These days, each trip to New York looks completely different. Last visit, Mom and I stayed in Midtown and shuttled back and forth to Flushing Meadows for the U.S. Open. Most visits, I stay with friends in the Upper West Side. But this time, I was with SVV, we only had two quick days, and we made our base in the most fabulous Airbnb rental in the heart of the West Village.
Let’s rewind a bit: We actually paid for three days and should have gotten in on Friday, when Delta canceled our flight due to “air traffic control.” Hmmm. Seems to me if you know it’s going to be a holiday weekend, you should probably account for such things. The most frustrating part is a) that they didn’t immediately rebook them and b) that we had to waste four hours of our life calling and complaining to customer service employees’ supervisors to get justice. Oh, and of course c) they didn’t refund us for the payment we’d already made for our lodging that night.
You see, they wanted to rebook us for the following night, 24 hours after we were supposed to arrive, when we were in town for a wedding, already had expensive show tickets (not to mention a myriad of plans) and had pre-paid all of our accommodation. After one such angry call with Delta customer service—in which they told us they couldn’t help us because it was Friday night and the corporate office was closed until Tuesday, ummmm OK—I checked online to see flight availability. There was one at 5am with a connection in Atlanta that had seats available. Not ideal, as we were supposed to fly direct, but it would get us in at noon in time to see Bryan Cranston. So I called back. They said they couldn’t put us on that flight because there was only a seat in economy plus and a few in first class and we paid for coach. This is when I nearly LOST IT. They screwed us over and wouldn’t get us to NYC in as quick a manner as possible?
Finally, SVV talked sense into them and, what do you know, two seats in coach just materialized. We still haven’t been reimbursed for our lost night of accommodation, nor do I expect that to happen. (Delta is the worst, y’all. From now on, I’m only flying Southwest when it’s available on my route.)
But all that is water under the bridge because the point is that we made it. We got there at 11:30am on Saturday, just 15 tiresome hours after we should have arrived in the first place, got to our rental in the West Village at noon (God bless Laguardia and its easy access), grabbed food at a street festival, then grabbed a cupcake at Crumbs and were still to the Neil Simon Theatre for All the Way early.
Let me stop for a second and impress upon you just how fantastic this show was. I neither like politics nor know that much about U.S. history—I studied all English, writing and math during my school years—and on top of that typically only opt for musicals. But Bryan Cranston as LBJ was the stuff Tony Awards are made of, and I’d strongly encourage any friends heading to New York soon to nab a seat.
We came out of the theater and it was pouring, so we retreated down to the metro station to hop the C to Washington Square Park. We had a double date with one of my favorite travel writer friends, Annie, and her husband Andy, and I didn’t want to miss a second of time with them.
We only had roughly an hour and a half to cram in as much gabbing as we could at The Half Pint, as we had to move onto our next stop.
At this point, our trip morphed into a scene from “how to be a NYC baller like Nicole.” You may remember Nicole had visited us in Nashville last month and had all sorts of fun planned for us on our quick visit. On Friday, we had a ressie for Milk & Honey we didn’t make (thanks, Delta) but are hoping to get to next time. On Saturday, it was a private booth at The Top of the Standard (aka the Boom Boom Room).
Let’s pause and talk about these views.
That was taken with my iPhone in the bathroom. Amazing, right? You may remember the Standard being in the news because, well, just read about it for yourselves.
Can I just say, though, if you’re in New York and haven’t been, you must get there if at all possible (not sure how hard it is to book a table if you don’t have an “in” like Nicole, who works in TV and film, but you should still try; I have other friends who said it’s hit or miss depending on the night and the staff working the door).
After we’d hit our spending limit (drinks aren’t cheap when all of NYC is spread out below you), so we headed out to the boroughs on the L train for the Brooklyn Night Bazaar.
Open every Friday and Saturday, the bazaar is an hodgepodge of art, food, drink and play. It was really fun! Next time I need to get in on some blacklight mini-golf and the epic Ping-Pong tournament going on in one of the side rooms. But I did eat fig pizza and also pie, so there’s that.
Sunday was for morning coffee at Grounded, then a stroll around the West Village with my girls Paula and Trina.
We spent a little time in SoHo shopping, where surprisingly I didn’t buy a thing, though I always want every last item in the Piperlime store.
Then it was back to the West Village for a late brunch with Ryan.
I’ve wanted to go to the Little Owl since it opened a few years ago, but the restaurant is tiny, doesn’t take reservations and is always pack. But lo and behold, we walked in and—kismet—they had one table open so we nabbed it. The brunch was really good, and I loved their “cheeky” attitude.
After that, we had to get ready for the wedding, which started at 6pm, then late night we met Nicole again and our pal Kelly down at Cafe Select. Once again, Nicole gave us the VIP treatment and had us a table booked in a hidden room behind the kitchen. I love secret spots like this one!
Kelly then took us to Crocodile Lounge, where she tends bar—if you’re in the Village, definitely stop by and have her pour you a drink!
On Sunday, we headed down to the 9/11 Memorial for a spell, it being Memorial Day and all, then grabbed brunch at Sarabeth’s in TriBeCa (warning: not good, tasted like fast food) before heading to Midtown for a day-after brunch with the grooms and their families.
My BFF Lemon had just landed the previous day from her honeymoon in Hawaii, so we then squeezed in a quick couple hours in with her, as we wandered the streets of the Flatiron, where we spotted monks in mandals taking selfies with iPhones.
And then, it was time to head back to our Airbnb stay to pick up our luggage and cab it out to LGA. Such a short two days and change in one of my most favorite cities, but I’d say we made the most of it!