Lesson learned: Don’t wear flip flops while exploring around the Times Square/Central Park area. I made the four mile trek up to Central Park from East 14th Street just fine, once I entered the park, my feet became my enemy. Not only did I stumble up the rocky masses by the lake, I had to stop repeatedly to reposition my flip flop after it fell off six times (I counted). I could ignore the pain enough to enjoy every part of the many athletic beings sweating through the park, sounds the street entertainers brought, and the always-comforting company of one of my favorite people — my cousin, Bryan. (I actually don’t know what to call him… he plays a lot of different roles in my life — cousin-in-law, dad, friend, counselor, joker…)
Bryan flew into New York early Sunday to spend the day with me before his busy week of meetings at Ernst & Young, which was the best idea ever. We grabbed coffee from Starbucks (I, of course, ordered a frap) and headed north toward Times Square, keeping our eyes out for a subway entrance. We never found that subway entrance partially because we were on the wrong streets, but mainly because we were engrossed in conversation and enjoying the New York personality. We ended up walking four miles and had reached our destination of Central Park. First time for both of us.
Central Park was delightful with amateur soccer and baseball games going on, various characters gliding, riding, and strolling around the park, and horse drawn carriages. The temporary and drawn out “neh” of a horse made me wish I had a recorder and wonder if the horse was in pain or pissed off at the driver. I couldn’t quite tell, but if I were the horse, I’d be letting out the stress of pulling such a heavy thing and taking crap from a snippy driver. I’ll let the pictures tell you more about our venture through one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen.
As the day progressed, we went to the Toys R Us store, M&M store, swung by the David Letterman building, and hit up other Times Square key features. I made Bryan ride the Toys R Us Ferris Wheel, which was awesome. He will never admit that he was excited but once we were on, he buckled up and the sparkle in his eye twinkled. haha… no, no, no, but he was game for riding and we did get his Ferris Wheel car pick — the fire truck. I wanted the My Little Pony car but nooooooo. Overall, it was great and so fun. The M&M store was stocked full of all things M&M — pillows, cups, green M&M Statue of Libertys, pens, and of course, rows and rows of colored M&Ms, mixed M&Ms (even a princess mix with pink, purple, and yellow ones).
We met Des for dinner at Rogue, a grill and bar on 25th and the Avenue of the Americas, to watch the Celtics and Lakers game and to eat dinner, drink, and be merry. We talked about toilet paper rolls and how many songs related to toilet paper rolls (inside joke, sorry readers who aren’t Des or Bryan). We looked on as a die-hard Celtics fan who looked Chinese but wasn’t would clap like a heavy cheerleader and pump his fist at the screen, nearly punching the bartender each time. He was the most entertaining person we’ve encountered in NYC yet. Well, maybe not… that guy who wanted to “lick ya ass” is a close tie. Long story short: it was a great company, heartfelt laughing, and memorable day in NYC with one of the best.