Right then, I am back, I am up, I am showered, I have eaten lunch and drank tea and had some of the biscuits that were supposed to go to work but now I fear they won’t make it that far. Oh well. I have watched Lost (because I have my priorities straight and also evil US Customs made me miss it on Thursday), and unpacked and now I can write about my trip.
The flight was actually decent because there was hardly anyone on it and we could spread out, although we did give death looks to the incredibly tall man who dared sit next to us initially. He moved. Hah! I watched The Invasion, which I had heard terrible things about but which actually was ok, but maybe that’s cos I was on a plane. I attempted to watch The Contract, because John Cusack was in it, but got bored. I tried to watch Rescue Dawn, but that was too intense, so settled on Stardust. Again.
I do have a bit of an issue with US Customs I’m afraid. I understand they are vigilant about who can come in and who can’t, as well they should be, and if they have to take my fingerprints and a photo of me with static plane hair, fine. But couldn’t they staff their Customs a little better? 4 people to 3 plane fulls of people just isn’t going to cut it. 4!!! Luckily we were the first plane off and I made the right call in not going to the toilet as soon as I got off the plane, but still, that queue went way back. I would have been pissed if I was back there after an 8 hour trip. And! Even though there were hardly any Americans in their queue, as soon as it got to say, 5 in a row, they let them come over to the front of our queue and go in first. Piss off!! We landed at 8.10pm and didn’t leave the airport til gone 9.30pm. That’s some welcome. Plus, once through there and we’d collected baggage, we had to go through further Customs checks where, and I swear this is true, the man there, all decked out in his uniform, put a hand to his gun as I walked up. Gulp. We don’t do guns in this country! I’m not used to them. I don’t like them. And I really don’t like them when they are in front of me attached to a man who looks like he’d rather kill me than let me into his country. Bloody hell.
And when he asked what was the reason for my stay my mind went blank. Shopping? Sightseeing? Visiting? Oh erm…Holiday! Oh how I missed my old passport with student visa that showed I had once been allowed to live in this country for a whole year with no problems.
Anyway, taxi to hotel. Check in. The man at the desk welcomes us and gets our room key and says ‘There’s only one bed in this room’ and we nod in our tired state and say yeah, that’s fine. And he gives us this look. This, ‘Oh I see you are lesbians’ look. Well, first off, if I was a lesbian looking at me like that would not go down well. And secondly, no! Do people not share beds in this country to save money on hotel rooms? Crikey. So far I had learned don’t be a foreigner and don’t be gay in America. (I’m kidding I’m kidding.)
After a fairly crappy night’s sleep (see, my whole ‘poo poo jet lag, poo poo’ just went out of the window right there) we got up and ventured out to find breakfast. And it was pissing it down. Seriously, it rained all day, proper, torrential ‘I am gonna soak you through sucker’ rain. Huh. Needed a big cup of tea. We found Bagel and Bean. Ah, Bagel and Bean, how I miss you already. It does what it says on the box. Then, due to the rain, we made our way to the MoMA. I called my friend Angela who I hadn’t seen since university ended…6 years ago? Too long anyway, and she and her boyfriend Ryan agreed to meet us there.
We did a quick lap of the MoMA, mainly because, although I generally like art, it does not do that much for me. My brother would appreciate it way more. If it looks like a two year old could do it, it’s not art. Hell, if it looks like I could do it, it’s not art. We saw Picasso and Warhol and…erm…some other really famous artists who I have already forgotten.
Then Angela and Ryan got there just as we were leaving. It’s funny, it’s been so long since I’ve seen them and yet within five minutes it was like I’d always hung out with them. Ryan took the lead and took us to the subway. We battled the rain some more, my brolly turned inside out several times and battered me in the face as the wind picked up. My so called waterproof boots just couldn’t take it anymore and so my feet were squishy, and my jeans were soaked to the knees.
We went to Century 21 to do more fun, indoors type things like shopping, passing Ground Zero on the way. I hadn’t been to New York since 9/11. The last time I had stood on that spot there had been huge towers there. I had gone up the long elevator ride to the top. I had bought souvenirs from the gift shop and rested my head against the glass to look down and make myself feel sick. I had stood outside and seen the slight curve of the Earth. It felt a little morbid to be there, and yet how can you go by and not at least take a moment to reflect?
Century 21 turned out to be very similar to our TK Maxx, in that, yes stuff is cheap, but you kind of had to dig around to get to the good stuff, and none of us were really in the mood to hunt. We had a break in Starbucks and chatted a while about our lives. Then we decided to go get something to eat. On the way we passed some shops and so had to go in of course. I got a pair of jeans from American Eagle for $20. Score. And then some more stuff for no money at Forever 21. What’s the obsession with 21 in clothing store names? Then we ate food at a great Italian restaurant and my gnocchi filled me up. After eating we said out goodbyes to Ryan and Angela. It had been so great to see them.
Somehow we were still awake and went for another little shop. Anyone who knows me will be astounded by the amount of shopping I did this weekend. I am a little shocked myself.