I just returned from New York City. Two days, business trip. It's amazing -- sometimes that city can be completely annoying and sometimes it's fabulous. This trip? Fabulous, absolutely. I had a ball, despite actually getting some productive business done.
There was just something about New York this week. Not sure what it was. It was unseasonably cold out, but the people of the city were unseasonably warm and friendly, and that so added to the enjoyment of the city.
I spent two days and a night there. Arrived at the office on Tuesday around noon -- 5th Ave address, next to the original Saks, across the street from Rockefeller Center -- could the location be any sweeter? Answer: No.
I met colleagues, worked all afternoon, broke for a coffee around 4pm and headed over to the corner Starbucks which was brimming over with other busy worker bees also taking a coffee break. A swirling mass of black wool coated New Yorkers queuing up for coffee and pastries, no doubt being repeated at every Starbucks in Manhattan at the very same moment.
After work, we walked to a lovely Italian restaurant somewhere near 3rd Ave & 50th. Belissimo! The later it got, the more the locals dropped in, so we knew it was a find.
After dinner, I took a cab back to my hotel at Broadway and W 44th, where I ascended 49 floors to look out at Gotham glistening below me. It was a sight, a feeling, a moment to be caressed, to be standing there above it all, just gazing at it, like I owned it; it was mine. At least for the night, from the 49th floor, it was. Amazing, amazing, amazing.
Next morning, I got up and walked to work, like a New Yorker. At lunch, we walked through the frigid weather to one of a zillion fabulous neighborhood deli's and had Japanese Udon soup. Delicious. And the best part? I finished work early, my boss caught an early flight, and I was left to my own devices to explore the City until 9pm, when my flight took off.
Not one to toss away an opportunity like that, I quickly pranced over to Park Ave & 50th and checked my luggage with the bell captain at the Waldorf Astoria so I could stalk the shops of Manhattan properly. Fifth, Park, Madison...I made a beeline through them all, ogling the store windows, taking it all in. Stopped by Rockefeller Center to see them working on the tree -- it's not lit yet, but soon. Hit Saks on 5th and came out with a lovely bottle of Coco Chanel I've been pining for (I could buy that in Dallas or in Boca Raton, but there's something more glamorous about buying Chanel at Saks on Fifth ave, isn't there?)
I walked through the busy streets, people hurrying home from work, traffic tying up, cabbies to and fro, just taking in the city. Twinkling lights, Christmas decorations, bells being rung on the streets, chestnuts roasted and sold on corners -- I loved it -- a small window of time for just the two of us -- me and the City -- and I couldn't help but feel a bit of Carrie Bradshaw all the while.
Ironically, as the plane took off from La Guardia and circled over Manhattan, I got to watch the city twinkle from much higher than 49 floors...and what was on the airplane TV? Sex and the City.