Archive for September, 2007|Monthly archive page

Intermission – OH bound until Thanksgiving

stained glass

We’ll be traveling between Columbus and Findlay OH until Thanksgiving – helping Chris’ parents pack and move, visiting with my sons at OSU and other friends in Columbus, having the bikes and RV serviced, and getting some medical/dental checkups out of the way.  For Thanksgiving we’ll be driving down (with Dominic and Matt) to Chattanooga and then on to Birmingham to put them on a plane to come back.  From Birmingham we’ll start the next leg of our journey.

 So … until Thanksgiving – stay healthy and happy!

Beverly & Chris

p.s. The photo above is one of three matching stained glass windows in the music room of their current house.

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Fashion Week in New York City

dog

Purely by chance we visited New York City at the beginning of Fashion Week – the week where designers present their new designs to the fashion industry.  As usual, this blog will feature photos of things that caught my eye during our stay and I’ll summarize the things we did while we were there.  The photo above is a well-dressed dog (and his/her owner) we passed on the sidewalk purely by chance – I ran back and snapped the photo as they walked on.

We parked the RV at a KOA campground in New York State near the Hudson River – a taxi ride away from a commuter rail station where the train went directly into Grand Central Station.  The KOA was relatively empty when we arrived and we set up on a fully serviced site and paid full price only for the first and last night (when we were staying in the RV) – the rest of the time we only paid $5/night, which was quite a deal!  We felt that the RV was much safer there than parked at an airport parking lot.  The campground management seemed to be Canadian-friendly, as they were flying a Canadian flag near the KOA flag (and a larger American flag out front) – plus they had the same distance-and-direction post we had seen in Newfoundland near St. John’s.

The first two nights we stayed within the Theater District in the Hotel Mela – well reviewed, very small but clean rooms and a convenient easy walk to Times Square and the theaters.  Our only negative (toward the associated restaurant) was that one morning we ordered room service for breakfast and coffee, never got it, and couldn’t reach room service on the phone.  Yes, there was a Starbucks on almost every block and we learned to just get up and go get coffee, but – that’s not the point.

We saw four Broadway shows while we were in town.   Wicked (history of the Wicked Witch of the West from birth through her melting at the hands of Dorothy) and Phantom of the Opera (music by Andrew Lloyd Webber) were older, established musicals we were familiar with and enjoyed.  Curtains (David Hyde Pierce and Debra Monk) and Spring Awakening (rock musical about adolescence w/music by Duncan Sheik) were newer musicals we also enjoyed.

We toured the Museum of Modern Art (current exhibit Richard Serra’s sculpture – primarily iron plates) and the Museum of Arts and Design – and had a docent-guided tour of an exhibit on current artists’ interpretation and translation of Chinese furniture design.

We walked a lot – Fifth Avenue, Central Park (one corner), Lincoln Center, Broadway, Times Square, Greenwich Village, … we rode the subway and only took a cab once to save our legs and get to a pre-theater dinner reservation on time.  We poked our heads into Trump Tower and the Shops at Columbus Square.  We were pursued by scent and makeup sales clerks through the cosmetics section of Saks Fifth Avenue and we went up the elevator to the 8th floor – Designer Women’s Shoes.  After checking out beautiful shoes and boots that were at least $800 a pair and clashed rudely with our dusty camping tennies, we left.  We walked through the street fair when they closed off several blocks of Broadway on Saturday.

We spent time in Bryant Park (where tents were set up for the Fashion Shows) and did lots of people watching there (woman waiting for her date, concession worker, crowds hoping for a glimpse of “someone famous”).  When we walked on Fifth Avenue we saw crowds watching a stage – it was the taping of rock band performances for “Fashion Rocks” – shown on CBS during Fashion Week.   CBS had arranged for two city tourbuses to be filled with people on top and parked near the stage so they could be filmed enjoying the show – they had giveaways for the folks who were participating.  We first stood and gawked and then (with others) asked “What are we watching/waiting for?”.  That seemed to be a common occurence in New York!

It was also the week for the US Open.  We saw Lexus having a “Virtual Open”, letting people watch the US Open from Manhattan on a huge screen from bleachers and letting people compete for prizes using a WII game player.  

We visited my niece Allison and had lunch with her at her workplace (Google).  She has lived in DC, Boston, and New York for her college years and young adulthood and has traveled all over the world – she’s a very fun person to talk with.  The last three days of our visit we stayed in her apartment in the East Village.  It is a very different area than mid-town, full of young college-age and adult folks, funky restaurants, bars, …  We went to a local indie film theater to see The King of Kong (a documentary about competitors for high Donkey Kong video game scores) on Allison’s recommendation.  Now we’re cool because it’s not showing anywhere else in the US except NYC and SF.  It’s also a very good movie.

As usual we ate well – although twice we just grabbed a sandwich at Starbucks and twice we grabbed something fast and healthy at “Pax” – where they’ll make you a tossed salad, omelet, burrito, or pizza using fresh ingredients of your choice, as you wait.  We ate out only near Times Square – at Ruby Foo’s (a pan-Asian Sushi/Dim Sum restaurant that Allison had taken my sisters and I to before on a trip there) – great sushi.  We ate at Joe Allen (delicious veggie stew and tilapia, and well-reviewed according to yelp).  And we made it to the Brooklyn Diner and had a great Margherita Pizza.

Cape Cod Seashore and P-Town, MA

Beach Bayside

 We’ve enjoyed a beautiful Labor Day weekend near the tip of Cape Cod, in a campground near Provincetown, Massachusetts.  Most of Provincetown’s land area is within the Cape Cod National Seashore.  Beautiful beaches, several of which allow cars/campers to park there during the day.  We saw a seal (or walrus) swimming just offshore as we ate lunch on the beach one day.  There are about 8 miles of paved bike trails (up and down sand dunes and through the woods – good exercise).

And then there’s Provincetown.  It’s known as an artistic beach resort community and as a progressively tolerant place to visit and live.  It has fabulous restaurants.  There are about 3,700 year-round residents and “lots of visitors during the summer” – much like Bar Harbor – but these visitors tend to like to dress in costumes and parade down the middle of the street.

There are several really interesting houses and gardens here as well – one particularly interesting one had a stone wall that had incorporated geodes, crystal balls, and pieces of granite.  The yard was completely decorated with metal sculptures, walkways, and plants.  They had added gargoyles to the top of the house.