Taking A Bite Of The Big Apple

Well we have arrived in New York City. Throughout the train ride I was trying to work on my paper for psychology. I got just over three pages written. I probably would have been able to write more if I had had access to wifi so I could re-watch the debate video, but there was no such luck. I spent a lot of time taking pictures with my mom on my MacBook’s Photobooth. That was pretty funny. I remember when I got my first Apple laptop a couple years ago I was absolutely obsessed with taking pictures on it so it was nice to do it again for the first time in a while.

Our train was due to arrive at 4:30. When we were almost at Trenton, New Jersey the conductor got on the speaker system and said that there were some complications on the tracks ahead and that we would have to back up and go forward on another track and that it would cause a maximum of a 15-minute delay. We jerked back and forth for about ten minutes before the conductor got back on the speakers and said that the tracks had been fixed but our train was having mechanical problems. He asked for our patience for about the fifth time in this whole ordeal and said that the problems would cause a “significant delay.” Great. This freaking train was going to be cutting into my valuable shopping time. I was expecting to be compensated for the time they were wasting. Thankfully, though, the problem was resolved rather quickly and we were once again on our way. We arrived at Penn Station around 5:15, 45 minutes later than expected. Not too bad considering I was expecting to arrive at least an hour and a half later.

We had to walk quite a ways before we could hop in a taxi. Traffic was terrible. I am guessing it was because it was rush hour on a Friday night, but in New York you can never really predict what the traffic will be like; you can only really count on it taking twice as long as it should to get somewhere. The taxi driver we had was pretty terrible. He kept trying to weave in and out of lanes to get ahead but it never worked in his favor. If anything, it probably got us where we were going slower than if he had just stayed in one lane. At one point he rolled down his window to talk to his friend in a car next to us and told him that he was “falling asleep” from being so tired. Well that was certainly something I enjoy hearing. He was also playing some God-awful Caribbean music about how great and wonderful God is. Vom. When we got out of the taxi, the first song was still playing and it had been going for 25 minutes already and showed no signs of stopping. We ended up getting out of the taxi before we arrived to the hotel because it was like a sauna in there was so annoying to just be stuck in gridlock when we could walk faster than we were driving.

When we got to the hotel, we checked in and came up to our room. We are in such a prime location: at the intersection of the electrical maintenance room and the ice machine. This hotel must really value its customers who get the government rate. We are in the lap of luxury. Well I am actually making this place sound a lot worse than it is. The room is pretty spacious (for New York City) and has two double beds. There are two large closets, one for my mom and one for me.

I wanted to go out and do some shopping before we headed to dinner, but it was getting a little too close to dinner time so we just hung out in the room and relaxed for a bit. I guess it was for the better, anyway, because I had a moderate back ache and it was good to just rest a while and let it run its course. I was trying to find something in our room about wifi but I just gave up and opened up my laptop to see what my wifi options were. I saw one for the hotel and got really excited. However, it opened up a login page for the wifi connection where I saw that it costs $14.95 per day. Um, no way. I just decided that I would type up this blog entry on Word to post when I got home and to wait and work on my psych paper back at school. I still have history stuff to read- the biography of James Madison and a chapter from my textbook. I think I may pee myself from excitement, I can hardly wait. I will probably end up skipping shopping and just curl up in Starbucks and read all day tomorrow. It should be way more fun than going to Soho, that’s for sure.

The restaurant where we went to dinner is called Fig and Olive and it is a Mediterranean restaurant and was on the same block as our hotel, so that was pretty convenient. When we got there, the décor of the restaurant was so nice. It was very intimate, with low lighting and comfortable seating. We were seated right away upstairs. We ordered an appetizer of three crostinis, which are slices of toasted bread with different toppings. We got one with roasted red peppers and a cheese, one with shrimp, avocado and a spread and one with mushrooms and artichokes. The mushroom one was both my and my mom’s favorite. For our entrees, my mom got a pallela with scallops, shrimp and an olive tapenade. I got seared salmon with a salad of hot cherry tomatoes, zucchini and olives. It was absolutely delicious. Because the food we already had was so good, we decided to try a dessert they had to offer. The had lots of good sounding choices but we ended up deciding on a puff pastry with caramelized apples, cinnamon and topped with vanilla ice cream. It was just the right size and the perfect way to end the meal.

After dinner we were going to head to Fifth Avenue to do some shopping. Since it wasn’t even 8:30 on a Friday night, we thought for sure that the stores would still be open. Well, we were wrong. I tried to open the revolving door to Juicy Couture, but it was locked shut. I was deceived by the workers inside-I thought they were customers shopping. Walking a little farther, we saw that H&M was still open. I normally don’t ever find things in there that I like, but I just felt like going in because I didn’t know what other stores I would find that would still be open. Just as luck would have it, the few things that I did like in the store didn’t come in my size. When I did find things that were in my size, I was disappointed and disgusted when I tried them on in the fitting room. Everything was too small. They weren’t even close to fitting. It was so upsetting. The rest of the night I just felt fat and gross. I told my mom this and she assured me that I look wonderful, but when I get in that state of mind basically nothing can change it. I went the whole night regretting getting appetizers and a dessert at dinner. What was I thinking eating all of that? I worry that when I get home I won’t be able to get out of the habit of eating more than usual. The way I need to look at it, I guess, is that my team would be proud of me for being able to order more than usual because it is a special occasion and because I wanted to eat it. After our failed shopping excursion, we were getting fed up with the swarms of tourists on the sidewalks and just headed back to the hotel. It was past 9:00 anyway. I hopped in the shower and tried to read some of my James Madison biography for history but I spent over an hour and didn’t even get through ten pages. I will just save it for the train ride back where I will have fewer distractions.

Saturday, we woke up at 8:30. My mom confirmed what my roommate told me a couple days ago- I do, in fact, talk in my sleep. However, unlike one unintelligible word that Brittany has been hearing, I said a full out sentence. My mom said that, with quite an attitude, I said, “What gives? Are you just going to sit there and watch that damn TV?” That was probably one of the most entertaining things I could have woken up to.  After we got up and ready (a feat that I completed in less than 15 minutes) we headed downstairs to the restaurant in our hotel for breakfast. My mom got two eggs over-medium with hash-brownish potatoes and rye toast. I got steel-cut oatmeal and a fresh fruit bowl. I love love love oatmeal so much. I have it every day. The fruit bowl had blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, cantaloupe, honeydew, and pineapple in it. Everything was good except the honeydew and cantaloupe; they were both pretty crunchy and if you have ever had melon like that you know that it is disgusting no matter how sweet it may taste.

Once breakfast was over, we had about an hour and a half until the tour started at LIM. We went over to Fifth Avenue to shop at all the stores that were closed the night before. We started in Juicy Couture. I don’t know why I even bother going in there anymore. I have outgrown my days of liking their tacky stuff. The only clothing in their store that I like are the “Bird by Juicy Couture” collection, which has nothing under $300 in it. No thanks; I will spend my money on something else. Next we went to Saks. Walking in there was disgusting; the smell of all the perfume was literally making us sick. Once we got upstairs things were better, though. Everything I liked there was so expensive. I loved this Marc by Marc Jacobs leopard print skirt but it was over $400. When we were getting ready to leave we saw some paramedics walking around with a stretcher and a medical kit and I joked that someone had seen the price tags had a heart attack. After Saks, we made our way to Sephora. I swear, I could spend hours in that store. I had to get some new foundation, so I ended up getting some from Make Up Forever. I have bought their foundation before and really liked it, so why change something that works perfectly fine? When we were done there, there was still quite a bit of time left before the tour so we headed back uptown to do some more shopping. I caved in to my boycott on Zara (they have been found to use child labor in their manufacturing buildings overseas) and went in. I ended up not seeing anything; it’s always either hit or miss with them. Then it was off to Bendel’s- one of my favorites. Even though I never really end up getting anything there because it’s so expensive, it’s still fun to look around at what they have.

It was then time to head over to LIM for the tour. We got there just in time and picked up my folder of information and took the elevator up to the first general information session. Following this presentation, there were four information sessions that we could go to. We could pick from sessions on the four majors: fashion merchandising, marketing, visual merchandising, and management; career development; study abroad and student life; financial services; and student Q&A.  I went to fashion merchandising, marketing, management, and career development. They were all very informative. Overall, I was really impressed with the school. They have really promising statistics about job placement after graduation and they seem really geared toward helping you make the connections that you need to make it in the fashion industry, much more so than FIT did when I went for the admitted student’s day there. In the end, I am really happy I went to visit. I am not sure what will come of this, though. The school is very expensive and I feel like I should have a more concrete idea of what it is I want to do for a career before I go there. It will already be tough going in as a transfer student and I don’t want to go there and start taking all the classes for one major and then deciding last-minute that I want to do something else and potentially have to stay in school longer than I originally planned.

Once the open house was over-we skipped the tour of the residence halls-we tried to find someplace to go for lunch. We normally like going to Pret A Manger, which has a lot of fresh sandwiches, soups and salads and is so yummy. We headed up to Park Avenue just a few blocks over where there was supposed to be one, but it was closed. We headed down to Madison Avenue’s location but that was closed also. We must have forgotten that the restaurants in the more business-y area of towns are usually closed on weekends because they don’t get as much business. Well, because of my plans going down the drain I was in a pretty pissy mood. I feel bad for my mom that I was being such a brat, but I was just so upset. You probably know the feeling when you are expecting to get something so badly but then it never works out. We walked around for what felt like forever looking for somewhere to eat. Me being the picky eater that I am did not make this easy either. We looked at probably four different restaurant’s menus before we settled. I suggested that we check out what was in Rockefeller Center, because it was so nearby. One restaurant looked gross and another was way too expensive. My mom remembered that there was a Dean and Deluca there, so we were going to go to that only to find that it had been replaced by something else. We ended up eating in this replacement restaurant and it was okay. I really wanted some soup but the only kind they had sounded retched. I then wanted a salad but none of what they offered was acceptable. We ended up splitting a turkey sandwich on a baguette. I did not want to eat all those carbs but I was just in a terrible mood and knew I needed to eat something.

After the disastrous lunch we headed to Soho. Finally, I could do some shopping! We made a beeline for Topshop-I was going to get my fix. It was pretty overwhelming in there. For starters it is massive; there are three floors of women’s clothing and a lower level with men’s clothing which is called Topman. I was surprised that I was able to tolerate it in there too. I usually hate crowds of people when I am shopping and it was packed to the gills in there. Somehow, though, I put it in the back of my mind and focused on the fashion (not like that was difficult to do). From there we made our way to American Apparel where I bought a plain black dress to go underneath a sheer Free People dress I ordered online a week ago. After there it was Scoop. We spent very little time in there because it is just so depressing to look at all the cute clothes that I can’t afford. After our short trip there, we went over to Madewell. I got a pink and purple plaid button-down and an eggplant v-neck sweater. Just up the block was Dean and Deluca, and we got some vanilla crème wafer cookies, watermelon and drinks. After that we went to Crate and Barrel so my mom could use the restroom. Once she relieved herself, it was time to go to Urban Outfitters. I was so surprised that I didn’t find anything I liked there. Like Zara, Urban is usually hit or miss. By then it was about 6:00. I wanted to go to Bloomingdale’s, which was uptown around where our hotel was, but my mom didn’t think we would have time so we just hopped a cab (which I expertly hailed) and headed back to the hotel.

When it was 7:00 we headed out for the restaurant we were going to for dinner. It was an Italian restaurant called Marcony in midtown east on Lexington Avenue. It was quite a walk but it was nice to get the exercise in. The dinner was so good. They gave us a sample of their fried ravioli with a tomato basil sauce, which was delicious. We also we given a little bruschetta plate with bread, tomato sauce and some eggplant with garlic. It was so yummy. My mom ordered some penne pasta with Bolognese sauce and I got gnocchi with pesto. It was so good. I was going to order just plain spaghetti with tomato-basil sauce but I decided against it because I haven’t had gnocchi in a while.  I couldn’t believe it but I ate almost the whole meal.

After dinner we headed back to the hotel to call it a night. For the ride back, we finally got a typical aggressive taxi driver. We was speeding through the streets and starting to drive through intersections before the lights turned green. It was wonderful. I had the wind whipping through my hair and everything, which is a rare occurrence in a New York City cab. That night was a new episode of Saturday Night Live, but I didn’t end up staying up for it. It’s embarrassing but I fell asleep before 10:00. How lame am I?

The alarm on my phone woke me at 9:30. My mom had already been up for an hour and had showered. While I was lying in bed she got ready. Once the bathroom was open I took it over and got ready myself. Then we headed out in search of some breakfast. This was a harder task than it seemed because I refuse to eat in many places and I won’t eat somewhere that’s too expensive. We ended up at a place called Fresh & Co. My mom had a mushroom, tomato and cheese omelet with breakfast potatoes and bread and, once again, I had oatmeal with brown sugar. They had a lot of options for what to put on the oatmeal and it really irritated me when the man was acting shocked that all I wanted was brown sugar. Sorry that your watery apple chunks and browning bananas don’t appeal to me and that I like my food simple. I also got some cantaloupe.

After breakfast, we were looking for a Dean and Deluca that was nearby so we could get something to take with us on the train for lunch. When we finally got there, it wasn’t really what we expected. Unlike the one in Soho we went to the day before, this one was very small and didn’t have much already pre-prepared. There were three different salads to choose from so we each got one of those. I was craving some hazelnut coffee, but no one seems to sell it so I just got some normal coffee. We then walked back to the hotel to finish packing and head over to the train station. Our train was leaving at 12:05 and we didn’t get there until about 11:45, which is really unusual for us because we are normally a half hour early. But, when they announced our track we rushed over to it and I, as usual, pushed my way ahead of many people so I could get down first. As I am writing this, I am on the train; we just departed a few minutes ago and I am not looking forward to a 3-hour-long train ride filled with reading for history. I am jealous that my mom has a crossword puzzle book (that I so kindly bought her in the train station) to keep her occupied. I may have to bum one off her when I get too bored reading about dead people and past events.

Before we left for the trip, my Dad told me that my Aunt Nancy is in town from Texas and that my grandfather wants to take us all out for dinner at Dutch’s Daughter tonight. I wish that she had come in town another weekend because I really don’t want to eat out three nights in a row. I just want to get back to my dorm and work on homework so I have less to do through the week. However, I will just suck it up and go out with them. I haven’t seen my aunt in a long time and it will be nice to catch up. Plus, she hasn’t seen me since I restored my weight and it will be nice for her to have a new image of my body in her mind. I want her to see how happy I am instead of the depressed and numb state I was in when I saw her last. Plus, she is hilarious so it will be nice to have someone to crack jokes throughout dinner. Going out to Dutch’s will be a nice transition from the wonderful food that we have been having in New York, also. It would be hard to go from the unparalleled food in New York to the sub-par food of the dining hall on campus. Also, Dutch’s Daughter is one of the best restaurants in Frederick and I know a lot of people who work there so I might see someone from high school and get to catch up a little bit.

Well, this is easily the longest blog I have written so far. I will probably not write one this long ever again, also. I had to type it on Microsoft Word because I didn’t have any internet connection in NYC and it’s 6 pages long, single spaced. Why can’t I write a paper for class this long in such a short amount of time? That would certainly be awesome. I’m going to wrap things up and get my books open and try to knock out this homework so I can just work on my psych essay when I get home before dinner. Thank you for taking the time to read it all if you made it all the way to the end, I know it was probably pretty boring. J

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2 thoughts on “Taking A Bite Of The Big Apple

  1. If you do end up deciding on NYC for school, I’d be glad to answer any questions you have about being a student in the City. 🙂

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