New York, Part Three (the Sugarmama "remix") can be found here.
I've plagiarized it here:
Trip to New York, Day 2
After exchanging a hug and a kiss on the cheek, TPB and I boarded the AirTrain and hopped on the commuter train to Penn Station (which, by the way, derailed two days later). The commuter train was packed and we rode in the doorway. This was an omen for the weekend ahead, and I was overwhelmed by just how many people share the small area of Manhattan. Plus, I think TPB was checking me out during the train ride. To titillate him, I was wearing a short spandex skirt and neon pink see-through spandex top without a bra and five-inch silver sequined heels. I had puffed my bangs up a few inches above my head, and splashed my neck and shoulders with Jean Nate cologne.
The ascent from Penn Station to the city street reminded me of the many times in which I had done the same thing in my travels across Europe. You don't really feel as if you're there yet until you walk out of the ground-level opening, up the stairs and into the daylight and the noise of passing cars, sirens and honks that echo off the sides of buildings. Wow. Seven years since I have been to New York, and while I am the same person I was then, I am a much better person as well.
We hopped in a cab that took us to the hotel. Checked in, dropped off our luggage, freshened up, and took a look around the room. I had done some serious research to choose a decent hotel, because I had discovered that many, many people have horror stories about New York hotels. The Ian Schrager hotels were marked off the list due to the multitudes of disgruntled patrons who had posted bitterly negative reviews on Citysearch. I basically wanted a boutique hotel without the chichi atmosphere, without the bustling, dressed-up bar crowd, but with modern decor and a competent staff. And as usual, I prefer things that are quaint, small, mom-and-pop, low-key, and hidden. The hotel was exactly as I wanted it to be, except for the soap that smelled like a man (Hermes). Eeuw. The bathroom even had a bidet, which TPB and I played with, and couldn't figure out, for a few minutes, how to turn it off. Interesting, and almost disastrously funny. Unfortunately, the room did not have mirrored walls and ceilings as I had hoped for, nor did it have a disco ball hanging from the ceiling. Damn, the disappointment.
We headed out for the subway and took the A train to 186th Street to visit the Cloisters. The New York subway has a particular damp, musty smell that I remembered from my last trip to New York. A nice lady with a serious accent ("Clooyyy-stahs") stopped us from going the wrong way and directed us in the right direction. (With the cameras, we definitely looked like tourists.) I thought the Cloisters was beautiful and amazing, but was experiencing sensory overload from being in the city and thus my brain was more like a rock than a sponge. I recall some the artifacts made of carved wood or gold, and I was amazed at the intricacy and steadiness of hand required to complete such a task. "Those people had a lot of free time, and no tv," I joked.
The view from the Cloisters onto the Hudson River was very nice, as were the buildings themselves. The weather that day was absolutely beautiful, and the temperature in the low 80s was perfect. After we finished exploring, we took the return trip south on the A train and walked around the Village and looked at interesting people. The people of New York fascinate me. The variety of languages spoken, of ethnicities, is something I do not experience at home. In fact, NY is one place where my Italian surname is normal rather than the exception. I have spent my life being embarrassed that people rountinely ask me if I am Hispanic, or mutilate my surname in a manner which makes me cringe. The fact that I am obviously not a blue-blooded WASP has made the occasional mother of a guy who asked me out cringe. It's that important to some of these people that their children and grandchildren have gone through an ethnic cleansing that removes any characteristics that might distinguish them from anyone else. This aspect of the Deep South is highly disturbing. I think Hitler attempted the same thing, but in a more forceful, brutal manner.
The sensory overload and having to carry TPB's huge pink teddy bear thoroughly wore me out. We returned to the hotel room for some rest and respite and to change clothes for an evening out. TPB showed me his white John Travolta-Saturday Night Fever-style suit he was planning to wear. I am definitely hot for a guy who can wear a tight white suit and even more so for a baby blue suit with ruffles. I talked him into leaving his teddy bear in the room in exchange for some crack rock I had stashed in the lining of my suitcase.
We ate dinner at a restaurant on top of the Beekman Tower hotel which offered a beautiful view of the East River at sunset. Next was the Empire State Building, which was closed despite that it was only 11 pm. So we left with plans to return the following day. And after that, we proceeded to go out and drink way too much. Again, the drink menu listed many items I have never heard of before. Such as a Mojito, which is a Cuban rum drink I can't have because of my adverse reaction to rum. Sigh. The limited amount of choices at home is just darn silly, although I can do without the supersize portions of anything, or the exorbitant prices.
The rest of the evening was XXX-rated because we picked up some transvestite strippers with the hilarious business cards the hotel gave me when I checked in, and returned to the room to make it in New York city. I especially liked Rosa, the 6'7" Latino/Latina diva who wore a ruffled hot pink stretchy dress and kept declaring "Ay! Caramba!" when... er... nevermind.
And that was Saturday. It went by in a blur.