Can you believe it? I was in the Big Apple. The city that never sleeps. New York, New York! Somehow, I found myself volunteering to be a driver and chaperone for the youth group at church.
Best impulsive decision, ever.
I'm such a rube. A hick. A tourist..... and yanno what? Could not care less!!! I had the best time. From architecture, to the incredible weather (sunny. blue skies. 40-50's...not a drop of rain!); from street vendors to the fascinating people, and all the incredible food..WoW.
New York pizza? omg. And the bagels? Srsly? Who knew?
Well, New Yorker's know. Buy a slice for a buck and you've got a meal! Run 'round the corner and buy a just-made bagel...oh so soft inside, and just perfectly firm on the outside....
Oh, and the walking... oh my gods above and below!!! We walked from Battery Park, to the financial district. There were somber moments at the World Trade Center site...it hits you like a fast blow to the gut...or a fist grabbed tight around your throat..shocking and unexpectedly painful even after all these years.....then, tears and shivers, a soft-spoken prayer, and a heavy heart.
We proceeded to Chinatown for an authentic Chinese meal. (omg--i'm gonna be saying that a lot.)
Then on to SoHo, and the Village, and St. Marks (a 'place', not a church!). All told, we walked for 11 hours. We sat down once in all that time, at the restaurant, for an hour.
Eleven. Hours. Of. Walking.
And that was just *Saturday* !!!
We walked nearly all day Sunday as well, (7 hours!) taking in the beauty of Central Park (omg!!), and "my" group heading to MOMA (Museum of Modern Art)...and get ready for yet another OMG....
Jackson Pollock....Picasso...Monet....Manet...Andrew Wyeth (omg i got to see Christina's World....!!!! And too bad I didn't discover until *after* we got home that Starry Night was there...*pout*...well, tis a reason to go back, right?!)
Just a small aside here....I don't think you can fully experience the sheer genius of Jackson Pollock unless you see his art up close and personal...I was not a fan...until Sunday.
Wow. His work blew me away. It is raw, and visceral and intense...so full of humanness...and no, I've never seen the movie about him...but he spoke through his art.
There were so many paintings and wood block prints and sculpture (there were these perfectly round marble "balls" and an "urn" that were to represent "woman" on a round marble disc...wait, lemme see if i got a pic of that....)
Yes! (pictures? how about over 300 in 48 hours?!) So this is the "breast and symbolic opening of a woman, representing her ability to bring life into the world."
As a woman who never gave birth to any of her kids, that didn't resonate with me, not at all. Yet frankly? I was mesmerized.
The thing about those marble "breasts"? They were *perfect* spheres, and the sheer smoothness of them...the marble was as slick, and smooth as skin... it was amazing that hard cold marble could be transformed into something so perfect.
the ball might have been gypsum? it too was perfectly round, but not slick the way the marble one was...this one had shimmer/gleam to it...
...the long subway ride to the park at the start of our epic trek, packed like sardines....the Elvis impersonator who was more than a little bit kinda freaky...the Broadway show( omg! )...the Chinese Lady who chased me through her little shop in Chinatown selling me a purse for "10 dolla...8 dolla...okay for you ...5 dolla" (i did buy it for $5!) (this after buying $50 of other things there...she really liked me... )
And the buildings. Gosh.
Like this one (just outside of Battery Park, in the Financial District):
the mirrored front reflected the sky, the passing clouds became living art... I was enchanted with that..and the mix of old and new living in some sort of strange harmony...St. Pauls Cathedral all gothic architecture, right next to tall glass-fronted sky scrapers....the statues,and the people...great green goddess, the people.
The energy there is electric. At 11 p.m. it is nearly as hubbub-filled as at noon. (and in the Village? MORE people than at noon!!)
And the streets, all stories in themselves...Wall Street, Fifth Avenue, Central Park South, (yes I did take pictures of them all!)...and Broadway. Omg! me, hick from the stix...ate lunch on Broadway .... !!!
and Times Square?! OMG...where to look? oogling *everything*...look up and see Radio City Music Hall, and down there to the building where the New Years Ball drop happens...
Would i go back there again?
(but not, please, until next year...I'm still processing...and my feet? they might leave me)