Tuesday, September 16, 2014

When in doubt, Vacation.

So in following with the trend of quirky things that happen in my life, I'd like to tell you the story of my trip to NYC and Bethlehem PA to visit my very good friend and sister (&co.)

It began as any trip would. I woke up early to get the the airport, there was no one in line for check-in, I flew through security and no one was kidnapped this time and taken to a dark room, I had fed myself beforehand, I found a comfy chair to read the rest of my Agatha Raisin book, things are looking real good today. Twenty minutes before the flight I receive an email (note email, this will be important way later) telling me that the plane that was supposed to pick me up and take me to Chicago has just left the airport. Clearly if they were having difficulties long before take off and they could have emailed us all sooner...

Anyway, I call my dear friend, and get a direct flight, get some food, go to the new terminal. Delayed. Due to "raining." However, an insider told the weather there was actually quite nice. Anyway, I am forced to call my friend back and discuss the situation since we had planned to see a one act play about Bertold Brecht at 5 and sadly I wasn't likely to get there on time anymore because of course. All day in CVG is really why I took a personal day at work. Don't allow me to tell you otherwise. But I do eventually leave. Huzzah.

And when I land, I'm very excited. Yes, finally! A cabbie asks if I need a cab, he grabs my bag, and I get in. It then crosses my mind that I have gotten into a black cab and not a yellow one. No worries, gentle readers, twas a real cab. I was not kidnapped and killed. Only charged like three times the normal rate.

But we're not going to dwell on that currently, because I arrive at my friend's apartment! ALL WILL BE WELL. Except for the fact that when I went to get the key from under the mat, it was not there.

So I did what anyone would do in my situation. I posted semi-crazed pictures to my snap chat story and played CandyCrush. A fact of which I remain unashamed. My friend rushed home and we got some Italian and then took a walk in the park, drinking wine out of Starbucks to go cup. Super classy, super fun. We caught each other up on all the latest gossip, it was like, oh my gawd, so great. (I'm just kidding. We don't talk like that.) After that we went to a piano bar which was SOSOSO amazing. The pianist could play quite literally anything you requested. My friend informed me that was quite normal, but I still remain heartily impressed.
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Then we made our way home and called it a night, but not before accusations were cast about how I skipped gym class like 20 years ago and left my dear friend without a friend or partner to do the heinous activities with. Who-
Ok I did and I apologized. It will never happen again.
The next morning, after sleeping in, we got delicious sausage egg and cheese bagels. A true breakfast of champions before making our way to the MET, where we took some excellent pictures.
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Followed by frolicking in Central Park.
That was exhausting but the night has just begun!
My friend and I met up with her boyfriend for dinner in Times Square, which was, in another time, an old Baptist church. And since we had time, we ordered dessert. Naturally since we're both adults, my friend and I order gelato bears. Hers was cute, mine came out maimed.
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After which, we saw Once. The Tony award winning musical. All of the actors also played all the instruments, so that was way amazeballs: they sing, they dance, they play their own instruments... Often at the same time.  Good stuff. The story was cute and sad, and I loved it. 
The next day we took the ferry to Staten Island to see the Statue of Liberty/ Brooklyn Bridge and I got some nice skyline pictures. Followed by lunch in the FiDi where I saw a beach outside a Starbucks, no joke, and not even slightly ashamed of myself for taking a picture of it even though there were some "tourist" grumblings. GUYS. There was a simulated beach in the middle of the FiDi in front of a Starbucks. It was my duty to take a picture. We explored all over Chinatown, Little Italy, Soho, and ended up by NYU, where, using my friend's ID, I broke into the library to use the restroom. Not a glamorous mission, but wholy successful and a miracle to boot because I am not blonde in the slightest. We again met up with her boyfriend for dinner where I saw this:
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Someone in NYC is reppin' Cincinnati.
We went home. They gave me directions for all my solo adventures for the next day (as they were leaving me to go to a wedding) and then I went to bed- better for an earlier start and mostly because going out on the town is not my cup of tea.
But awake early I did, packed and got myself ready to go take on the day. Headed to Central Park where I meandered for the whole morning, carrying into the early afternoon. I made my way back to Times Square, with my only real detour being for a half pound of hot tamales at Radio City Music Hall. It's about one o'clock, an hour before I am to see "A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder," and I remember my friends telling me how Port Authority Bus Terminal is a nightmare. So I decide that I should get my ticket to Bethlehem sooner rather than later. And thank God I did, because PABT is horrendous. It took me an hour just to find out where they sold the tickets. But buy it I do and get to GGLAM, as tumblr likes to abbreviate it. But I notice on my ticket that instead of saying I am going to Bethlehem PA, it says I'm on the NJ line. This is disconcerting as the show is about to start and I am unable to do anything about it. So I text my sister to figure it out for me and she texts me at intermission that as strange as that sounds, we're good.
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So the show was terrific. Y'all should definitely at least watch their Tony performance.
Getting home was an adventure. Apparently the subway changes on the weekends. That would have been nice to know. Two angry hours later I get back to my friend's apartment and IMMEDIATELY have to grab my stuff and go BACK to PABT for my bus to Bethlehem. My sister called and was like, "I'm so excited to see you soon" and I was all "NOT NOW I CANNOT EVEN"
So with bags in tow, I make my way to PABT. I look down at my ticket and it says "42." I shit you not, that's it. I don't see any signs for "42" and my bus leaves in ten minutes. I ask for help. "Go down the stairs and take a left." There are two signs, one for like 28-36 and one for 48-52.
I explore them both. And find out it's located on the lower level and am just so relieved I don't even care how poorly marked that was. Right before we get to the Bethlehem casino (because that's where the bus is really going) a man asks that since I'm not going into the casino, if he can buy the free casino chips I would get off me. It was a mildly sketchy transaction, but in the end he gave me directions to the front of the casino where my sister was picking me up and $17 in cash, so I'm going to call it a win.
The rest of the weekend was calm with my sister and her family. Building Ikea furniture and watching Sabrina the Teenage Witch 90% of the time. But we also explored historic Bethlehem and had dessert in their fancy hotel. Plus my niece is a cutie.
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My last day, we all, including baby Grace drove to Brooklyn where we had burgers with two friends before my sister drove me to the airport. Where my flight out was AGAIN delayed and I missed my connecting flight. They had apparently emailed me the flight I was SUPPOSED to get on instead but since O'Hare wifi was jacked up, guess who got the message? Not this girl. It was extremely stressful, I shant bore you. But I waited on stand by and got the last flight to CVG.

Except for flying through an electrical storm the rest of the trip was uneventful and I was back to get home to my dog. I shant be taking any further vacations for quite some time I should think.
Dasvidaniya, New York.

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