New York, 1995

The second time I met Siobhan, I jumped in her car and we took off for a 12 hour road trip to Long Island. We were going to attend EdVamp's Labour Day pool party. Turns out that not very many others made it, as seen here: Talin (Shadowhawk), EdVamp, Dan (Ph0ebus), Siobhan, and I took the picture.

The trip started relatively early, with Siobhan picking me up and us jumping on the highway. We drove. Then we drove some more. We crossed the border at Lewiston/Queenston with no problems (I was frankly amazed, as I had just dyed my hair green and Siobhan's was purple). We drove some more. We stopped for a bathroom break on route 90 and the old guy behind the counter where we were looking at maps and such suggested that we could avoid the tolls on 90 if we jogged down south from Rochester and took 17 across. So, being the trusting souls we were, we did. It was a nice drive, actually, until we stopped for lunch. In a tiny little town that I don't remember the name of. The streets were deserted and we couldn't find anyplace to get fast food. We ended up parking next to a car that had two stuffed bulldogs in the back window, one green, one purple.

My friend Yohaun has almost got me convinced that this is the same small western NY town where he had a very surreal experience himself. My theory is that there are tons of these towns scattered about and everyone will end up in one at some point.

So, we kept driving. 12 or so hours after leaving home, we started to get excited since we were seeing the milage to NYC drop down from 400 to less than 50 miles. We turned south to follow the Hudson River and I remember going under a very nice stone overpass, covered in green vines and creepers. We hit NYC proper and dragged out the directions to EdVamp's place on Long Island.

It really is a long island, so we drove and drove and drove. I found out here that most US states number their exists consecutively, as opposed to in Canada where we number them according to how many kilometres they are from the start of the highway. This scheme allows you to judge how far away you are from a given exit by simple addition or subtraction. But not so in New York. Exit 35 or so was at least 50 miles further down the island. So we drove. And finally found it!

EdVamp put us up in a spare bedroom, and we'd brought our green and purple towels to put over the pillows, since we're considerate that way. I'm doing this from memory now, so I'm not sure if the party was that night or the next. I think it was the next, since I remember Ed taking Siobhan and I out shopping in the morning. Whichever, Talin and Dan arrived at some point, and we swam and then we went out to a concert being played by Bile. They took our pictures as we came in, some sort of security system that was new to me. It was late, and I was tired, so I curled up in my cape while waiting for the concert to begin. We moved into the main area and I ended up sitting next to one of the cages. I had to be very rude to some creep who kept trying to touch me. Eventually the band exploded onto stage and I seem to recall enjoying the music quite a bit. I remember dancing near a partition at some point, since I kept getting crowded into it.

At some absurd hour like 4am we headed back to Ed's to sleep. We had the great idea (heh) at that point that we'd leave at around noon the next day, stop off in New York City proper for a bit and then drive through the night. So, woke up, packed up the car again, and drove back down the island. Managed to get into Manhatten and got honked through a red light that everyone behind us decided was broken so we'd better go, and they didn't care we were poor confused Canadians. We found Slutboy's place and watched him torment his psycho kitty with a laser pointer for a while, as he was a saint and printed out Ph0ebus's guide to Gotham City shopping for us. Yes I lost my copy somewhere, but newly armed with addresses and suggestions, we headed out on foot. We found St. Mark's Square, and various and sundry gothy shops. I got a leather purse cheap, and I think some stockings. Walked back to Kit's and put everything valuable that we'd taken out of the car back in, and headed back for the Great White North.

We took 17 back again, driving at night under a clear star studded sky. The mist was lying in the valleys, we had the Sisters cranked way up, and were breezing along with out a care in the world.

Siobhan did most of the driving, she's a goddess that way, but it caught up to her as we were nearing Buffalo. She'd missed the turn as I was dozing off. Luckily I woke up just as we were about to pass the final cut off point to turn north to cross the border. We ended up heading north on a tiny little road, but it got us where we needed to go, and we rolled back into Toronto as the sun was peeking up.

I had to be at school first thing in the morning, so I jumped out after saying the farewell, grabbed a shower and started my first day of grad school. Luckily, it was just orientation and I was able to sleep through some of it on the couch in the lab I'd worked in that summer.

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