Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas in NYC, part 2

The Union Square Greenmarket!  My absolutely favorite place in NYC to waste time is Union Square Park.  The farmer's market is always a fun stroll.  Anywhere that you can find organic Christmas Trees, fresh apple cider that tastes like it's been stirred with cinnamon bark, and a community compost heap, is definitely my kind of place.  This time of year also brings the Union Square Holiday Market, in addition to the Greenmarket.  Woohoo!  I managed to find 2 handmade ornaments for next year.  (It's a secret still, but Elizabeth's getting a cloissoné ornament that looks something like one of these and Finn's getting a wooden puzzle snowman ornament.)


We stayed near Madison Sqare Park, which I hadn't been to prior to this trip.  A fascinating art installation of tree houses (with no access, still scratching my head on that one) all over the park.  You can see one of the houses in the upper right corner in the photo below. 


I managed to drag Paul along for just a bit of shopping, Anthropologie (orange latte
 bowls for 50% off! If you're a NieNie reader, you'll be able to appreciate that. :), Enchanted (a wonderful Waldorf toy store), and my favorite NYC bookstore, The Strand (18 miles of books in a rather tight space; I could get lost forever).  Paul was even so generous as to carry the bags!


As we were heading up toward Rockefeller Center with Paul's aunt and uncle, who live in Queens, Uncle Joe stopped the car to switch keys to a valet key for parking, and the car wouldn't restart!   As Paul, Uncle Joe and random parking garage attendant were pushing the car out of the street, random parking garage attendant #2 didn't break the car fast enough and it rolled over Uncle Joe's foot.  See tire-print on shoe below:


As frustrating as it was to be stuck in the middle of 48th street with an uncooperative vehicle, at least we had 3+ hours until the Christmas Spectacular which we had intended to fill with shopping nearby.   The fortunate thing about breaking down on a NYC street, is that given the compactness of the city, there's bound to be something interesting nearby.  Aunt Karen and I decided that there are worse places to break down...


than directly in front of a Irish Pub.


When 1 hour hedged closer to 2 without a tow truck in sight, it began to look like Uncle Joe and Aunt Karen would miss the Christmas Spectacular, which is exactly what happened although they did make it back in time to dine with us after the show.  Another quite fascinating NYC sight: the traffic stopped while a tow truck loads Uncle Joe's car.


The rest of the trip was, fortunately, less eventful.  We dined at some fabulous NYC vegetarian restaurants.  (Quantum Leap, we miss you already!)  Then, of course, I was stricken on my last day in NYC with a death-cold that has finally begun to dissipate.  (Thanks for the get well wishes!)

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