Writer's block!

My friend Elle read my blog and pointed out quite a bit of stuff that I left off from my trip to NYC. I must have had major writer’s block… or maybe I was getting sick and not thinking clearly. This is what she sent me:

okay so you left out of your blog –

barney’s (We shopped at Barney’s– the first time I’d ever been in a Barney’s. I actually bought something, too!)
adrian brody going by unnoticed (he walked by us after our night out in Chelsea. Elle saw him but I totally missed him. I missed so many celeb sightings, as is evidenced by the next one..)
robert verdi (host of “Surprise by Design” on The Discovery Channel… couldn’t miss him, he sat right behind us at the restaurant we had dinner at when I got in.)
the fact that i live in the “heights” and NOT in Brooklyn – skanky brooklyn (I did mention on Friday that she lives in Brooklyn Heights but not on Sunday… my bad. 😉
the atypical friendly cab driver (He was so funny. He picked us up from the Plaza Hotel and dropped us off at Greenwich Village. Our favorite quote “Ma’am I’m a professional. I will get you there…”)
dylan’s candy bar (Incredible candy store we visited while waiting to get in at Serendipity, which we ended up not doing anyway. I found Willy Wonka bars and got them for some coworkers, along with some yummy chocolates.)

upper east
upper west
greenwich village – aka west village by locals
east village
union square (Through our whirlwind visits and rides along the Subway, we visited many of NYC’s villages. I really feel like I got the grande tour. Lord knows I couldn’t have done it on my own. Those subways are confusing!!)
the amazing century 21 (The dept. store across from the WTC site… designer duds for dirt cheap. It was a madhouse. If I had more money I would have been SHOPPING!)
and how you are prolly the only person i know to go thru chinatown and not buy one thing – (Granted, the deals were to be had there… I just didn’t have the money. I would have loved to have gotten my sister a Louis Vuitton purse for cheap. Maybe a return trip is in order…)
SoHo and how the streets are dead on friday but slammed on weekends (This is extremely true, and not just of SoHo but everywhere. Sunday is MUCH busier than Friday.)

the the boys from france wearing italian couture while alfredo was wearing french couture and jumping down the footpath as he thought he saw a rat – (that i had warned you against) (Oh yeah.. the garbage along the streets.. what the hell!?! NYC has no alleys so they just pile garbage up on the street curbs. It took some getting used to. Chicago has a great alley network so you don’t see all that trash. And where there’s garbage there’s rats. I didn’t see one but Elle told me to be on the lookout.. so I was. And the French boys were realy nice … one spoke English well but the other was not as good. They accompanied us to “XL”… asking lots of questions along the way. Alfredo was a guy we met at “XL” who came with us to “G”… where we promptly lost him. Nice but a tad sketchy.)

my my – i should have written your blog. (and you did… thank you Elle. 🙂

So yes, I am sick sick SICK. Temp of 102 and miserable. I’ve slept so much I don’t know what time it is. So from here I am going to hit the hay again and hopefully get rid of this crap in time for TURKEY. 🙂

Have a great Thanksgiving everyone.

For Sebastian

On the Gay Bloggers Tribe the other day, we learned about the plight of a fellow blogger, Sebastian, from Australia. He was involved in a horrific incident where he was hit by a car, presumbably (but not yet determined) on purpose. He is in criticial condition.

The community is reeling from so much bad news lately This latest chapter does not bode well with any of us, even across the pond.

Aaron of 1000 Words or More has designed a lovely icon for us to use in support of Sebastian’s plight. I am adding this icon to my site today.

Please visit Sebastian’s blog, Holding the Man, and get to know this brave young man.

So much to do, so little time

Back home safe and sound…

I feel like it’s been another week since my last post, but it’s only been 2 days. So much has happened…

Sunday

We woke up and headed down to the Financial district. They were having a street fair on Broadway, and Elle bought a gorgeous Indian quilt for her extra bedroom, where her current roommate Rob is staying. Since she’s moving to Australia, she wants to dress the place up a bit so it will sell. I think she made a great choice, personally.

We walked down Broadway toward Ground Zero.

As we got to the end of the block, I immediately recognized familiar buildings.

The Burger King on the corner of Church street that served as a temporary morgue.

The Deutsche Bank building, which although is still standing, is ravaged with mold and will probably soon come down.

The Financial buildings, which now dominate the skyline.

The Wintergarden, which was destroyed and is now rebuilt.

The new 7 World Trade, which is almost completely topped off already.

Century 21, the department store right across the street from WTC, and the Millenium Hilton next to it.

And St. Paul’s Chapel, probably the most moving display of memoribilia about WTC that exists.

And of course, the hole in the ground that once was home to two of the most magnificent towers ever built.

Indeed, when you first see the vast expanse of nothing, surrounded now by a large fence, dotted with stories and pictures of times past, it is jarring. Especially if you have been to this same spot before, when the towers and the complex itself actually stood there. Especially if you remember going into those buildings, never knowing what would happen less than 10 years later.

Especially when you remember what happened, because you watched it happen, in real time. And you remember the sorrow you felt for the people who endured the tragedy, from those who died to those who just happened to be there that day.

It was a lot to take in. And we did, and I’m glad we did.

From Ground Zero we headed to Chinatown, which is right on the outskirts of SoHo and walked the narrow streets and perused the multitude of vendors selling hocked goods at ridiculous prices. We kept going and crossed into SoHo and had lunch, then caught the subway back toward Brooklyn.

On the way back, Elle mentioned that she sometimes gets out at the Brooklyn Bridge and walks across. I was pretty tired, but for some reason, this sounded like something I wanted to do. So I said “Why don’t we do that?”

And so we did. It was the perfect cap to an adventuresome weekend.

I didn’t get to see a show, but I’m ok with that. I’ve seen my share of Broadway-style shows, in fact I’ve seen a few in previews before they even got to Broadway (including The Producers, which was totally unforgettable.) So I really am not mourning that at all. There will be other opportunities.

I caught a cab from Elle’s at 8 and was in the air by 9:30.

Monday

Luckily I had to work late so I slept in. My plane landed at 10:30 on Sunday but I didn’t get home until 1am thanks to taking the El home. LONG trip!!! But damn it was good to sleep in my own bed and see my boys. 🙂

But no rest for the wicked. I had pies to make for Thanksgiving and Monday night was the only night I could do it. So when I got home, I immediately started making Sweet Potato Pie. Yum. 🙂 They turned out damn nice, too.

Tuesday

Work and then rehearsal, but wait… the crazy schedule (and cold/warm/wet weather) of New York caught up to me… I went to work but came home early. I’m coughing and have chills and am feeling overall miserable. So as soon as I hit “publish” I am hitting the sack.

And that leads us to now.

Pictures… yes, I know, I am working on trying to get them set up so you can view them easily. I have something ready to go, I just have to upload them to a site. As soon as they are ready I will post the link.

So… with that, I bid you peace. 🙂

Autumn in New York

Coming to you live from New York City…

I’m having a wonderful time, even if the weather isn’t cooperating so well.

It’s been damp, rainy, warm one minute, cold the next.

But that hasn’t stopped us from hitting the town with much vigor!!!

My flight was about 25 minutes late. We left Chicago in pretty good time but once we got to LaGuardia, we circled around so many times I thought I was going to pass out.

Luckily I didn’t have a bag checked so I got right off the plane and headed toward the baggage claim to meet Elle, my friend who I am staying with. She didn’t recognize me at first. She was probably zoning from waiting for so long for me. 🙂 But it was so great to see her.

I haven’t seen Elle in over 5 years. She was one of the first people I met when I moved to Chicago in 1997. We became fast friends, and have remained so ever since. Our adventures were chronicled in my first journal, which I kept from 1997-1998. Click here to read some of the stories.

So Elle and I, five years later, have reconnected, and are having an absolutely marvelous time.

Yesterday we had dinner and hit the clubs in Chelsea. First we went to XL and then to G. Deadsville. Sure the boys were cute and all, but they were just both kind of not happening. But we walked the streets and checked out the neighborhood. It was a lovely evening, in around the 50’s temp-wise.

We took a taxi back to Elle’s place in Brooklyn Heights, where we had the driver drop us at the promenade. Overlooking Lower Manhattan, this was my first view of that Battery Park area, in person, since 1994. I took some pictures, which I’ll post when I get home. (I forgot my card reader, darnitall.)

Today we slept in a bit and then headed to Uptown, where we intended on having lunch at Serendipity, but it was a mob scene. So we shopped around and caught a cab to the Plaza Hotel, where we took some more pictures and used the bathroom. 😉

Off to Greenwich Village, where we finally had dinner at Cowgirl. Great comfort food in a down-home atmosphere with a gay twist. Just what I needed. 🙂

Then off to some shopping… and a visit to the Magnolia Bakery… Oh. My. God. I never smelled such incredible chocolate in all of my life. They were baking fresh cupcakes. I just had to get a few. And some banana pudding that Elle said — and which was confirmed by many of those in line — was the best in the world. Got some of that too. 🙂

Next stop– downtown. Night was upon us, and it was time to see the sights and the lights. We started off near the Ed Sullivan Theatre and made our way to St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Then off to Rockefeller Center and then Times Square. Where it started to pour. Cats and Dogs. It was cold, wet and crowded. I had a headache. It was time to catch a subway home.

I took a 2 hour nap and here I am.

We had plans to head out again, but with the weather being so crummy and us both feeling incredibly crappy, we decided to stay in.

So tomorrow… a visit to Ground Zero. I had visited the World Trade Center in 1994 with my sister, and we went to the top to the observatory. That was just one year after the initial bombing in 1993. It was still fresh in our minds, but we went anyway. So the fact that I actually had visited WTC makes me want to see it now. It just feels like something I need to do.

We’re also going to try to catch Avenue Q, or some show, tomorrow. Hopefully that will happen, but if not, I’m sure we’ll find something exciting to take up our time.

My flight is at 9:00PM NYC time… I’ll be home by 10:30PM Chicago time.

So there’s a lot to do with very little time to do it all. Nothing like being on the go! 🙂

I’ll have pictures galore when I get home. In the meantime, have a wonderful weekend.

Start Spreadin' The News…

Well the time has come! I am on my way to NYC in a couple hours.

I have to tell you one thing before I leave. Last night, I came home to find a package in my mailbox.

When I saw the name I smiled and said “What on earth is she sending me?”

I ran up the steps to my apartment, grabbed a scissors and carefully cut open the package.

I found a beautiful hand-knitted scarf inside from Pua.

Here’s me in front of (a picture of) the Brooklyn Bridge, wearing my new scarf!

I called her right away to thank her. It’s really gorgeous. 🙂 Pua says it’s a hug from her… and I truly believe it. 🙂

So here and now I want to say thank you, Pua. You’re an absolute gem of a person. Your heart and her soul shines through in everything you do. Your love for your family and her passion for your friends is so evident. I’m really touched.

And this gift, hand-crafted with love from Pua herself, was a huge way of making me feel very, very special.

I have made some wonderful friends in my time here in blog-land. I treasure each and every one of you. We share each other’s joys and sorrows, triumphs and tragedies. And we bitch when there is plenty to bitch about. 🙂 It’s been a wonderful experience so far, and I can honestly say I’m glad to have become a part of it.

Mush mush mush, I know. But… honest.

So thank you, Pua. I will wear it with pride. 🙂

And have a wonderful weekend everyone. I will be back on Sunday with stories and pictures. In the meantime, be good. 🙂