I’m not looking forward to the end of this wonderful vacation, a little pensive about the trip between JFK and LAX, given how punchy US flight crews have become in the past week. I’d ask The Donald to intervene, seeing as he (well, Pence) is trying to mend bridges with Oz right now, but the big fella appears to be busy drowning in the swamp. Closing in on 100 days in office now — as a PR exercise it’s been a ridiculous failure, surely, but maybe I should keep my mouth shut until I’m safely home.
We’ve museum-ed the shit out of New York these past couple of days, and today was no exception. At 9am, that useless hour before everything opens, we hit the chilly road and scouted the surrounds of the Rockefeller Centre, thinking to take in the views from the observation deck; but the little minx at the ticketing gate told us there was zero visibility today, so we poked around until The Sea Grill opened and had ourselves some lunch. It was the most expensive meal we’ve enjoyed so far, but also the best. Clam chowder to kill for, and scallops to die for. People who complain about US food really need to spend a few bucks, this shit is delicious.
Stomachs nicely rounded, we walked it off for a couple of blocks up to the Museum of Modern Art on West 53rd and flashed our New York passes again. Before we knew it we were among Picasso’s finest, and I even discovered a new artist — Giorgio de Chico — whose manipulation of perspectives and palette really appeals to me. Monet’s Reflections of Clouds on the Water-Lily Pond is here, and I’m thrilled to have seen him now in Australia, France and the USA. For those not so interested in art, there’s always the overpriced gift shop (which we also visited). But really, get yourselves some culture, FFS.
After another packed day, we limped home and strayed into a menswear store where I emerged with a new pair of shoes and a couple of shirts, enough I hope to get me through without having to visit a laundromat or succumb through sheer laziness to the exorbitant hotel dry-cleaning service ($14 for a t-shirt). The forecast is for worse weather tomorrow, so we probably won’t make the Top of the Rock, Empire State Building, HOHO bus tour or Circleline cruise tomorrow either, but luckily there’s no shortage of other things to do in this city. Loving my New York pass too, by the way. I’m saving time and big $$$.
Collapsing in our room, we reviewed our photos from the day, read and sent emails, and prepared ourselves for tomorrow. I need to rest my feet, but I also don’t want to waste a moment. I’ll walk my legs into bloody stumps if I have to, I can always recuperate on the flight home. I may never come back here, so I have to do everything or I’ll regret the one thing I didn’t do. That means more short trips on the subway to explore Lower Manhattan and all those places ending in ‘Village’. Plus, I could stand to eat more authentic New York pizza.
Lots to see and do (and eat)! My best decision so far, other than coming here, was to pick a hotel only a block away from Grand Central. With quick and cheap transport at out fingertips, nothing is out of reach. I thought the subway would be daunting, but it is not. I also mistakenly thought we’d have time for a day trip to Washington DC or the Hamptons, but that’s not going to happen. Next time, maybe. So endeth Day 6 of our NYC vacation.