This past weekend, Andrew and I ‘got away’ for a few days to New York City–about a 6-hr. drive from Buffalo–at the tail end of my spring break. Between school, homework and the ongoing pantry project, we both needed a vacation. However, as with all vacations (especially ours), rarely are they as relaxing as we’d like…
I snapped photos of just about everything…here is day 1 of the trip:
We left at lunchtime on Thursday and had picked up in-car snacks the night before, to both provide me with some healthier options and to prevent the infamous “Oh look! Ice cream! Let’s stop!” cries from the passenger seat.
Holly’s in-car lunch: apples, almond butter, grapes, hummus and carrot sticks.
Andrew’s in-car lunch: Mighty Taco on the way out of East Aurora.
My health-kick lasted about an hour before the snacks came out: Pringles (for him), Fig Newtons (again, an Andrew pick but equally liked by me), Powerade and jelly beans. My healthy snacks included some dried fruit and nuts, white cheddar popcorn (OK, that was really Andrew’s pick) and some ‘healthier’ chips. (All were opened–except the chips–but much remained uneaten. Next time: exercise more restraint at Wegmans!) We may have gotten into the Easter candy a little early…
Look! There’s the city! We drove in through Hoboken, NJ, and entered via the Lincoln Tunnel. By the time we pulled up at our hotel on 40th and 8th, it was dark.
Our FOUR-MONTH STAY (yes, I am yelling) at the Staybridge here in West Seneca while we were house-hunting earned us enough points to get a room near Times Square for three nights. So worth it.
Shortly after arriving, arranging for the car to be parked and tipping the bellhop who brought us our bags, we headed out for dinner via the subway. Andrew had, in true Andrew-fashion, written up a minute-by-minute itinerary of our trip. I love that man. Thursday night’s dinner: perhaps the most famous Jewish deli in all of NYC, Katz’s Delicatessen in the East Village.
The menu features all sorts of meats on rye, such as brisket or pastrami, as well as matzo ball and split-pea soups. You order at the counter at the appropriate station (drinks, sides and sandwiches all have their own place) and hand the staff member filling your order the ticket you were given when you entered. They mark the price and hand it back to you.
Andrew got a brisket sandwich and I got a half-pastrami on rye (oh my heavens, that meat was amazing) and a matzo ball soup to share. Two kinds of pickles come with your sandwiches–the bright green ones were more cucumber than pickle and I loved them. I also tried a New York egg cream in vanilla.
After paying and handing back our unused ticket (each person gets a ticket, but in a group they tally the charges on just one–we were warned we had to hand in the extra one upon leaving or be charged $50!), we headed out with very full bellies.
While wandering around, we stumbled–literally–upon this place:
The Clinton Street Baking Company! Yes, I have their cookbook. They are famous for their pancakes, but are open for lunch and dinner and drinks, too. Andrew offered to take me in, but I turned him down; I had no more room! No, we didn’t eat there. Yes, it will be a stop on our next trip. (And yes, we’re already thinking we may try to steal away in the fall for NYC round 2.)
After walking a few blocks, getting momentarily lost and also finding a cute Cuban place we added to the agenda for later, we took the subway back toward our hotel and got off at Times Square:
Mind you, this is now probably 10 p.m. or later. Times Square is perhaps the most awake, alive, loud, frenetic place you could be at night. Except maybe Vegas. Even the stores (like American Eagle or Levi’s) are open past midnight to cater to shoppers (a.k.a. tourists) still awake and going.
Up next: Friday!