New York City, 2011

My friend Janette was throwing herself a birthday party and I'd agreed to go when she first announced it. Despite moving the weekend before, I made it down to Astoria on the bus and had a great time. :)

Friday July 8, 2011

I had a bit of an oddessy getting to work by T from my new place. In theory it was easy, take the bus to Lechemere and from there the Green line to work. But Lechemere was closed and I had to take a shuttle bus to North Station. And the first train didn't go all the way and I had to change at Gov't Centre. But I eventually made it and was glad that I'd just packed a fairly light shoulder bag. Got a lot of work done and took off for South Station by T for my 6pm bus. It was a bit easier going from work to Astoria than it was going from home to work, one transfer at Park St and then the bus to Port Authority (with a quick stop at a rural fast food joint where I got a very thick milkshake), and one train out to Astoria. Then I had a bit of a walk to my hotel, the Fairfield Mariott, that turned out to be unnecessary as they had a free shuttle service (that I found out about once I got there). It was raining just a bit, but also very hot so it felt cool and welcome. I got in at around 11pm and just had a shower and crashed.

Saturday July 8, 2011

Gala had rescued me from my inability to remember what exhibit I'd wanted to see in NYC, texting me that the Alexander McQueen exhibit at the Met was on. I had the breakfast buffet at the hotel, included with the room, just catching it before the end at 10am - I had been having problems sleeping at my new place due to a lack of curtains, so sleeping in in a dark room was very welcome. This time I took the shuttle bus to the subway, and was able to navigate the single connection to get near to the Met with no problems. Had a nice walk over toward Central Park and got my ticket. Only to find out that despite there not being a separate fee for the McQueen exhibit, there was a long long wait, 45mins or so according to the sign. I stopped in at the restroom before joining the scrum, they kept trying to make us use all the space in the roped off line section, but then we'd turn a corner and it was back down to a single person wide area. I think they were trying to keep us from taking over too much of the museum floor space. It was close to an hour before I got in the doors of the exhibit proper, museum members could jump the line at will, and it was quite frustrating seeing them waltzing in while I was 3 places back from the front. Luckily I'd left enough time to not be rushed, so I wasn't stressed out. But then I got inside the exhibit and found a huge crush of people. I had to wait to read every sign, and wait for space to see most of the dresses clearly. It was very well done though, with lighting and music adding to the atmosphere. Lots of quotes and press clippings and videos and accessories, and omg the dresses. :) I love the precise tailoring on his more structured pieces, and the combination with lace and flowing fabrics leading to billowing gowns. I want the whole Widows of Culloden line. :) I almost made it to the end before I got overwhelmed, and I had to rush out only glancing at the last room or so. I ended up buying the exhibit book, but wish that it had more shots of each piece to show all sides as well as the details. Lots of the text was verbatim from the exhibit as well.

I had some time before I had to be back in Astoria, so I checked out the posted menus on some restaurants and went into the Lennox Grill for brunch. I was seated near a quintessential older New York lady - she was being demanding as well as flirting with all the waiters. My waffle had fresh blueberries on it, it was delicious. From there I made my way back to the subway and to the hotel to drop stuff off (the McQueen book was heavy). It was a short walk to Janette's place, shorter than to the subway, and I was the first to arrive at around 4pm (it officially started at 3). Hung out with her and Michael as the party filled in, and we ordered Indian food (though I completely forgot my leftovers in her fridge). Gala arrived and Sola as well, so there were familiar faces as well as new ones. At one point most of the party went on a run for supplies (crack dip, more citrus, mixers, alcohol). I got stuff at the grocery store, then split off to hit up a liquor store. Had a nice conversation with the clerk there about Toronto when I picked up a bottle of vodka for one of the other party guests. Then I spotted a bakery across the way and picked up a chocolate bundt cake since we hadn't been able to find a birthday cake at the grocery store. Back to the party and things moved into the backyard as the sun went down. Good times, though a bit too good on one guest's part, he was falling down a bit much. *wry smile* Gala and I walked back to the hotel as she was splitting the room with me that night and I think we crashed around 1am or so.

Sunday July 10, 2011

Packed, had the buffet, came back with coffee for gala, got cleaned up and out to the hotel shuttle. We took it to the subway stop and then hit up the Neptune Diner for food, though we had to wait for Janette and Michael to show up before they would seat us. Nice leisurely breakfast and I got onto the subway at around 1pm for my 3pm bus. Got my early boarding upgrade for $5 and it (along with paying attention) netted me a seat on th express bus leaving a bit earlier. I read most of the way home, finishing two books. I decided to take the longer way around on the way home, spending a bit of time in Davis Sq waiting for the bus that goes out toward my house.

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