Monday, September 1, 2014

The Rest of the Winter

In keeping with my goal of 13 races in 2013, I ran my 13th race the morning after I arrived home from NYC.  So 4 hours of sleep later, I was suddenly running the Santa Shuffle 5 km in -45C temps.  Toss in some windchill for good measure.  Soooooo GOAL ACCOMPLISHED!!

While I was on my super duper amazeballs crazy awesome NYC birthday vacation, my sister who was pregnant with twins was put on bed rest and they needed help with life in general and my two year old niece.  So five days after arriving home, I took a two month unpaid leave from work and went to Calgary to stay with them.  It was so great staying with them for that long and being able to help my sister and then seeing two itty bitty teenie weenie babies arrive safely and come home two days later.  And I got to hang out every day with little BFF.  And spend Christmas with them.

And now for the babies!!!  First came baby girl weighing 5 lbs 1 oz, then a few minutes later baby boy weighing 5 lbs even.

Leaving the hospital - 5 lbs certainly doesn't take up much car seat!

And now we are sort of almost caught up to current, I think.  :)  Well at least, to mid Feb.

Monday, June 30, 2014

NYC Part 10! Last Part!

It's Friday, December 6th.  Last day.  I have to be at the airport by 3 and I have to somehow manage to fit everything into the suitcase I brought with me that was already kind of full when I arrived.  But I wanted to use every last minute and have one last wander around.  It was alternating between drizzle and raining.  I'm so so so happy that it was raining the evening I arrived and the day I left and not once in between.  I mostly just strolled around the area, got a coffee at Starbucks and went to Times Square.
Daytime wet Times Square.

Then of course because I had to . . . the Soup Nazi!!!

Look how exhausted I am!!

I ordered the lobster bisque and the lobster roll.  And here too, they packed it like a lunch!  I got an orange, a bottle of water, and a Lindor chocolate in the bag.  There was nowhere to sit where you wouldn't get rained on so I just started walking back toward the apartment.  Then I saw some outside sheltered seating outside a deli and no one was using it so I sat there to chow down.

And now I'm headed back to the apartment to pack.  One last stop in front of Letterman.

I went back and JAM-PACKED my suitcase.  I knew it was overweight but there wasn't anything I'd be able to do about it so I was prepared to pay. I said goodbye to my sweet awesome host Beny. He even said he didn't have anyone staying again till the next week and told me I could stay a few more days if I wanted.  I wanted to so bad!!

I hung my little keys back on the rack.

And got into my last NYC cab.

One word of advice when heading to the airport.  Look at your ticket and see which terminal you are flying out of.  When I arrived, it didn't matter, there's cabs everywhere.  However, when you are leaving, it helps to know that.  The cab driver asked me which airline I was flying and I said Westjet so he drove up to a terminal and I paid and hopped out.  I get in there cutting it a little too close for time and I'm running up and down the terminal looking for my airline.  I finally find a map and realize I'm in the wrong terminal.  I get shitty directions from staff, get lost one more time, then finally find the shuttle.  I run up to the Westjet gate, dangerously late considering I still had to get through security and I'm pouring with sweat and about to cry and then the agent says that my flight from NYC to Toronto has been cancelled and they've booked me on the next one.  Which still puts me into Toronto in time for my connection.  I was so relieved to now have a few spare minutes to get myself together.  But on the other hand, if I'd known that flight was cancelled, I would have tried to change it to Sunday and stayed with Beny for two more nights!!  On the plus side though, my bag was very overweight and she said today they weren't going to worry about that.  Phew!!  Also, once we were on the flight, seeing as how the majority of that flight had been bumped, they gave us a free drink.  

We arrived in Toronto and there was a DAVIDsTEA in the airport!!  I swore it wasn't there when I left and sure enough, they told me they'd been open for six days.  Before that, it was just a big white wall.
This is kind of a funny story for me anyway.  On the second flight from Toronto to Winnipeg, there was a grumpy woman behind me and I heard her order red wine so the flight attendant opens the bottle and hands it to her with a cup and says $8 and right away she said "no, it's free."  He said it wasn't free and only non-alcoholic beverages were free.  She said it was supposed to be free because our flight was cancelled and he said that was the previous flight and the flight we are currently on left on time as scheduled.  So she handed it back to him.  Then he came to me and I ordered a diet coke.  He finished his rows off and then when he was coming back, I guess because I was in a row by myself, he leaned over to me with the bottle of red wine and said that no one else ordered it and asked if I wanted it :)  Hell yes, I want free wine especially free wine that was from the grumpy woman behind me!!!  Hahaha!  It was delicious.

Then I arrived in Winnipeg and this was the line for cabs.  And we don't have cabs lined up and waiting like NYC.  I waited 45 minutes to get in a cab.  I was exhausted.  EXHAUSTED.  It was after midnight.  And it was -40C.  

I finally did get a cab and then I was home.  

BUT . . . BEST TRIP EVER.  Best idea I ever had.  Wouldn't change a thing.  

Sunday, June 15, 2014

NYC Part 9 of 10, I promise.

Thursday, December 5th, my last full day in NYC.  I had a bunch of little randoms and a few big ones to get done and was hoping so much to fit it all in.  I got up and headed straight to Bryant Park which is next to the NYC public library.  I checked out the park while waiting for the library to open.  I so wish I had time to skate, I wanted to skate on the Rockefeller Rink, Bryant Park rink and the Central Park rink and so far I hadn't on any!!!

You see a Wafels & Dinges and you stop.

Would be so cool to see these filled with people!
Once the library was open, I went over.  I have always wanted to be inside this building.

And then some views I couldn't wait to see!!

This picture makes me want to go back to school and be a super awesome student and study all the time in a beautiful library.

Then I walked to Grand Central to marvel at it quickly once more and caught a train from there to lower Manhattan to hit some of my randoms. :)

I didn't go in but I was RIGHT THERE!


Cupcake shop and steps from the show Girls.  Yes, I'm a geek.

Walking down the street and came across Epstein's.  Any Felicity fans??  This doesn't have anything to do with the show but I thought it was cool that there was an Epstein Bar.  :)

Saw this place on Eat St and had to come.  From looking 

From looking at the menu online, I knew I was having The Salty Pimp.
Vanilla ice cream, dulce de leche, sea salt, and chocolate dipped.

Right after this picture, I realized I was dripping all the way down the front of my shirt.

After that, I half walked, wandered, and trained my way uptown to see the tree and rink in daylight and to check out the Sak's windows Christmas story.  I'll spare you ALL those pictures.  

One of the Sak's 5th Ave windows.

The LOVE statue!
I was on my way back to the apartment to get ready for the evening's events when I noticed that HELLO DELI was open!!!  Every other time I walked by it was either closed or a huge line.  So I went in and Rupert Jee made me an egg salad sandwich!!!  His wife took my order and what's even cuter is they put it in a brown paper bag with an orange and a candy.  Like they just packed my lunch.  Then I quite timidly said "do you think I can get a picture with Rupert?" and she was so sweet.  She said "oh yes dear. RUPERT, NICE LADY WANTS PICTURE" and he popped around the corner for a picture.  So funny.  This is totally his smile.  Every other picture I've seen with him looks like this.  Hahaha!  So I didn't take it personally.  If you never watched Letterman, you'll have no idea who he is.

Then I walked the last two blocks back to the apartment, ate my sandwich and got ready for the next Broadway show . . .  KINKY BOOTS!!!!  If you've never seen the movie, do yourself a favour.  I loved it so seeing Kinky Boots on Broadway was a no brainer.

IT WAS SO AMAZING!!  I could see this show over & over again.  Next up, VERY IMPORTANT BUSINESS.  I'm now down to my last 16 hours of time in NYC and I need to fit a night of sleep and packing and cabbing to the airport in there.  But more importantly, I want desperately to skate on the Rockefeller Rink . . . AT NIGHT.  Anytime really, but night would be optimal.  And that night was my only option.  No skating on the night the tree was lit and I'm leaving the next afternoon.  Last skate of the night starts at 10:30 pm.  I got out of Kinky Boots and RAN to the rink.  It was hard to figure out with all the people where the people watching and where the skating line was so because I was just one person and everyone was confused about where the line was, I just kept inching forward and when they came out to clarify the line, I was in it!  YES YES YES!!!!!  IT WAS SO MUCH FUN.  I'm pretty good on skates so I basically just weaved in and out of falling and slow-moving people.  Then one lady asked if I was from Canada, bahahaha!!  The stereotype lives on.  Then another girl stopped me and asked if I would take her picture.  She laughed and said that I looked least likely to fall while holding her very nice camera.  We chatted a bit and she was also travelling alone and she was from Switzerland!!  I can't imagine going to Switzerland by myself.  Maybe one day I'll be brave enough to travel overseas by myself.  

Seeing as how I was having the time of my life and I was exhausted, I decided I should just keep going.  It's my last night!!!!   I'd been there for 9 days already and I still hadn't had cheesecake and since Junior's was still open for a few minutes, I ran over there.  It was so warm out (14C - 57F) that there were quite a few of us sitting at the patio tables with cheese cake.  It was delicious.

And then also because it was my last night, one more visit to Times Square at night. :)

This is how and when I found out Nelson Mandela had passed.  

Since it was so warm out, I present to you the Naked Cowboy.  Says so on his underwear.
And now that I've seen a man playing guitar in tight whitey's, cowboy boots, and a hat, I'm ready for bed!!  I plan to be up early for my last half day to take advantage of every last moment I have. :)