A tale to share.
Happy new year, my fellow tomatoes. I thought I'd start 2011 off with some reasons why, despite the craziness, I still love New York.
Here's what I experienced in New York in a little over 20 minutes.
I was meeting friends at their east side apartment, and enjoyed a most breathtaking view of the city from their west facing windows. As the winter sun started to sink, the lights of New York flicked on, and the Empire State Building became ablaze in red and green in all
it's majestic holiday splendor.
Leaving their apartment to head to an appointment on the West Side, I walked up 23rd Street, passing the beautiful little urban park in the Flatiron district and hopped on the subway, traveling to Times Square.
As I walked underground to 8th Avenue, I heard the beautiful sounds of an operatic voice. Right by the 41st Street and 7th Avenue exit, and near the pass way to Port Authority, a couple of opera singers were performing for weary commuters.
People who had been shuffling by, stopped and listened, struck by the exquisite voices of these two singers, performing to their impromptu audience, as if they were on the stage of the Met.
It was part of a program to make opera accessible to everyone.
I listened for a few minutes and then skipped up the steps to greet the frigid air on West 41st street. There I emerged to see the beautiful New York Times building, right next to the comfort food haven, known as Schnippers Quality Kitchens.
If you are in the midtown west area and are looking for some fresh, simple food, check out Schnippers, if nothing else, because the name is so much fun.
Navigating my way up 8th, I passed the sign for Girls, Girls, Girls smack dab next door to the new midtown Shake Shack, with lines literally out the door. So much for new year's resolutions about dieting!
Turning the corner, the brand new sleek and shiny Hotel Intercontinental has totally snazzed up 44th between 8th and 9th. The hotel is in the space where a dingy flophouse and check cashing facility dominated for decades.
Across the street from the Intercontinental is the legendary jazz mecca, Birdland, and up towards 9th, the elegant, yet fun Northern Italian restaurant, Etcetera Etcetera stands, with the owner warmly greeting each and every guest, as he presides over a cool bar scene and lovely
private dining room for very special and unique events.
20 minutes and I saw the world.
Special Note: As I am writing this, I am watching David Letterman, who just showed a photograph of the Empire State Building. The very same view that I was admiring today.
It was a spectacular shot with a twilight sunset, and he said these very words: "New York City my friends. If your town doesn't look like that..it just ain't happening..."
Well said, Dave. Well said.