We were able to sneak in lots of touristy things between Isaac's ballet things.
We walked over the Brooklyn Bridge--this time after dark.
(Don't worry. It wasn't late, just dark enough to see the city lights well.)
One "must see" in NYC is a Broadway musical. We decided to go see On the Town.
It was a Gene Kelly/Frank Sinatra movie adapted for the stage.
Our single common complaint that the play had too much forced sexuality.
The story was smart and the sex jokes just dumbed it down--easy laughs. Blah.
But the singing! And the dancing!
It was still money well spent.
Later in the week, we stumbled upon an awesome Frank Sinatra display.
Look what they had:
Frankie is good, but my heart will always be with Gene.
One place I really wanted to go while in New York this time was The Tonight Show.
They weren't filming the entire week.
My husband made it up to me by taking me to the Manhattan Temple.
It was wonderful and peaceful and quiet.
We went to Chinatown.
That was weird.
And Central Park.
That was lovely.
Last year we rented bikes and rode through the park. This year, we decided to walk. There were lots of walking paths where bikes weren't allowed, so we saw a completely different park this year.
One night, Isaac randomly challenged us to arm wrestling.
Isaac won right arms, Dad won left.
I couldn't win against either of them, even if I cheated and used both arms.
On the last day, we opted to not bother with the barre any longer. I asked the guys working just a couple of blocks away if we could toss the barre into their dumpster.
They had us put it next to the dumpster to be recycled for cash. Sounded great to us. We were awfully glad to be free of that thing! It served Isaac well, but we didn't want to haul it around one more minute.
The night before we were to go home, I still hadn't done any souvenir shopping. When you leave five children at home, you have to bring something back with you. Isaac had tickets to the ballet included in his YAGP participant's packet and Justin wanted to take the trip to the top of the Empire State Building. (I'd gone last year and, though it was cool, it was also $32 and I didn't need to see it again so soon.) We decided to divide and conquer.
I was at Times Square and it was insane. There was construction on one entire sidewalk, so there was no where for the masses to move. I walked by the TKTS booth and they were advertising that they still had tickets for An American in Paris (another Gene Kelly master work). The show was to start in an hour and a crappy seat was cheaper than Justin's ticket up the Empire State Building. After making sure no one's feelings would be hurt if I went without them, I bought it.
This was a highlight of my week.
Have you ever recommended a movie (or book or dessert) to someone, then experience that thing with them? I don't know about you, but I always feel this uncomfortable pressure to enjoy it even more--like that will influence my friend's review of the recommendation. I worry that they won't like it, which, ironically, makes it more difficult for me to like it. Does that make any sense?!
(Oh, my poor husband. Based on that last paragraph, I sound like a wacko. He puts up with me, nonetheless.)
Anyway, I went to the musical
and I felt no pressure to make sure everyone else was enjoying the entertainment I chose.
I just enjoyed it.
Well, enjoy is such a small adjective for the way I really felt.
I laughed and cried.
I patted my chest and sighed.
I leaned really far forward so I could see the stage.
But, no matter.
It was phenomenal.
This was my text to my mother:
"Mom, I just saw An American in Paris.
Oh, Mom. It was magical, transporting, beautiful.
I'm glad my son is in the business of bringing joy and beauty to the world."
Thank you for a fun visit, New York City.
The way things are going, we will probably see you again next year.