I was seriously out of it when the wake-up call came in. The plan was to get to Brooklyn for brunch with Josh and Jennifer at around 11:00AM. Hahahahahaha.
It took some extra time just to get coherent and semi-presentable.
We had to get on the F train to Brooklyn and hubby said the concierge had told him we could do that out of Grand Central Station. WRONG!!!! We had to get on the 6 and then transfer. Hubby got all nostalgic walking around Grand Central Station, meanwhile I was just getting claustrophobic and paranoid.
Once you’ve known BART the NY City Subway loses its charm.
Anyway, we did the whole 6 to F thing and then it turned out (which Jenny had told hubby so he was prepared) that due to construction we had to actually go two stops past the closest stop and then run downstairs and upstairs to take the train back. The announcement that this was happening was completely incoherent, no matter how many times they made it, which was several.
Some background on Josh and Jenny.
Josh’s parents, my aunt and uncle, are nuts. As in religious nuts. They went from being hippies who came to San Francisco in the 70’s to sell Earth Shoes, to being Lubavitcher Jews, which is the Jewish equivalent of a fundamentalist born-again Christian. Josh’s father once earned my father’s undying enmity by saying “We’re the real Jews and the rest of you can call yourselves what you want.”
He was raised in that environment in a Lubavitcher enclave of Marin County and got the hell out as soon as he could, going to Columbia, then spending some time teaching English to kids in Korea and then traveling in India and Tibet. Jenny is the most adorable, soft-spoken, sweet little Wasp girl I’ve ever met. When they got married in a beautiful outdoor ceremony in Southern California, Josh’s parents attended under duress and I’m still not sure they actually accept the marriage.
Josh is now working for the Korean delegation to the UN and Jenny does something that means she travels a lot, I’m not clear on what it is exactly, but it involves trains.
They live an absolutely adorable section of Brooklyn near the Gowanus canal, that reminded me a lot of North Beach and a little of the East Village. They are really happy and I’m really happy for them.
Their go-to brunch place is right next door to the apartment and it’s called “Scaramouche”.
Rather than just me, hubby, Jenny, Josh, there were about 6 or 7 people, friends of Josh&Jenny, all of whom were fascinating and cool people. This worked well because if it’s just the two cousins and two spousals over a long period of time, I think the conversation can get very insular and the added personalities kept Josh&I from rehashing family stories to death.
My food was good, although hubby was underwhelmed by the eggs benedict.
After brunch, the group broke up and Josh&Jenny walkwalkwalked us all over their little corner of heaven in Brooklyn, which was nice, although I was wearing New Balance instead of my Crocs and my feet/back started giving out, so anywhere I could take a sit-down I did, which also gave me time to whip out the notebook as I had letters looming and was especially concerned about U.
Once we had returned from the grand tour, including the famed Gowanus Canal, Josh was kind enough to boot up his computer and go to You Tube so I could watch a bit of U2 at Live Aid since by that time, I’d already eliminated The Usual Suspects and Underdog, although I did enjoy the idea of the first line, “Sweet Polly Purebred was a bitch.”
We needed to get back to Manhattan. Hubby had two things he wanted to do in NYC, one was walk around the Village and the other was see a Broadway show. He’d gotten tickets that morning for the show, so we needed to do the Village walking.
On one of our previous trips we had the extreme disappointment of going to the Famous Rays for pizza and having a San Francisco freak-out when the mushrooms were canned. I guess that’s usual for NY, but you don’t get away with that shit in San Francisco. Anyway, he wanted to go back to Rays and get a pizza slice that didn’t involve mushrooms so his illusions of great NY pizza could be restored. We did that, and some walking, and then jumped in a cab uptown to the Circle In The Square for “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee.”
The show was really cute and the music was good, although as with so much of what is passing for musical theater these days, there were no great songs. Shout-out to my Daily Show peeps-Mo Rocca was in the show playing Vice Principal Panch. I gotta say, the part seemed practically written for his comic persona, but he did a really good job.
Hubby really wanted to see Wicked, but it was only available for matinee and we wouldn’t have made it back in time or would have had to rush the visit with Josh&Jenny. Rent was also a possibility, but I explained what the show was about and I think that dissuaded him. (The last Broadway show we saw was The Life and that was such a total downer, I didn’t think he wanted to hit that period in NY or the whole drugs/aids thing.)This was basically fluff, which for a Broadway musical (as opposed to a House/Wilson fanfic) is perfectly acceptable.
After the show, we walked out into the post-theater frenzy of Times Square. Hubby wanted a Yankees cap so we had to dive into the thick of it, although I was totally getting freaked out by the crowd. Just too much for the San Franciscan I’ve become. I just wanted to get out of the mob, but hubby wanted the cap. We got that, but then he wanted a Bronx sweatshirt and that was nowhere to be found.
Again, I didn’t FEEL hungry, but I needed to eat. I didn’t want to eat in a chain restaurant or a tourist trap. It took a long time to decide he wasn’t going to find the Bronx Sweatshirt and then get us out of the crowd zone. By that time it was nearly 1130PM on Sunday night and getting hard to find an open restaurant. (If we’d done the chain or tourist trap, it wouldn’t have been a problem.) I was also starting to freak about how much longer I had on the internet connection I’d bought for 24 hours at the hotel and I still had to post T.
Hubby was freaking out about my freaking out because it’s not pretty. We got back to the hotel restaurant just as the kitchen was closing, but convinced them to serve us anyway. I ran up to the room where I did have a Free Dinner cert for restaurant as well. All I ended up having was some soup and appetizers, but it totally hit the spot and even though the certificate didn’t cover the drinks (Sprite & Decaf, in our case) it was still some kind of discount.
I still had an hour on the internet and managed to post a chat a bit before crashing and burning, knowing there wasn’t much lee-way to oversleep in the AM because we were heading for Boston.
Coming up next-BOSTON