EJ’s again, and then it was down to B&H for a new camera for Mum. This was my first visit since the dreaded camera bag incident of last January, and I was on my best behaviour. They’ve opened a new camera department upstairs, and it was very busy. A very nice chap called Robert saw to us, and he was great in helping Mum choose the best camera for her. Unfortunately they hadn’t one in stock, but were going to get one for her. Whole transaction completed without a blush in sight. Phew. Today we were going to try for the SI Ferry, so headed off down that way. Stopped off at St Pauls, and had a slow walk down to the ferry terminal via Wall St and a Starbucks for a hot chocolate. It was very mild on board the ferry and we were lucky enough to be able to stand outside at the back without freezing. Half an hour wait at the terminal and we were back on the same boat, again able to stand outside. Walked up to Fulton St to meet D and got the subway over to Brooklyn. The plan was to have pizza at Grimaldi’s then walk the bridge, but there was a queue outside and I don’t care how nice the pizza was last time, I wasn’t going to wait in it. Just at the corner we came across Pete’s Downtown and got seated there straight away. Couple of glasses of wine and a really nice meal later we were ready to set foot back to Manhattan. It was raining when we left, but that didn’t dampen our enthusiasm for the walk, it was lovely. By the end, poor Mum was flagging, so we got the train straight home. Settled her in than sis and I went onto Broadway to Westside Market for a few nibbles. What a shop—more cheeses than at my local large Sainsburys. It’s places like this that reaffirm my love of the UWS. A relaxing night in to rest our legs.
Consulate day. They open at 9 so we headed off at about 8.10 and got there by 8.50, city was very quiet this morning. It was a quick, painless procedure and $140 lighter we left with a one year temporary passport. My other half works for a Govt department and I’ve tried to persuade him to transfer to the Foreign Office. He’s having none of it. In need of breakfast, we got the 6 down to Union Sq for a Big Daddy’s fix..... Mum and sis had taken this opportunity to visit the ESB so we walked up 5th to meet up with them. Apparently the conditions up top had been superb and Mum loved the views. Had a drink in Manhattan Mall and did a little shopping before going back via Grays Papaya at W72nd St for a truly delicious dog.
Dinner was at 8 at Carmines UWS. I’m never disappointed in Carmines, it’s always been good. We strolled down to the park via the apartment to pick up some bubbly ( and David as he’d come down with a very heavy cold and had missed dinner). The fireworks in the park were fabulous, and we shared the champagne with a young couple as we had leftovers and spare glasses. Another celeb sighting , but obviously not by me---we passed Lauren Bacall on Central Park West as we walked back to the apartment. I must learn to be more aware!!!
Hardly surprisingly, a late start today. It was raining quite heavily this morning, and my Mum wanted to get to a bank so I popped round to the branch on Columbus for her. As luck would have it, there’s an Aerosoles almost right opposite and I got a pair of shoes I’d looked at in a different branch earlier on. Result. Back like drowned rats, we headed off to the Manhattan Diner for breakfast. It was very busy, and just after we were seated a queue began to form. Thankfully the rain stopped as we ate, and so it was off to Greenwich Village to show Mum a totally different street layout. It was lovely and quite wandering around, and we saw a lovely neighbourhood touch on Morton Street ( I think that’s where it was)—there was an area round a tree that had been dedicated to some previous residents called Hyde, and the spot had been named Hyde Park. Stopped for a coffee in Factory Cafe on Christopher Street and then subwayed to B&H to collect mum’s camera. Walked up to Bryant park for a rest and watch the skaters then David and I left Mum and sis to wander while we went back to get ready for a night out. Table booked at Lisca on Amsterdam at 92nd/93rd. First time I’d been here and it’s a really nice place. Had a nice catch up with NY10025 and a slow walk down Amsterdam to finish off the evening.
Our last day :-(, and we woke to a very cold morning, the first of the visit. I needed to do some shopping this morning as did Mum and sis s o we split up—they headed to Bloomingdales, I was on a Levi mission and had got bargains previously at a shop on W23rd St. Before that I was also on the lookout for a Yankees Cabrerra tshirt so stopped off at the clubhouse on 5th. Why are there no childrens sizes with his name? A mystery to me. Got the jeans I needed and a few extra pairs too, and stopped for a hot chocolate on 6th in Barnes and Noble where we also picked up a couple of calendars. Next, I wanted to indulge my fantasy from Time and Again by visiting Gramercy Park. It was a chilly but pleasant walk and well worth it. Got chatting to a woman walking her two westies around the park. Subway from Union Sq to Jacks for the packing to be done. Mum arrived a little later absolutely freezing and couldn’t seem to warm up.
We managed to get a large taxi on the corner of Amsterdam and he drove round for us to load up the cases. Very good journey to JFK but it bacme clear that Mum wasn’t well, and the journey home wasn’t a good one for her. She’s since been to the GP and has an ear infection which is incredibly painful and the lingering effects of a cold.
All in all it was a great trip. Very different from previous visits as the pace had to be adjusted and when we were there it seemed like we didn’t get much done. Now, looking back, we covered a lot of ground given Mum’s age. She’s glad she’s done it,but in all honesty I couldn’t see her doing it again. Her way of explaining it to a friend was “it’s a place for those younger than me”. I am pleased that she got to experience it.