Saturday, October 23, 2010

Manhattan Adventure #9

This month marked my fourth visit to New York City this year, a new record. This time I went with my BFF Hillary from Oregon, who had never seen the town. To confess something that's not much of a secret, I have issues with the notion of being a tourist in NYC. Much like I am, in my mind, a smoker who never took up the habit (thank God), I imagine I am a Manhattanite who does not actually, in the specific meaning of the phrase, live there. I had plans to, but then I married this DC firefighter and the commute was a bit much for him.

So in most of my sojourns to the city I make an effort to be local. Last month, when I took my daughter, I made a concession to her childish fantasies and trotted her through Times Square. This time, with Hillary, I decided to indulge her with a trip to the observation deck of the Empire State Building. You can imagine the surprise I felt when it was awesome. The view! Of course that's the whole point, but the view! My city, ALL THERE!

While we were in town, we visited Ali Baba Turkish Restaurant and the FIT museum to see the Japanese fashion exhibit. I was in Becky heaven there, looking at all the Gothic Lolita and anime-inspired clothes and living out my other fantasy life of being a thin, fashionable, permanently young Japanese girl. We then peed at Tiffany's (on the other side of the world, yes; walking is healthy) and stopped at the Macaron Cafe to pick up a half-dozen French macaroons. If you have not tried those things, please make an effort to correct that problem as soon as possible. The flavors-- French vanilla, cassis violet, matcha, dark chocolate, raspberry-- are so pure and perfect that, at $2.25 each, they make me suspicious that ALL rich people food tastes this good. I'd rather stay in denial about that and continue to pity them for missing out on the deliciousness (truly) of canned hominy, properly fried up.

Hillary had a great time, as did I. I don't expect I'll be back to Times Square or the Empire State Building again anytime soon, but I already miss the city. On the upside, my publisher has moved my book's publication date forward (i.e., closer) by six months, and with it my excuses to visit for book signings. If you ever see me signing my book at The Strand, be aware that I am on top of the world.

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