NYC and back again

We all seem to have survived the trip AO & I took to NYC and back again. We returned to find Bear alive and well, smiley and normal-seeming. Equally important, my mom & Severa seem to have lived through the ordeal without aging a bit. I’m sure it was stressful, but they didn’t let me know and it certainly didn’t show. Gracie, too, seems arguably younger after the weekend. AO & I had an excellent time. I admit that landing at LGA at 5ish on Saturday night and needing to hit the hotel south of midtown and book it out to Brooklyn for a 7pm reservation had me in both a stressed and exhausted mood all the way from the Detroit airport to Queens, but once we hit the iPad-laden land of Terminal D at LaGuardia, I had a bit of a second wind. We managed to check into our hotel in the Fashion District just shy of 6 pm, freshen up, and meet our friends in the lobby just on the other side of 6:30. Ish. The seven of us piled in to two cabs to Brooklyn. Our res, which I had made, was at Flatbush Farms, not too far off of Flatbush Avenue. Now, we all know I’m no New Yorker (and the owner of the cafe on 27th Street certainly had no qualms about telling me as much), and I certainly don’t think I could do the job of a New York cabbie, but I do know where Flatbush Avenue is. While I don’t think NYC cabbie should be omniscient, I think they should probably be aware of most of the major streets in NYC of which I am aware. And one of those is Flatbush Ave. Pretty. Major. Street. This cabbie, though? Not so much. I had to guide her from the west side of Manhattan to the depths (not really) of Brooklyn using my iPhone’s map. And then I messed up because we were looking for an Avenue and not a Place, but that really doesn’t matter because we were only a couple of blocks off. And what’s a couple of blocks when you’re in the greatest city on earth? Sure, I was wearing heels, but traipsing through the side streets of Brooklyn on a dark February night when peeps are leaving their ground-level brownstones’ lights on so I can peek in at the mouldings? Yes, please! Anyway, we made it to dinner and it was delish. We headed to a bar nearby to find the bride, which was super fun until AO and I hit the wall and decided to head back to the hotel. It was a little after 11. We headed down to the nearest subway stop, knowing the line went into the City, and bought our tickets and headed to wait on the tracks. Hmm, I thought. This train says it’s headed to Coney Island. As I said, I’m no New Yorker, but that didn’t seem right. Oops. Back up to the street, cross the street, find other entrance. Coney Island again! Oops. Cross the OTHER street and bam! Because it was a Saturday night, or maybe just because, the subway stop to take us back into the City was closed. Damn. It. So, we start to walk to find the next stop. And we walk. And we walk. And we’re closing in on the stop according to AO’s phone (mine is dead). And we are right on top of the stop! Except we can’t find it…Where IS it? For God’s sake, who knows? I do know, though, that we can see the Brooklyn Bridge so I’m pretty sure we’re out of stops and need to adjust to our new reality: the third cab of the night. Fine. We get home just before midnight, I pretend I’m going to read and pretty much the next thing I know, it’s 9:15 on Sunday morning. Peaceful sigh.

Sunday was pretty much the best day ever. We left the hotel, bought some flowers and headed to Andrea & Scott’s apartment right around the corner. Of course I was really excited to see them and their apartment (love seeing apartments!), but the real draw was their 2.5 year old gem of a boy, Tennessee. Holy cow is that kid awesome. Bravo, guys. We were also blessed because Keyes and her fella, Joe, made the trip down from the upper west side to meet us for brunch. I can’t tell you how giddy all this made me. Old friends gathered round and chatting and brunching and laughing. Does it get any better? After overstaying (I couldn’t help it! The kid is so awesome and the company so fun and the apartment so welcoming), AO and I headed back to the hotel for a power nap. After this brief refresher, we decided on a walk down to Washington Square Park. We walked around the NYU buildings for a bit and quickly found a bar showing the Badger game. Hooray! We warmed up with some beers and a stunning Badger win. We trekked back to the hotel, grabbing a slice of $1 pizza on the way, and took another quick snooze (do you see the theme?) before dressing ourselves for the wedding. After pushing myself into my girdle-like contraption and getting AO to help me with my zipper, I put on more makeup than I had in months and we headed out for the brisk (in all senses of the word) walk to the wedding locale, del Posto.

What can I say? The bride outdid herself: she looked gorgeous and happy. The groom was glowing. The guests were giddy. The food was taste-a-licious (seriously good). The wine did not stop flowing, which, in my case, wasn’t necessarily a good thing. Anyway, it was really a spectacular wedding, made even better by being surrounded by good friends.

Because our flight didn’t leave until after 2 pm on Monday, we were able to have a Kristin morning! Feebrain sweetly met us at our hotel (trekking all the way from that other island, Brooklyn) and even picked out a nice cafe for us to have coffee and breakfast. Of course, that cafe didn’t really exist, but another one stood proudly in its place and, I dare say, was even better than its former occupant. I had a delicious mozzarella, tomato & pesto sandwich – yes, for breakfast – and AO and Fee had some contraption with prosciutto. Cappuccini all around! This was another one of the highlights of our trip for me: sitting around a coffee shop, chatting with some of my favorite people. Dreamy sigh.

And then we were off! Back to the hotel, into the cab, off to LGA for our direct (yay!) flight to MSN. Off the plane in MSN, AO stepped it to the economy lot, I grabbed our bag from the baggage claim, and we sped off home. We unpacked (I never unpack this quickly), tidied up and I did my best to impersonate a patient person as we waited for my mom & Severa to pull up with baby bear. FINALLY, they arrived! I yelled, “They’re here!” and ran out to meet them. I grabbed Mollybear and whisked her inside. It was about 5:15. She was sound asleep in my arms, on my chest, by 5:37. She slept until 7:30 the next morning. I guess she had a long weekend, too.

Thanks, everyone, for making our first post-Bear vacation an unqualified success!


7 Responses to “NYC and back again”

  1. 1 Tammy February 20, 2013 at 11:18 am

    Really great story! I smiled through the whole thing!

  2. 2 kateandgracie February 20, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Oh, thanks for being so nice. I was worried it was a little boring 🙂

  3. 3 Kristin February 21, 2013 at 8:40 am

    You had a lady cab driver?? That has only happened to me once in my life. Never mind her gender, if she did not know where Flatbush was, well then, I don’t even know what to say about that part.

    So good to see you guys. Sorry for the random breakfast, although it was sort of delicious.

  4. 4 kateandgracie February 21, 2013 at 9:13 am

    I loved the random breakfast! I had just been saying to Aaron that I really wanted a mozzarella, tomato & pesto panino and the choices in Madison for that sort of thing are slim to none (I was actually suggesting we open a joint). And then appeared Kristin and the former Antique Cafe to serve me one! Hallelujah!

    And YES! She was a lady. I hadn’t even thought of that. Maybe she wasn’t a real cab driver and was just a nice person who offered us a ride and took our money. That’d be fine, I guess. I mean, she was nice enough.

  5. 5 Terry February 22, 2013 at 1:16 am

    Great post! I read it aloud to Steve and we are looking up your Brooklyn restaurant on his ipad. You know he loves Flatbush! So how quickly did Gracie fall asleep? And how about your mom???

  6. 6 Terry February 22, 2013 at 1:20 am

    And as much as he loves Flatbush, you know how much I love del Posto!! And I also have to make sure you know I’m writing this on Hawaii time, so it is not as late as the entry looks.

  7. 7 kateandgracie February 22, 2013 at 12:37 pm

    del Posto was AMAZING! And Flatbush Farms was actually super duper tasty. I say “actually” only because it was a bit of a random find of mine. I was just looking for a place relatively close to the bar that would take reservations.

    Gracie fell asleep pretty fast, too, though she perked up when Aaron opened the refrigerator. I dare say she didn’t have as many treats as she’s used to. And my mom? I’m not sure, but I think she and Severa were pretty pleased to hand her off to me. They did really great, though!

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February 2013

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