Thursday, June 9, 2011

NYC Baby, Part III

Saturday, April 28th, 2011
This day, we started out by once again grabbing a bite of breakfast from the deli on the corner.  =-)
Then we met with a "native New Yorker" from an organization called
The Big Apple Greeters

If you've never heard of them, and you're planning on going to NYC (or you  live there!), then you really should check this out!
The Big Apple Greeters is a non-profit organization that uses volunteers who live in New York, and have them "escort" you around the city for a few hours.  They *used* to provide you with subway "Metro Cards"  for the day, but they really don't make enough money to do that anymore, but, really, you can afford one for yourself.  It's a *great* way to get around the city quickly.  =-)

Anyway, we told our native Greeter, Richard, that we wanted to go see China Town, and he wanted us to walk the Brooklyn Bridge, so we hopped on the subway and headed out.  Then we walked and walked and walked some more.  But Richard was full of knowledge about New York's history and other stuff.  He was very friendly and agreeable.  It was a good time while we wound our way to the Brooklyn Bridge, and we walked from Brooklyn back into Manhattan.  (We stayed in Manhattan the entire time, except this tiny little foray into Brooklyn to get to the start of the bridge.)

Suzanne, Kitty and me at the start of the Brooklyn Bridge
{HOW could i not think about sunscreen YET AGAIN?!?!}

They were working on the bridge, so we didn't really get a good picture of
The Statue of Liberty.

Then Richard, our Big Apple Greeter, showed us the way to China Town.

I forget what street this was, but here's
China Town!  =-)
See the signs in Chinese?
It was awesome.
It was slower and quieter than the other parts of Manhattan where we'd been.
We bought some *awesome* cherries from a vendor.
But we didn't think to take any pics of the roasted pigs and ducks layed out.

This was a nice Chinese-style building...
If you look closely, you'll see there's a Starbucks "even in China Town".

 And this is the closest we got to The Statue of Liberty...
The irony is... I think this was a Man!
Everybody has a gimmick to make money.

After walking and walking and walking alllllll day (did i mention we walked a lot?), we went dragging back to our apartment.
We got showers and stuff.
And my sister took pictures of my bruises from the Trapeze School because they just kept getting darker and darker.

My bruised legs the next day from
Trapeze School

This leg was way worse than the other one 

I wish I had pictures of it each day as it got worse and worse.
It's *finally* getting better now... after almost TWO weeks!

My arm got hurt too, as i was flipping off of the net the first time. 

Here are pictures of our apartment.
We stayed on 9th Ave between 48th & 49th Streets.
It was awesome!
And way cheaper than a hotel! 

Here's the dining room.
Notice the 20 year old on the computer.
She was posting pics to FaceBook. 

Here's the dining room/living room
and the front door is to the left.
The "couch" is really a futon, and that's where Suzanne slept.
This was a vacation-rental-by-owner type of place.

Here's the bedroom.  One double and one single bed.

We went to Dangerfield's (as in "Rodney")
for the comedy show.
It was pretty good.  Kitty really enjoyed it.  Yay!

The other days, we walked a lot (big surprise, i know), and we went shopping on Canal Street, and we went to the Museum of Sex.  Kitty *really* enjoyed that!  She took tons of pictures in there!  I may post some of those pictures if *anybody* requests 'em.  =-)

Okay!  That's it for now!  It was a GREAT vacation (Thank you Suzi!!!)!  If you have any questions about where we stayed or anything, just comment me  and i'll do my best to answer you.  =-)

Take  Care!!!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Our Second Day in NYC

So on our second day, we got up, grabbed breakfast from the deli on the corner, and walked over to 353 West St, on the Pier 40 roof at Hudson River Park.
What, pray tell, is there, you ask?
I'll tell you.
But... you won't believe me.  =-)

We went to Trapeze School New York!

...don't ask me why.

My sister wanted to go, and since Kitty had seen it on Sex and the City, she was game.  She thought it would be "fun".

It scared the Bejeebees out of me!


I've done lots of things. 
I've been in the Air Force, so that means i've also been to Basic Training for the military (6 weeks in San Antonio Texas in July/August!). 
I've been to  Survival School in Washington State in October/November, which included POW Training Camp, among other things. 
I've been to Water Survival School at Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina. 
I've taught Chemical Warfare to flight crews in the Air Force.
Hell, i grew up the youngest of four children, so you know my 2 older brothers picked on me and tricked me and did their best to scare the crap out of me.
I was in a serious wreck in a little tiny Toyota versus an 18-wheeler on my wedding day, and the seasoned State Trooper said he had NO idea how the two of us walked out of our tiny little car!

I've been seriously scared before, trust me.

But Trapeze School was the most scared i've ever been.  Seriously!

But, through the magic of the Internet, i'm going to share my experience with you.  =-)
I hope you enjoy it...

And i hope you don't feel like throwing up...      
Like *I* felt during the entire experience!

It looked benign enough, didn't it?

Me and Kitty, before i really knew what i was in for...
We had already been "suited up" with our harnesses (for safety)

This picture is to give you a small idea of how FREAKIN HIGH that platform really is!

Here's Kitty, practicing before going up the ladder
(the ladder that went on forever!)

Here's Kitty getting ready to "jump"

Now she describes this as "Wheee!"
She says she was scared, but not as scared as she thought she would be.  =-)

As i stood on the "ground" below and looked up at her,
my youngest daughter,
waaay up there on the platform,
i could only think...

"Oh CRAP!!!  Now that she's up there, there is no way i can *not* go up."

So i forced myself up that ladder.

Trust me, once i got to the place where the ladder is "doubled", i had to keep talking to myself:   "Breathe."  "Just breathe."  "I'm not gonna die today."  "Just breathe!"

I kept telling myself that i had no *logical* reason to be scared.
I was hooked up to a safety rig at all times. 
I *knew* i wasn't really gonna fall or anything.

But logic and my mind were NOT friends that day!

But Kitty had already gone, so i HAD to do this.
I knew that i would never get over
being disappointed in myself
if i didn't give this my best try.

So i forced myself to continue up that ladder.
And i had to also continue telling myself to BREATHE.

That's Marina up on the platform.  She works there, and she was up there to help us.  But she is smaller than my daughter!  She's almost as petite as my oldest daughter, Bunny!   

Here Marina was trying to calm my fears a bit, albeit unsuccessfully.

Marina said, "Put your toes over the edge, and just lean your hips forward.  I've got you."
And i was thinking,
"You've got me?!  Are you kidding?! 
You're just a tiny little thing! How do you think you've got me?!"

And i was STILL reminding myself to BREATHE!

I grabbed the bar.  "Shit! It's heavy!"
I don't know why, but i didn't expect it to be so heavy.
(You'll notice i *still* wasn't ready to lean my hips forward... yet.)

My sister was able to take so many pictures because i couldn't just
climb up there and jump.
Marina said "Ready?" and i said
"Hold on!  Let me breathe."

But i did jump.  =-)

Don't ask me if i breathed, though.
I  have NO IDEA!

I swung up to the other side, and Roger (the man on the ground with the safety  rope) told me to put my legs up.
No problem.

But then Roger said, "Let go"

and i just

I have no idea why i couldn't let go...

But i had no problem getting my legs back down, and then letting go and landing down on the net.

But i certainly was shaking!

And i felt like crying.

And puking!

But i made it over to the edge of the net...

...and flipped down.

But i *still* felt like crying
...and puking!

Here i am with my sister Suzanne.
She couldn't believe how much i was shaking
inside AND out!

She's showing her hand because we had to "chalk up" before climbing up the ladder.

Here i was, trying not to cry and puke,
and Suzanne is as happy as a clam!

I wish i had thought to put on sunscreen
before we left the apartment that morning!
I got *burned*!

I won't bore you with more pictures of the same things, but i went up that ladder again, telling myself to breathe, and reminding myself that i wasn't gonna die from this, and yet, once again, i couldn't let go of the bar when my legs were up over it.
I think i was afraid that my legs wouldn't hold me up there.
I honestly don't know why i "couldn't" do it.

And i went up there AGAIN
and i couldn't release my hands AGAIN.

After everybody had taken three turns, Eric (the tall guy in the red shirt above with Kitty practicing) went up on the other swing to "catch" us.

And i knew i just HAD to do the catch!
I don't know *why*, but i just HAD TO!

So when i went up that ladder a fourth time
(still having to remind myself to breathe)
(still having to talk myself out of quitting
when i reached the half-way place on the ladder)
(still telling myself that i wasn't gonna die doing this)

I stood on that platform,
put my legs  up over the bar,


But Eric wanted me to do it
before he would try to catch me

I went up the ladder
(still wanting to cry and puke and needing to remind myself to BREATHE!)...
I stood on the platform...
I took a deep breath...
I jumped...
I put my legs up over the bar...
I actually let go of the bar...


It's not a good picture, but it's the only one i have! 
I actually released my legs from the bar and straightened  up my body. 
The camera caught me between those two stages, sort of.

But even after alllllll that

i STILL felt like i needed a good cry
and to puke!

But before you begin to think it was all Fun & Games

And today, over a week later, it looks even WORSE!
I had no idea at the time, but my legs are all bruised up on the back.
My right is much worse than my left.
(Apparently, along with being right-handed,
i'm also right-legged and right-footed.)

And i hurt my right elbow the first time i was flipping off the net...

But i didn't hold it against anybody!  =-)

(Here's Kitty, Eric & me)

And here's Kitty, Roger, Me and Suzanne.
Notice she's STILL tickled with this whole experience.

And that was my experience at the Trapeze School New York.

I hope you enjoyed it...
and didn't feel like crying...
or puking!

I'll tell you more about my trip later (hopefully tomorrow!).


Saturday, June 4, 2011

I Am So Sorry!

I can hardly believe it's been almost TWO MONTHS since i last posted!  {No wonder i've lost  followers...  Note to self:  Either do it or don't, but don't leave people hanging!}
I've been busy, just like everybody else.  Plus i was trying to spend less time on the 'puter because it's waaay too easy for me to waste time on the Interwebs.  {How 'bout you?}
But i've been to NYC, and i wanted to share it with you!
So without further babbling, here's my tale.  =-)

When my girls started high school, my older sister Suzanne told them that if they graduated with "good enough" grades, then  she'd take them anywhere in the continental United States that they wanted to go.  My oldest graduated in 2008, and she chose New York City.  I tagged along.  =-)  It was a very good trip.  We all had a wonderful time.  My sister has been to NYC at least 6 times, so she organized everything, and she feels pretty comfortable there.

My youngest, Kitty, graduated in 2010, but she wasn't really sure where she wanted to go, and then she felt like it wasn't "the right time" to go anywhere, so we put it off.  Then, this late Winter/early Spring, Kitty told Suzanne that she was ready, and that she also wanted to go to NYC.

Suzanne booked an apartment in Manhattan for us.  It was GREAT!  Much bigger than the apartment we had 3 years ago, and WAY bigger and less expensive than the hotel that my sister booked 4 years ago for our little sister.  =-)  (If you want info about it, just message me or comment & i'll tell you.)

Anyway, here's a pic of Kitty & me on the plane.  {She colored her hair about a month ago to this fiery red and i L-O-V-E it!!!}

Here's "the view" when coming into the front door of "our" apartment.  It's on 9th between 48th and 49th (Manhattan).
Suzanne slept here.

This is as soon as you "round the corner" after coming in the front door.   It's a living room/dining room/kitchen combination.

The bathroom (which is big for NYC, let me tell ya!)
You can't see it, but the sink is to the left in there.  =-)

The bedroom, with a single and a double.
Oh! AND a closet!  And i don't mean a teeny tiny closet, either.  =-)

Standing beside the table, here's the kitchen area.  I've never seen such a tiny little dishwasher!  =-)

After we got settled in, we went for a stroll.  We were just a few blocks from Times Square, so that's where we headed, after getting a bite for lunch at the deli on the corner, 7 Brothers Deli.  Sorry, but we never got a picture of it...

So here are some random shots of Times Square:

The people on the right are waiting in the TKTS line (for shows)

And here is a pic that Kitty took of the Naked Cowboy (who wasn't really naked, thank goodness! I didn't want to see as much of him as i saw, much less even more of him!  He kinda freaked me out, for some reason.  creee-py)

A subway stop

Me and "The Fiery Redhead" in Times Square  

Suzanne & Kittty, still in Times Square

Kitty at night (but NOT in the dark!) in Times Square

And that was about it for our first (partial) day in NYC.  We walked and  walked and walked.  Oh!  And then we stopped and saw a show.  We went to Phantom of the Opera.  Kitty and Suzanne really enjoyed it.  I liked the costumes and the sets.  =-)

I'll be back (hopefully tomorrow) with more from our trip.  We left on May 26th and returned on the 30th.  It was a GREAT vacation!