to find an allegedly “famous” deli), we didn’t make the tour. This time was different, and we learned, in 90-degree heat and a still-unairconditioned building (more authentic, I guess?) how some families survived the Depression on a few dollars a week.

We also went to a comedy club, having bought tickets off some random guy in the park a day earlier. We knew we were taking our chances, but it turned out to be fantastic. I laughed for an hour and a half straight. We were smart and chose seats in the back, to avoid the inevitable and ruthless heckling that takes place with audience members in the front. A good call!

One day I explored Central Park and the MoMA alone, since Maddy got sick. I’ve come to terms with the embarrassing fact that I’m not a cultured person who enjoys museums, but it was a free day, so I gave it a shot. I saw Warhol’s Campbell Soups, Van Gogh’s Starry Night, and some works by my favorite artist (if an uncultured person is allowed to have one), Georges Seurat, but after an hour I called it a day.

Although we mostly stayed in Manhattan with Maddy’s sister, we also explored a lot of Brooklyn, where my sister lives. We walked around the Polish neighborhood of Greenpoint, right along the East River; we strolled through the beautiful Prospect Park; Maddy and I took a “Hipster’s Food Tour of Williamsburg” (oh, Groupon); and discovered an amazing German beer hall.

On our last night, our family friend Penelope invited us all over to dinner at her apartment. She lives on the Upper West Side in a gorgeous apartment that she fixed up herself, and renewed our view of her as a “nicer Martha Stewart.” Katie, Maddy, Pen, her daughter Jen, and I ate a great meal on her jaw-dropping rooftop, overlooking the city. A perfect last night!

This trip inspired future plans to move to New York. I truly loved the feeling of the city, and being constantly surrounded by exciting things to do. Enough of the suburbs! Hopefully rent prices will take a dip at some point, but that’s probably wishful thinking. . . .

P.S. I love this map, “The Bay Area, Through A New Yorkers Eyes.” Now that I’ve been there, I can understand it! Via SFist.

  • Awesome pictures!! Your description actually makes me want to go there which is a first haha… You should probably move there so I can stay with you :P