Thursday, March 19, 2009

On My Spring Break Vacation

My husband and I went to New York City for a few days over Spring Break. Visiting the Big Apple is always new no matter how many times I go. I must say I can tell I'm getting older. The very things I loved about New York in my late teens and early twenties I absolutely hate now--crowds, over-stimulating lights and signs, traffic, late nights, high heels, everyone wearing black, one in every 100 people speaking English. I find it amusing about myself how much I've changed.

Wearing tennis shoes is of course a dead give away that you're a tourist unless you are wearing work out clothes and carrying an iPod. Since I didn't take work out clothes to New York, I dutifully changed out of my tennis shoes as often as I could stand it. But walking in my sorely out-of-fashion-but-at-least-they-were-black knee high boots with 2 inch stacked heels was a big mistake for my flat footed self. I enjoy a good walk as much as the next person, but I think I gave myself a heel spur and my arches and calf muscles are in agony. Luckily for me, jeans are still in. So every day I put on my one pair of designer jeans. They are comfortable, fit well, and I had them hemmed for flats so they didn't gather too much at the bottom--also uncool.
And why is it that New York, fashion capital of the country, is still so insanely into black? I felt like I was in Europe the whole time. I'm no fashionista. I have neither the time, the money, nor the interest to give two cents to what is "in". I'm woefully trapped in wash-n-wear from LL Bean and Lands End and Old Navy with the occasional Talbot's sweater or dry clean only skirt. So I try to wear a few colors to brighten up my sadly plain weekday wardrobe. Apparently color is not cool either. I don't understand, I watched Sex in the City and they wore colors all the time. Anyway, 24 hours after my arrival I found myself buying a fabulous black belted knee length trench coat in black from Banana Republic that was on sale. I've had my eye on it for a while (it's pretty snazzy for me) but I needed a little push for the purchase. Needless to say I wore it day and night with my black scarf and black gloves and black boots and my jeans. I felt a little better about my attempt to look vaguely like a New Yorker--even though my shoulders are stiff, my neck is still itchy from the scarf, and my ankles may never be the same. In other fashion news, Ugg--LY boots are still very much in. It's like the 80's. Skinny jeans tucked into boots (with no heel now unless you're bravely walking in stilettos), colored tights are back--with black clothes of course, and huge purses continue to dominate the landscape--purses can be different colors. Apparently only accessories are allowed to come in more than one shade.

Other Stuff:
We saw some great shows! Avenue Q, A Night with George W. Bush (Will Ferrell's one man show), and Stomp! All excellent. We also got lottery tickets to a taping of the Dave Letterman show. That was very entertaining.
I broke my Lenten fast from alcohol and caffeine. It seemed more sacreligious to forgo the red wine while eating excellent Italian on vacation with my husband without our children and a serious possibility of sex. Of course, the next day, a diet coke was in order to function. Plus we were in Chinatown having an early lunch of Dim Sum and I had already downed the green tea which was chock full of caffeine, so I figure why not go the whole hog before returning to purgatory?
We went to Ellis Island. The audio tour is very good. We went to the Guggenheim Museum--coulda skipped that. I like art. I appreciate art. Alas, I don't understand modern art very much at all. We rode the subway, walked all over, shopped, slept late, and ate many more marvelous meals. No dishes, no screaming kids, no cooking, no driving, no housecleaning. And we caught a few minutes of the St. Patty's Day parade that went up 5th avenue all day on Tuesday.
Needless to say we had a super super time.

The Return:
So after several airline delays we arrived back in Chattanooga via Delta. I was reminded again why I prefer to fly Frontier out of Nashville and why I never fly out of Chattanooga unless it can be avoided. However, our flights were never cancelled and we did arrive safely and at a reasonable time, so I am grateful for small things even though I moaned like the weary traveller I was.
We arrived home at 3:05. Hugs, kisses, and presents all around. My older son was showing off and the baby had a green nose and a croupy cough. Typical. At 3:20 I discovered what looked like a snot explosion in the baby's right ear. I was back in the car and headed down the mountain by 3:25 and in the doctor's office by 4. Ear infection. So a trip to the pharmacy and the grocery store later with a quick stop at the Pumpkin Patch to play, I was back home washing dishes, making dinner, changing sheets, soothing a sick boy and disciplining my other one. Showers, medicine giving, and teeth brushing commenced shortly thereafter, and everyone was asleep by 8. A little tv, another load of laundry, a check on the boys, finally a quick check of my email and facebook--which I didn't even miss while away--and I collapsed in bed around 1130. I'm back from vacation alright. It's amazing how you step right back into it and it doesn't even phase you. What a vacation. By Saturday I'll need another one, but for now, I'm grateful and happy to be home. It isn't New York, but it's my life and it's always a colorful one, and I'm alright with that.

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