Well after getting off work early on Wednesday arvo because my boss was “sick of the sight of me” (thanks Brett!) I had a quick cleansing ale at the Northern Steamship gastropub with the notorious raconteur Scott A. Young.
Then it was off to the airport in one of those pimp-daddy Chryslers (only the station wagon version, which is more of a hearse), and a mercifully quick goodbye to Lucie’s parents Athol & Sylvia.
So we boarded the plane and my word Air NZ has a mackin’ movie selection – 78 all up in fact, including plenty of new releases, foreign films, and older movies. Nice work @airnewzealand. Watched Valkyrie (not bad) and Frost / Nixon (totally excellent).
We arrived in Frisco around 12 hours later and had a couple of hours to cool so me being me decided it was American beer sampling time. First up was an Anchor Steam Liberty Pale Ale, which was nice ‘n hoppy, just how I like ’em. Not a patch on an Epic Pale Ale though Luke! Then on to the famous Samuel Addams Boston Lager and it totally lived up to the hype – it’s truly a lager bulging with flavour.
Back on another plane and it was off to John F Kennedy Airport in New York, and we got a pretty good view of Colorado en route.
That was the last of the good visibility as the rest of the continent was enveloped in cloud, culminating in a fairly torrential downpour when we touched down in NYC around midnight Wednesday local time – and about 10’!
We got a yellow cab to our hostel ’The Whitehouse’ located in the Bowery near East Village, and the driver clearly graduated from the Iraqi school of offensive driving – doing way over 100 and weaving in and out of traffic while going straight through foot deep puddles. Dad, you would have loved this guy’s driving.
Anyway, we get to the Bowery around 1am and the place is, well… you get what you pays for. I then lugged our three bags (all 83kg worth) up three flights of stairs to find that our room literally wouldn’t have had enough space to swing a chihuahua in.
So we dump our bags and head out for a drink, eventually finding an Irish pub (of course) where we immediately find out we’re sitting next to some Australians. Only one of which was completely obnoxiously drunk. Very much enjoyed several Sierra Nevada Pale Ales.
After about 4 hours sleep we got up, I lugged our bags back down again, and got in a cab to head to the apartment we’re renting for the rest of our stay. This place is small, but really tidy, in a great location (it’s much nicer than it looks on Google Street view, must be old photos) and pretty much totally sweet.
We got set up and then did a fair amount of pavement pounding for the rest of the day, inlcuding a wee purchase of jeans (from a designer sale store) and tee shirt (from a screen printer on a street corner, who pays $US3,000 a month rent for the privelege!) for moi. Also checked out a shoe store that also had a basement that went on for acres. Matt, sorry buddy, I just didn’t know your size.
After getting sore feet, a full bladder – and slightly frayed tempers, we ended up at a totally cool Mexican place in Chinatown: Barrio Chino. After some fantastic (and healthy) food, 1 sangria, 1 caipirinha, the spiciest habenero margarita I ever imagined possible and a mexican beer I can’t remember the name of, life was feeling pretty good.
(This pic doesn’t do this place justice)
Then the weather lifted and the sun came out as it was going down; magic.
Life is good.
After dinner we headed back to the apartment where I’ve spent the last hour or two constructing the world’s longest blog post, so we’re now about to visit this seductive looking wine and chocolate bar about 5 doors down from our apartment. Posts from now on won’t be this long, but I will endeavour to update reasonably regularly.
Adios amigos! xx
PS feel free to comment or ask questions below.