Sunday, April 17, 2016

End of DC and all of NYC

[[Final, time-delayed report of our exciting trip to The East Coast. See earlier installments here, here, and here. This post was written on the flight back to Seattle. By now, we've been home for almost a week and we both have the flu. Wheeee!]]

I suppose it’s not entirely surprising—and perhaps it won’t be a huge disappointment to the readers of blahdeblahblah—that on the fourth through sixth, or maybe even seventh, day. I rested, or at least failed to write daily reports. Now I’m even vague as to how many days it has been.

Friday was the travel day so after clearing out of our charming, but still wi-fi–challenged apartment, we dropped our luggage at the baggage storage at Union Station and then caught the red line to the National Zoo, which like most of DC’s federal attractions, is free. If I’ve not mentioned it in an earlier post, I’ll say now, DC is a fabulous spot for families and the budget-conscious because, once you’ve got a place to stay, pretty much everything else is free. Well, you still have to pay for your food, but museums, monuments, etc. are largely free—which maybe explains the crowds everywhere.

We didn’t have a ton of time at the zoo so we made pretty directly for the prime attraction: the
No autographs, please
YouTube star panda. There was no snow, but the adult enjoyed some bamboo on what was once the snowy hill while the youngster parked itself high in a fir tree. We also had a look at some of the other animals including the bison, the lions, and, thanks to some help from a zoo volunteer, the cheetah that I initially took for a log. All too soon it was time to get back to the station where I did my best to make us miss the train, or so it might have seemed to an outside observer.

Ring-tailed lemurs were quite frolicsome at the zoo
The train between DC and NYC has many stops but it was lovely to see the woods and the houses and buildings as we chugged along. There is a lot of water along the way as well. Penn Station, in NYC, was a madhouse, a word I somehow think I’ve used more than once in this travelogue. After a string of voicemails and texts (“Where are you? We’re on the first level.” “Go up the escalator.” “We went up the escalator and now we’re outside where it’s damned cold; where are you?” “Just stay there.”), we met up with the Wohlreillys and great was the rejoicing—as well as bitching about the cold. The sketchiness of this report is about to become ever so much more sketchy.

NYC is an amazing city and we had a fabulous time visiting the Frick (which was on the list; no photos as photography is not allowed there) and also Prospect Park (which I’d never really heard of before) and deciding to drop the plan to go to the Met (it seems that one can just be museumed out after a few days), and, sadly, not making it the Cloisters. Again.

The Wohlreillys know the most excellent places for everything so we had a lovely meal at Palo Santo on Friday and heard the most amazing band, Anbessa Orchestra, at Barbes Saturday night. Sunday, which would be last night, meaning that this must be Monday and Monday must be the seventh day, Sunday night we walked across the Brooklyn Bridge which is even more gorgeous at night than it is during the day, and we stayed up far too late drinking every drop in their place and talking about everything under the sun.
Frolicking on the Brooklyn Bridge
 This morning started late so it’s fortunate that Dizzy’s serves breakfast all day. We wandered a bit, hitting  Greenlight Bookstore and a bagel shop before stopping briefly back at the Wohlreilly condo to collect our luggage and then hurried along to the nearest Long Island Railroad station where, thanks to some masterful maneuvering during which I was a complete bystander, Scott and I caught the 3:56 train to Jamaica where we transferred to the train to JFK.  Maybe, Imaginary Reader, you ask why you’ve read this dull report. I assure you that this LIR to JFK travel tip is well worth wading through all the rest.

 I add as my final travel pointer that JFK’s C terminal is sadly lacking in decent fleshpots but that apparently no one is going to object if you drink a can of beer while waiting at the C45 gate. Which you would have been wanting to do yourself if you were me and realized, far too late, that your compression sleeve and glove were in that bag that was, by now, irrecoverably checked. Fingers crossed that this scarf I’ve wrapped around the delicate left will be more effective than seems likely.
View towards Lower Manhattan from the Brooklyn Bridge

To come, maybe,  a post all about birds!


  1. Nice bridge. Birds would be nice, too. I mean, you don't go to NYC in Spring and not go to Central Park to look for migrating warblers, right? Please say you did that!

    1. We walked through a corner of Central Park on a rainy gray day and saw a statue of Shakespeare. There may have been some robins around as well.

    2. Well, you just have to go back, then! I live vicariously through your far-flung bird sightings, after all. And it's all about me, of course.

      Speaking of Will, have you gone to see the folio at the Central Library yet?

    3. We saw the folio last month, yes! It's open to "Hamlet." I thought that was funny.

    4. I've got to say it's handy having Scott to act as my secretary. As he has already implied, our Central Park time was limited to walking across a corner of it in some very crappy weather during which we saw minimal birds. Brooklyn's Prospect Park was a lot more rewarding. If I can just stay alive long enough to pull those notes together . . .