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NYC trip - Qualified Perceptions
firstfrost
firstfrost
NYC trip
For a city so full of theater, and so full of restaurants I haven't been to yet, I don't know why I haven't gone to New York City more. Anyway, this weekend pretty much doubled my exposure to it, and was a good Mad Adventure. This is the second recent vacation in which I've travelled out of winter into spring, though it appears to have suddenly become spring in Boston at the same time.

desireearmfeldt had this Not A Plan to go see Coast of Utopia (Tom Stoppard's trilogy about Russian pre-revolutionaries) in marathon, and I got to be Czar of Planning. :) Seven people just fit in the van, and just fit ni a three-bedroom apartment. We stayed at the eccentrically-named WooGo apartments - as a place to sleep and sit down, it was perfectly reasonable, convenient, and cheap. Had we been planning to spend the entire time inside the apartment, the odd lamenesses like "dishes but no dish soap" and "cans with no can opener" might have mattered, but who goes to New York to stay in their room?

We went out for Midnight Snacks at a nearby Cuban restaurant (maybe even more than their fancy restaurants, I envy New Yorkers the number of places that are open at two in the morning...), which had very loud but lively and live music. There wasn't much room for dancing, but those who were, were a lot of fun to watch (including one gentleman described by... um, wait, what do we call her? Ireland Girl? I'll never be able to finish this!... as "Early Michael Jackson goes to Cuba".)

We had Adventurous Breakfast before Utopia, with Baskets of Bread and Bowls of Coffee or Tea. And waffles and things. I got a takeout menu for ricedog, only to discover that they are a chain with places in New York and California, which seemed somewhat anticlimactic. And they gave us a postcard with our bill!

Then, Coast of Utopia. I liked the first one of the three best - partly because of all the characters, I liked watching Michael Bakunin most (played by Ethan Hawke), and the first play is mostly his. Vissarion Belinsky was also fun to watch, though he doesn't look at all like I imagine a Vissarion to look. (I suppose he had the name first). Lovely staging, though I found the set for the third play a little more surreal than the others. Most of the subplots trailed off oddly; I would have liked more arc and resolution to what was happening to people, but I guess Stoppard was going for the Broad Canvas rather than Storytelling.

Having been breakfasted out, we mostly foraged for apples and cheese at the nearby greenmarket. I was not impressed by my apple, but the cheese was very nice. Then we sat under the blooming cherry trees and lazed about until the second show. Dinner was at an Italian place not quite as nearby as would have been convenient, and a bit tight on both space and time (there just wasn't room for the two rows of tables they had stuffed into the corridor which led to both the kitchen and the bathroom - though watching the ballet of waiters passing each other in the not-enough-space was strangely compelling). Mango seems to be the Drink Ingredient of the Weekend.

For Sunday, we stood in line at TKTS. My champion (harrock) was defeated in combat by Ireland Girl's champion (justom), so we saw Grey Gardens instead of Drowsy Chaperone. Good music, good acting, creepily depressing plot (based on the transition from Rich Socialites to reclusive impoverished cat people, with the corresponding transition from Beautiful Mansion to Decaying Hulk). It's about the death of hopes and dreams, either by deliberate sabotage or slow atrophy, or maybe about learning to be content after your life has closed in on you. I am much happier with it all now that I have looked up the story, and know that after the mother died, the daughter sold the house, which has since been restored to splendour, and the daughter travelled and finally retired to a beach house in Florida.

We also went to Bar Americain, which is a Bobby Flay restaurant (for those of you who watched Iron Chef, he's the one that earned the ire of the Japanese chefs by standing on his cutting board). Best bacon ever! As well as extraordinary lamb sausages and various other Food of Decadence and Excitement.

To work off our bacon and other tasty calories, we wandered around Central Park for a while. There were two people walking their cats on leashes, which I found remarkable. Are New York cats better behaved than cats elsewhere?

Then, finally, home again, which is also a nice place to be.

Current Mood: happy home

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Comments
rifmeister From: rifmeister Date: April 23rd, 2007 04:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
You are truly a mighty adventurer.
chenoameg From: chenoameg Date: April 23rd, 2007 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
That sounds like a really neat weekend!
ricedog From: ricedog Date: April 25th, 2007 03:29 am (UTC) (Link)

anticlimactic menus

Yeah, and it makes them hard to file.
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