NYC Trip

So… in case you somehow missed the memo. I was in NYC last week. A part of my heart will always remain in NYC. And no, that is not because the Yankees play there. Since I provided a report on the 5K I ran while there, I thought I would do a post on the rest of the trip…

I had left the booking to Eric. He found a hotel in the Murray Hill area that was decently priced and he choose the flights that we take there and home. Originally, I was going to work out of the NYC office but obviously that was no longer the case… so I just had a really fun vacation to look forward to.

We had a VERY early flight out on Friday morning at 6 am and I really resent that Midway has few coffee options that early in the morning. I may not NEED coffee but I enjoy it so don’t give me icky coffee at 4:30 in the morning. It was an uneventful flight and I tried to sleep but couldn’t manage it. I was far too excited.

We landed and got our bags and into the taxi line without incident. After a trip through the tail end of rush hour, we dropped our bags off at our hotel. It was still going to be a few hours until we could check into the hotel. It worked out well since we both wanted food and needed to go to the expo.

First order of business… a decent cup of coffee. Eric managed to be a genius in this respect because there was a Starbucks across the street from the hotel. With that, we were off to go the west side of Manhattan… Except we had a lot of time before Chris‘ train would get into Penn Station. So we found a pizza place… which just happened to be right by Penn Station. So I had Chris meet us there.

We arrived at the expo and HOLY LINES!!!! The boys got IN line (Just for you Chris) while I went in search of a restroom. This was a trek in itself since the restrooms were well hidden even though the overall direction was well labeled. When I got back outside I saw the line moving quickly but couldn’t find them. So after multiple texts, I finally found them. I really do not understand how you can KNOW that 50,000 people are coming to a location and still have THAT long of a line just to get into the damn expo. Point one to Chicago on this…

After we all got our packets (the boys the marathon packets, Eric his 5K and my 5K) we wandered around the merchandise. I did find a few thing stop purchase since I wanted to document that I was actually there…. even if it was to spectate instead of run. Chris then headed back to NJ and Eric and I headed back to our hotel to check in and attempt to take naps.

When we got into the hotel room… we realized that Eric made a HUGE mistake while booking the room. There was ONE double bed in the room. And it was rather tiny… the next five nights were going to be fun… Luckily Eric knew I would have no issues kicking him out of said bed if he pissed me off… to which I added… be careful on Saturday. Note that in all reality, I wouldn’t kick him out of bed but what are best friends for if not for idle threats?

After attempting to nap, I changed to meet up with my childhood friend from NJ and we met up for dinner. I love spending time with her. Despite the years of not seeing each and the distance, whenever we get together it is like no time has passed and you would assume we talked every day. Good friends are like that 🙂

I then headed back to the hotel. It wasn’t that late but I had been up since 2:30 and was exhausted. Plus I had a race the following morning.

Eric and I were up to race on Saturday morning… with rain… Joy. You can read all about that here.

Once we got back to the hotel, we both tried to nap… which didn’t happen for me. But it wasn’t too long before we headed back out to meet up with Chris near the Theatre District to grab dinner at an Italian place. After we finished our dinner, Chris and I had a ton of time to kill before going to see If/Then. Eric headed back to the hotel and Chris and I headed to a bar to grab a drink… or two before going to the theatre. We chatted and caught up on each others lives because it had been quite a long time since we hung out. I knew nothing about the play we were going to see but with Idina Menzel as the lead, I didn’t think there was any chance of disappointment.

The play was absolutely fantastic! The general gist was the choices we make and if they change our destiny with the main theme being love. I pretty much balled my eyes out the entire second act. I highly recommend you check it out if you are in NYC!

Chris and I then walked to Grand Central station where we parted ways.

Eric was up early for the Marathon on Sunday and I did NOT sleep through it but luckily managed to fall back asleep for about an hour once he left. Sometimes I really hate being a morning person…

Prior to leaving for NYC, Erica had given me a suggestion for where to spectate. Since I knew I wanted to be on 1st to spectate but not really sure where exactly, I took her advice. She had recommended I go up to 95th. After grabbing breakfast and a cup of coffee, I headed out… with three hours to kill.

I knew this would be the case so I had always planned to walk from 29th up to 95th. But I decided to wander over to 6th and check out the Kiosk’s set up in Bryant Park for the holidays before continuing up toward 95th. At one point, I decided I wanted a scone so I headed over to one of my fav scone places… but not before getting the west and east side locations mixed up… so I had to back track a bit. Oh well… time to kill.

My other reason for walking was to stay warm. It was insanely windy and I was walking and noticing it, I knew the runners would be as well. Apparently NYC also has that whole “No matter which direction you are going it is into the wind” thing too…

I got to 95th and 1st around noon. I was there for about 15 minutes when I spotted Erica and shouted out to her. Maybe 25 minutes later I saw Chris and I could tell he was hurting… a lot. So I jumped onto the course to give him a hug… and get his attention since he didn’t see me at all before get back to the sidelines. The runner tracking told me that Eric wasn’t too far behind and they were projected to finish around the same despite Chris being in Wave 1 and Eric being in Wave 3. Magically I spotted Eric about 10 minutes before I expected to. I made sure he saw me and noted that he still looked pretty strong before I left my spot.

Here is where things got fun. The family reunion zone was on the west side of Central Park. I knew with all the road closures it would be difficult to cross Central Park so I headed over to Madison to avoid foot traffic and headed back south to go down and around Central Park to get to the west side. I stayed off main streets when I could simply because it was TOO crowded. I made it to the entrance of the reunion zone around the time Eric crossed the finish line…exactly 15 minutes after Chris. Thank you runner tracking app.

It took me about 30 minutes to get through security but I found a good spot to hang out at and sent Eric and Chris texts detailing (as best I could) where I was. It was probably another 45 minutes before I saw Chris and then shortly after I saw Eric. Chris had checked a bag whereas Eric went with the no bag check option… this meant they both found me pretty close together. But the marathon also made them both do a LOT of extra walking so I knew the first order of business was to find food. Chris and I thought alike when we both determined it best to stay west of the race so we walked over to 9th and then headed south until we found a place with a menu that appealed to all of us. Then it was back to the hotel for Eric and I while Chris headed to his car to back to NJ.

After hanging out in the hotel for a few hours, Eric and I decided to grab a drink at the bar next to our hotel. Except one drink turned into 5… compliments of making friends with the bartender. It was a lot of fun but it left me hungover on Monday…

Monday I got up and showered and then headed over to my old office to see my former co-workers and boss. It was good to see everyone and catch up.

Eric and I met up and both of us wanted food so we found a place to grab a cheap slice… gotta love NYC! We then headed up 5th toward Central Park to check out the post-marathon activities but all of the lines were too long so we headed back to the hotel. We met up with another friend of mine for dinner and then it was back to the bar next to the hotel for more drinks.

This is where things got comical and I learned just how much of my father’s daughter I am…

Eric started checking into the flight (Southwest) so I decided it would be smart to do the same thing… except I wasn’t able to. Eric looked at my email confirmation and that is when we noticed I booked my flight back for the wrong day.  SHIT!

My friend said she could put me up if needed but she lives with her BF in a studio and he doesn’t know me that well and I would still have an issue of getting into Midway way later than I wanted to by myself. Chick alone on the south side of Chicago late at night isn’t exactly on my to do list. I text Chris in a panic and found out he was driving back the next day.

It didn’t take me long to figure out I would be driving back with Chris… Southwest wanted to charge me $300 for a less than half full flight (found that out when Eric boarded) and they don’t allow stand by. Okie dokie… new plan. Take the train into NJ where Chris would pick me up. I would crash with him at his sisters place (HUGE thank you to her) and then we would drive back together on Wednesday.

Tuesday I had to call my parents and explain my snafu… which was met with humor and comments of “Must be genetic”

We had to check out of the hotel so Eric and I spent the day wandering around Manhattan before I headed to Penn Station and he headed to the airport. The trek to the train station was easy as was the actual train trip. Chris and I grabbed dinner at a bar near his sisters place before sharing the sofa bed… which was LARGER than the bed I had just shared with Eric in the hotel…

The next morning I was awake early and luckily so was Chris. We made a quick stop at the shore to see the ocean before grabbing breakfast and hitting the road.

One thing Chris warned me was that he changes the music station often and I already knew he cannot carry a tune. However, I CAN carry a tune so I figured I could just drown him out with my own singing :-p

The trip ended up being a lot of fun and we enjoyed belting it out to 80s music and various other genres of music. Including the moment when the radio played a song from If/Then which caused me to cry… again… I have a feeling the music from that show will do that from now on.

There wasn’t ONLY singing… we also did a lot of chatting. I am really glad to have him as a friend… saving my flight booking snafu butt aside, I  really enjoy spending time with him… even if it is quite off key :-p

Chris and I also both agreed that Eric would have killed us about an hour into the trip :-p

When he dropped me off at my condo around 10 pm we both agreed that we needed to do another road trip… except more planned out.

The trip was a lot of fun and I am really glad I was able to join them for it. Definitely need to make it out to NYC more often though!

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