We woke up and there was sun. Sun!!! No more rain, no more being all wet and gross. We had breakfast at Bagel and Bean again, which we did everyday so I can stop saying that now.
Saturday we went to Central Park. We walked around just taking it in, watching the hundreds of joggers and kids playing on swings. We walked past Strawberry Fields which I had always assumed was bigger, but it’s just a patch of ground opposite the Dakota Building. Then we headed to the zoo. Gotta say, it’s hella depressing there. Maybe it’s because it’s a children’s zoo and I stopped being a child (on some levels at least) some time ago, but the zoo was actually quite upsetting. You go in and the sea lions are being fed. OK, that’s cute, but…wait, is that where they live? In that tiny pool there with those rocks? All day, everyday? And then we went into the penguin hole, which is dark and gloomy and has no real air or sunshine, just a fake backdrop. Do penguins not like light? Do they not want to be outside? Because there were a lot of them cooped up in there.
The saddest part was the polar bear. Oh he was all scabby and bald on one side and had weird growths on his body. I was especially sad because I thought he was all alone, but then another one turned up so at least he has a friend in there. I left the zoo in a very gloomy state.
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.
Tomorrow afternoon I am off to New York. It doesn’t quite feel real in my head yet that I will be getting on a plane and leaving the country. I haven’t been to the US in…way too long, and the last time I was in New York was May 2001. That’s just not right.
So my body is in denial about my upcoming 7+ hour flight and the thought of jet lag (which I will beat!), but my brain is fretting, as it does. Last night I had anxiety dreams. I was in some foreign place where nobody spoke English, I needed to get to the airport to catch a flight but we had a car crash, and then my bag got lost (which seemed a bigger deal than the crash for some reason). Also, I didn’t have an currency. This was probably brought on by the fact that I am ill prepared (no travel insurance! Crap, gotta sort that), am not packed, am worrying about it being -50 degrees and what will I wear then…and all that jazz. I am such a crap traveller. But I will enjoy it when I get there, promise.
Anyway, back in 2001 I went to NY with a group of friends while I was at the University of Maryland. We drove up and stayed with people I didn’t know but who kindly let me stay on their sofa anyway. It was a fab trip. One of the things I remember most about it is us girls buying I Heart NY T-Shirts and wearing them around for the day. We got strange looks and a couple of young teenage girls mocked in their vicious accent ‘Can you say tourists?’ Oh please, we wore them in an ironic way. (Um..yeah. I thought we looked cool anyway.)
That T-Shirt is still one of my most favourite items of clothing, but on this trip I may have to replace it because:
Yeah. It’s a little faded. And that would be brown hair dye all over it, because yes, my hair is in fact a hundred years old and white already. I shouldn’t get so attached to items of clothing, but I do. Still, it has to go.
So that’s New York. If nothing else I have my plane reading sorted, because The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and Girls in Pants showed up today from Amazon. I just finished reading the second one (I’ve seen the film of the first one and it made me cry, um…just a little) and although they may actually be aimed at teenagers, I love them anyway. And was very touched by the ending. Because I am sappy.
See y’all next week.
Argh! This trailer for Lost has left me more excited than for Christmas almost! I cannot wait for 31st January…oh bollocks I’ll be on a plane to New York. Hmm…what time do we land and will our hotel have the right channel so I can watch it when it is shown for once? These are the really important questions.
So yes, this is a proper trailer. But if you haven’t seen season 3 (and why not I ask you? So the first few eps were a bit shaky, it more than made up for it with the later ones. Go rent it now!) then don’t watch it cos it gives a hell of a lot away. And you should really watch 3 knowing as little as possible for the surprises.
Oh man…cannot wait.
I am going to New York! Woot woot!! Oh I am so excited!
Ok, calm down. On Bonfire Night me and Jayne were talking about holidays and stuff, and how we both wanted to go to New York, and then looked at each other and I said ‘We should go!’ And she said ‘Ok!’ And so we are. And seeing as the BA November Sale ends today we figured we might as well take advantage of it, and, as of two minutes ago, we are booked! (Well, the flights are.)
On January 31st we shall be flying to JFK for 4 nights. And then we are going to sightsee and do really touristy things and also shop, so the damn dollar better stay as it is until then. Please!
I am so terrible at spending money. I was booking for both of us and so got very hot, and then my palms went all clammy and I hovered over the ‘Book Now’ button for ages, making sure everything was right and I hadn’t accidentally put my name was ‘Bob’ or something (not helped by the fact that Jayne was Victoria at birth and so I had to check if that’s what she is on her passport too. She is, and well remembered Carrie.)
Ten weeks to go. I haven’t been since 2001. The whole skyline has changed since then. If anyone has any pointers on where we should stay, and what we must see, do let me know.
I feel a bit faint now. I might have to have a lie down.