01 New York


So, we are leaving NYC. Our first stop of the long trip is almost over. We’ve been the last couple of days just enjoying the city, without any hurry: just visiting again the neighbourhoods we liked most.

On Friday we went to East Village again and we went to midtown to have lunch in one of the famous places we had left: Gray’s Papaya. Cheap and nice food!

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We also did some shopping and I could finally substitute my old Converse by these new ones. 30 dollars. Less than 25 euros!!!

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Oh dear New York! I’m gonna miss you so much!! It has been incredible living here for two weeks. I could stay here forever without any doubt. With mice, the horrible public transportation and everything. This city is the best place ever.

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Now we head to Los Angeles and San Francisco. I’m not sure if we’ll be able to connect to internet everyday, so just keep and eye on us. Next week we’ll be in Cook Islands. Definitely we won’t be connected there. The trip is going on. And I love it.

After falling in love with the neighbourhood last week, yesterday we wanted to go back to Williamsburg, the place where we both would love to live.

As I already said, Williamsburg is packed with second-hand shops, cozy places to eat or drink, the most hipster people and the best atmosphere one can imagine. But you can also find some freaks there. For example: an astronaut.

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Williamsburg Astronaut

We also visited the BEST vintage and second-hand shop ever: Beacon’s Closet. I couldn’t help to buy a skirt and a dress there. So amazing! So cheap! Then we had lunch with my friend Elena, currently living there, in a really beautiful place called Five Leaves. The best food listening to Lou Reed. unbelievable.

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Pancakes

As dusk started, we headed to the Brooklyn Bridge to walk by. It’s a shame that half of it was under repair and covered, but anyway we could see the incredible Manhattan Skyline from there.

Then we went have a drink, and advised by my friends Eneida and Miriam, we visited The Beauty Bar near Union Square. A really nice and beautiful place with the best music where you can get a cocktail and a manicure for 10 $. And of course, we did it:

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So, that was our day. Only two days more and then we will leave to sunny and warm California!

The days are running so fast! At the end of the week we’ll leave NYC. Oh my God! When will I come back??

Yesterday we went to visit Soho, Noho and Nolita, probably the most hipster neighbourhoods. Filled with expensive but incredible cool shops where I will never be able to buy anything.

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Me. In NY.

As it was time to eat, we went to Chinatown again (definitely our favourite district! hahaha! we are here one out of every two days). We went to eat to Sweet Spring, a restaurant famous for its appearance in my beloved show “Flight of the Concords”. I will just say: 5 dumplings – 1’50 $ (so, more or less 1 euro!!!)

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Sweet Spring

Then a bit more walking through the streets and we arrived to the paradise of all photographers: Levi’s Workshop. A free public space with studios, sets, free cameras for rental (yes, FREE!) and some dozens of employees that will help you or teach you at whatever you need.

 

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Rental Camera's at Levi's Workshop

And then: loop. Bucle. Infinite loop. We had been all day walking and thinking “how the fuck is Broadway street always around the corner?”, and we found out why: NYC has not only 1 but 2 f*cking Broadway streets!! Broadway and Broadway West. And also 2 f*cking Spring Street Metro stations. What the f*ck?? 2 streets with the same name and located next to each other and 2 metro stations with the same name in the same street but some blocks away one from the other. This is just a loop. No matter what we do, we will always be at some Broadway street near to some Spring Street Metro station.

Our morning started the worse way possible: we found a mouse in our room. And worst of all: Ina can’t help them at all, so I had to pretend to be calm while I was looking in every single shoe in our floor. Me. Pretending to be calm. A mouse. I think I had some flashbacks from when I was living in Holland, where mice are normal in houses…

After that, we didn’t have enough of cheese-related things, so we thought it was a good idea to try another cheesecake. Let me tell you that today I tried the best NYC cheesecake EVER. And not only the cheesecake, we also tried the famous Red Velvet cupcakes in their tiniest version.

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Red Velvet cupcakes

We ate them in a really small, woody and cozy bakery called Two Little Red Hens. Beautiful, cheap and delicious. What else could we want?

Then, as it was raining, we went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. One of the biggest museums I have ever seen. And believe me, I have seen a lot! A huge egyptian collection, a huge roman and greek collection, a huge everything-you-want-or-need collection. I saw more Warhols here than in MoMA!

 

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me at MET

After some hours there (believe me, we didn’t even see a third part of the museum, we were nearly running from room to room so we could see more!), we crossed Central Park to go to the American Museum of Natural History. And I loved it. The animal scene recreations, the whale, the dinosaurs, the bones, sand, planets, stars… Everything carefully explained in a quite scary but really interesting museum.

 

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American Museum of Natural History

Obviously, when we left we were starving. It had been 6 hours since the cheesecake! So we had to eat like americans. And the best way to do it was going to Jackson Hole, home of the 7 oz burger (200 fucking grams!). Just look at it in comparison to my fingers. Yes, a 6cm high burger.

 

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Jackson Hole burger

As we say everyday: in United States everything is the same as in Europe but bigger: burgers, museums, shampoos, cars, clothing.

I think after some hours I’m still trying to digest that amount of meat.

Tomorrow, more.

One of the things that makes New York so special is the mixture of different cultures, the amount of different neighbourhoods that make you feel like in another country. Yesterday, we had a theme day about that. In the morning we went to Queens to visit its chinese and indian districts. Queens’ Chinatown is just awesome, I guess like being in China: people speak just a little english, most signs are just in chinese and you feel like you are not in an american city, with people behaving totally different.

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Queens' Chinatown

We found so many cheap and nice restaurants! And the grocery’s were just amazing: with all kinds of jelly fish and frogs. We spend hours just taking pictures of their food. Of course we couldn’t resist it, and we ate some of the most delicious dumplings ever. Here you can see the woman who was doing them (isn’t she sweet?) :

 

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Dumpling maker

Then we went to Little India, also in Queens. There we had a really spicy lunch. In Little India we could also see different Indian shops, grocery’s, like being in India for an hour.

After visiting India and Chine we though it was time for some western civilization, so we went to the MoMA PS1. Uhm. Uhm. I’m thinking how to describe it. And the only thing that comes to my mind is: WTF? Are you serious about that?

 

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MoMA PS1

I will just try to forget that museum. Or at least help people not to lose their time with it. Or do it. Well, we had some fun there laughing. Maybe we were laughing at the art itself. But we were laughing.

I prefer keeping in mind the awesome neighbourhood we saw at night: East Village. Yes, obvious, I had to like it, but, oh my God! So beautiful, with so many cozy bars, awesome music! I have my heart between Willyburg and East Village so far. Let’s see what else NYC has for me.

What I saw this morning was unbelievable, incredible, better than expected, amazing. And unfortunately I couldn’t take any pictures. Guys, we saw the light. God clearly sent us to the Greater Refuge Temple so we could see a proper gospel worship. It was just amazing. The atmosphere, the woman’s clothing, the people screaming, singing, dancing and crying. It was like being in a movie, better!

After that we talked about the whole church thing. We realized that Gospel Church is much better than our boring Christian one: they sing, laugh, scream, put passion in everything they do, we just try to be quiet instead.

As we were in Harlem, we went for a walk, saw the famous Apollo Theater and had a brunch in a cool place called Melby’s drinking Mimosa and Bloody Mary’s.

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Melby's in Harlem

After that we went for a walk to see the upper Central Park and Upper West Side. We went down like fifty streets. I still can’t believe how huge NYC is.

And to finish our day we decided that we deserved a present, and it was visiting Eileen’s Special Cheesecake Shop.

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Eileen's Special Cheesecake

Believe me, it tastes much better than it looks (and I know how delicious it looks!). It’s just a little piece of heaven. Soft, not too dense, with a lot of taste of cheese, smooth. Well, we heard God in the morning and we tasted heaven in the afternoon. We definitely had a religious experience today.

Here I am again. Seriously, once I am in New Zealand or Cook Islands I will write posts less frequently, but New York is so amazing that I need to write every day what I’ve done so I can remember it forever. My mother was so right went she told me that I would love this city. How could I not love it?

This morning we went to the Hell’s Kitchen flea market. An incredible market where you could find almost everything: vintage hats, sunglasses, old cameras, vinyls, vintage jewelery, old furniture… well, like every flea market. I would have bought thousands of things, but I’m not going back home in a year, so I couldn’t carry them. Anyway, if you ever have the chance to, just go to this flea market and dive underneath its weird and disorganized objects, you can truly find treasures.

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Old cameras

After that we went to the Rockefeller center to visit the Top of the Rock. Best views ever. Forget about visiting the Empire State, from the Top of the Rock you can actually see the Empire State! Incredible. Indescribable. We arrived before dusk so we could catch all kinds of lights. And well, you can’t imagine how many pictures I have of exactly the same view! As Ina said: New York is truly a photogenic city. Don’t you think?

 

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Skyline

We’ve realized that the shopping season has already started in New York City. After the Top of the Rock, all the area was packed with people shopping. I don’t want to imagine Christmas here! Well, I won’t lie, New York has to be amazing in Christmas. And always!

By the way, I know nobody reads this, everyone just wants pictures (got ya! hahaha), but hey, I bought an awesome Darth Vader by Lego key holder!

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