Archive for the ‘travel’ Category

Yesterday, Ben and I went into work with my dad. Ben worked for a bit from my dad’s office and then went with him to an Ezra Klein, Wonkblog, lunch talk. I went to the Renwick, and had lunch with my brother, David, at Food Truck Friday on Farragut Square, where I ate calabaza, chickpea, and spinach soup from Pepe‘s food truck. YUM! I also stopped into a Weight Watchers meeting. I miss my old meeting leader.

We met up later in the afternoon and went to the National Geographic Museum to see 1001 Inventions of the Golden Age and Birds of Paradise. WOOHOO, butt wiggling mating dances! They had an interactive video game thing so that you could mimic one of the simpler mating dances.

In the evening, we stopped for a smoothie before getting in the car and going to early services at NVHC, out in Reston, so that my dad could say kaddish for his brother. We ended up staying and chatting with people and nibbling on veggies and desserts for dinner. Oops.

Today we visited another new-to-us synagogue. The rabbi was great and the people were friendly enough, but the cantor was very cantorial and the location was a bit ritzy for us. I’m feeling a bit spiritually homeless, but at least we’re making friends every other week at Segulah Minyan, in DC, with other young adults. We’ll be there next week and visit another synagogue the following week, and be back at Segulah for Purim the following Sunday. Since Ben will be finishing week 2 at his new job, I think he might want to stay home and sleep in that Saturday. Driving 20-30 minutes to go to shul sucks compared to our 8-10 minute car commute or 30-40 minute leisurely bike ride in Boulder!

Tomorrow, I think we’re going to the Postal Museum tomorrow and then meeting up with my dad and David for dinner at Joe’s. Nom nom nom. Joe’s is my pizza cognition pizza. No other NY style eggplant slice can live up to it.

Monday, I have an interview with a legal staffing agency. I’m also working on some cover letters for jobs that might not pay as well but will probably leave me a happier and more fulfilled person at the end of the day than most of the “cog in the machine” legal gigs I qualify for.

Other than that, I’m re-teaching myself how to play viola so that I can play with a local ensemble, with other transient young professionals, for their next concert cycle.

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Here’s the day-by-day of how our 10 day road trip from Denver to DC went:

Friday, December 28th: movers were 2 hours late, they got the truck loaded by 4 PM, we went out for pho, and then vacuumed and cleaned up a bit before we went to Becca’s for shabbat.

Saturday, December 29th: lots of nothing, Netflix, sleeping, and sitting in front of Becca’s faux fireplace, then we met up with some friends and went to Domo for dinner (where I had the BEST ramen I’ve ever had).

Sunday, December 30th: unpacked and reloaded the car, ate pie for lunch, and then got the tires checked at Costco before hitting the road around 1 PM. It started snowing around 8 PM, so we drove until 11 PM Central Time and stopped overnight at a highway hotel Junction City, Kansas because the snow was supposed to be worse the next day.

Monday, December 31st: It took us almost 5 hours to drive the remaining 3 hours of our drive to Leeland, KS, where Ben’s aunt lives. After a disappointing lunch we went to Whole Foods to stock up on ingredients and then visited Ben’s grandma for a bit. Then we blobbed out on the couch, made ourselves a big pot of pasta and some salad, did some laundry, and went to bed. We’re exciting people. Also, it was 12 F outside.

Tuesday, January 1: Had New Years Day brunch with Ben’s grandma and her friend at their retirement home, then hung out with his grandmother for a bit and went into Kansas City for the afternoon. The intention had been to go to LegoLand, but apparently you need kinder to go there, so we got our tickets refunded and wandered around the skybridges and visited Union Station where they had an awesome Lionel Trains exhibit about all the different gauges.

Wednesday, January 2: We hit the road around 10 AM after cleaning up the kitchen and reloading the car. Ben dropped me off at Walgreens to get a flu shot while he went to buy stamps at the Post Office. It’s a good thing we didn’t go very far though because I realized that I’d left my phone, plugged in and charging, in the kitchen at his aunt’s house. Oops. So we went back and picked it up before heading having lunch at a old timey bakery/cafe (Dave’s) in Independence, MO. Then we spent the afternoon at the Truman Library. Then we drove to St. Louis, stopping for dinner at Panera somewhere along the way. We used a Groupon I had for a convention center hotel that included parking, welcome drinks, and breakfast in the morning.

a funky church in Independence, MO

a funky church in Independence, MO

Thursday, January 3: Breakfast wasn’t exciting, but it was included in our Groupon so we made the best of it. Then we bundled up and walked over to the arch. It’s gorgeous! The Jefferson National Expansion Memorial (museum) was OK, but I wasn’t into it. Frankly, I think the flu shot was making me feel like crap so I did a lot of staring at things without reading them and sitting on a bench with my brain turned off. Ben did most of the driving. After checking into IndyHostel, in Indianapolis, Indiana, we had dinner at Napolese, which was amazing (and not just because we were hungry).

Friday, January 4th: We met up with a classmate of mine from Interlochen for brunch at Zest, it was yummy! Then we hit the road and drove for a few hours, starting a new audiobook, Argo. We stopped in Columbus, OH for ice cream at Jeni’s and met up with a friend from Chicago, his wife, and their new baby. I had 1/2 a scoop of some AWESOME cherry chevre ice cream and 1/2 a scoop of cherry lambic sorbet. I think cherries make me think of warm weather and it was too cold to snow outside. We slogged on towards Pittsburgh, stopping no where memorable for a roadside dinner. Not the shabbat we were hoping for, but it gave us more time to listen to our audiobook!

Saturday, January 5th: We’d called ahead to one the of the synagogues in the area that had seemed worth visiting, to see if anyone might have hosted us for shabbat, the person who answered the phone had no idea what to do with that question and I was so shocked by her lack of welcoming that I forgot to leave my name and number. Oops. Instead, we had an AMAZING brunch at Square Cafe and the went to the Andy Warhol Museum, which is in what used to be a Jewish neighborhood that is now mostly black. Dinner was disappointing Chinese food downtown, about a mile from the convention center hotel Ben had found us a good deal on.

Pittsburgh Platform Plaque

Pittsburgh Platform Plaque

Sunday, January 6th: We had a quick breakfast at a bagel shop downtown and then we took the light rail to the the Carnegie Science Center. We spent most of the day there, then took the light rail back to the hotel, went to a bizzaro Turkish/pizza place, walked in and then left, then picked up some sandwiches for dinner, went back to the hotel and blobbed out to watch the season premier of Downton Abby on PBS.

Monday, January 7th: Ben paid and exorbitant fee to get the car out of the garage (stupid weekday vs. weekend pricing), and we headed off to Johnstown, PA, where we’d meant to go to the Johnstown Flood Museum, but it was closed (in spite of their website and the sign on the door saying that their open every day but Thanksgiving and Christmas Days). We wandered town for 20 minutes, got back in the car and drove in alternating shifts to my parents’ house, getting to Gaithersburg (where Ben will be working) around 5 PM. The rush hour traffic at that hour is heading OUT to the suburbs, not into the city, so we didn’t have any issues getting home in time to meet up with my dad for dinner.

Post Mortem of our trip: I think we’re foodies.

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We staying in a motel 1/2 way between the beach and the airport (about 10 min to either) the night before we were to fly home to Colorado. You can see the photos from our evening beach excursion in the previous post. Since we had an 8 AM flight and a rental car to return, we didn’t want to have a big drive to worry about before 7 AM in order to return the car and check our one suitcase -we always fly out carry-on only with United and bring a duffel bag to pack dirty laundry in, giving us room in at least one of the small roller bags to pack souvenir bottles of wine and other food products we like to purchase while traveling (preserved cherries and maple syrup this time).

Anyway, we packed the night before, leaving out a change of clothes and tooth brushes, and swim suits to dry. The morning was a breeze since we’d pre-packed and had some pastries from a bakery in Traverse City stashed in our carryon bags. We returned the car, checked our suitcase and sleepily waited to board the plane (note: at this point I had an awful head cold and was snuggled into my sweatshirt and cuddling a box of kleenex).

We boarded our tiny plane, had to gate check our roller bags because they would never have fit in the overhead bins of the tiny plane, and took off on-time.

I really wanted a ginger ale and was waiting for drink service (about 20-30 min after we took off) and watching the landscape below.  My ears were KILLING me. I kept rubbing the little flappy part over the ear opening, trying to get my ears to pop. The pilot made an announcement that we were about to fly over Milwaukee. About 2 minutes later he made an announcement that because they were unable to stabilize the air pressure inside the cabin, we were unable to assent above 17,000 feet and didn’t have enough fuel to make it to Denver at that altitude. Therefor we would be making an emergency landing in Chicago and would touchdown in about 30 minutes. Doh!

We landed in Chicago, went to the service desk and were issued tickets for a 3:30 PM flight to Denver. It was about 9:45 AM at that point. We also each received a $10 meal voucher.

After plunking down to pirate some wifi from the airport hotel, we each emailed our bosses to let them know that we were stuck in travel purgatory and wouldn’t be in until tomorrow.

Then we sat around debating what to do with our time in Chicago. We figured we’d head to the Art Institute and go see American Gothic, but I got us off a stop too early on the El and we ended up right on the Chicago River. Then I thought: a river cruise! So I dashed into a nearby fancy hotel and asked the concierge if she could book us 2 tickets on the Architecture River Cruise! No dice, it was high tourist season and they’d been booked for weeks. Oops. Then I was informed that tickets to the Art Institute were $18 each. Also a no-go for us.

Dejected, we walked aimlessly along the Magnificent Mile until we saw as sign for Beard Papa’s, a French chain that serves various styles of cream puffs and gourmet coffee drinks. Aah, the perfect birthday indulgence (yes, this all happened on my 29th birthday).

Yes, we had cream puffs the size of cheese burgers for lunch, and sweet cream tea. DELICIOUS!

We wandered the mall a bit before retreating back to the airport so that we could have a proper lunch of quick gourmet Mexican at Rick Bayless‘s Tortas Frontera in the airport and spend our vouchers before our flight. YUM! We split a Roasted Garlic and Mushrooms Torta (sandwich) and a Tres Quesos Mollete and each got our own agua fresca (fresh squeezed juice). DELICIOUS!

My birthday may not have been as boring as I’d planed (fly home, eat lunch, go to work), but it was WAY TASTIER!

In the end, we got on the plane to Denver, flew home, got our checked bag, waited just 10 minutes for the bus to Boulder, got home and did laundry and ate something un-memorable for dinner. Again, not what we’d planned, but still a great day!

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Other than issues with United/Continental, this vacation was pretty awesome. The sucky things were all airplane and head cold related (and I’m absolutely convinced that I caught this head cold from the germ-bag seated behind me on our first outgoing flight).

We had a 10:30 AM flight to ORD that had the wrong gate info on the board and we had to RUN like crazy people through the terminal to board our flight on time (we got there about 2 minutes before our seating group boarded, hooray for being in sardine class?). Then we had a layover in Chicago that couldn’t decide which gate it was leaving from before we even had a plane (gate changed three times and in the end left from it’s original gate assignment about 2 hours late). Oh well. We weren’t in a rush. I did realize, while we were on the ground in Chicago, that I had neglected to pack a camera. No fancy camera, no point and shoot, nothing more than the camera on my phone which takes OK photos but nothing worth sharing. Oops.

Once we arrived in Traverse City I reveled at how nice/big/shiny the new airport is! Wow, what an upgrade from the Detroit-style dumpy airport I’d been through at least 20 times as a teenager (to/from camp and two years of boarding school with a sprinkling on auditions in there too).

We rented a tiny car but were upgraded to a Nissan Sentra (I don’t want one, the seat isn’t comfortable for my short-y self and the breaks were jumpy). We watched the sun set as we drove to Interlochen (using our new GPS!) and met up with Andrea’s mom and sister at the Maddy Cabin. That cabin is BEAUTIFUL! Dinner was a perch sammich and key lime pie at The Hofbrau and then to bed. Day one was a FULL day.

view from the deck of the Maddy Cabin

Thursday and Friday we spent the day on campus seeing shows and visiting all the new buildings that have cropped up in the last 11 years. The only ones in the pipeline when I was there were the Writing House and a new visual arts buildings, they were tossing around the idea of a new library too. Now there are a whole bunch of new buildings and some of the old ones have been updated (the Shed is no longer crappy and the Phoenix got A/C and a total makeover!). After two days of stalking, we finally caught up with Mr. Holland who invited us to the string faculty potluck on Friday night at his new house. It was really great to catch up with him, Joan, and my class piano teacher/Venture Troop leader Dr. Coonrod.

DuoPlay piano of Gershwin/Gershwin Rhapsody in Blue at the Music House Museum

I’d have more pictures for you, but I forgot my camera and didn’t buy a disposable 35mm until we ventured into Traverse City on Saturday to buy goodies for my dad at American Spoon Fruit, wander around downtown, and stock up on provisions for a picnic dinner while waiting for Les Preludes on Sunday night. We also visited the Music House Museum, Grand Traverse Distillery, and Moomers on Saturday too. I was super disappointed that the ONLY flavors I could eat the day at Moomers were the vanilla and vanilla soft serve. I prefer Blue Bunny vanilla from the Melody Freeze over Moomers and Glacier Ice Cream over both of those (though for a dollar/cone you really can’t beat the Melody Freeze).

Grand Traverse Distillery

Grand Traverse Distillery stills

We rushed through the things we wanted to do on Saturday to get to the dance recital on time, but it was relocated from the dance pavilion (lots of seats) to the dace building (not many seats) and we didn’t get to see it. Oh well.

Sunday was stuffed with concerts, including seeing HSCO (now called the Interlochen Philharmonic) conducted by Mr. Holland and included a piece for harp ensemble and string orchestra!

Dedicated to the promotion of world friendship through the universal language of the arts.

why yes, that is a VERY tall man conducting NINE harps

Mr. Holland and me, backstage at Kresge 8/5/12

Mrs. and Mr. Holland, 8/5/12

After they brought out a podium for the concert master to conduct the Interlochen Theme, we hung out with the Hollands backstage for a bit and offered to help Mr. Holland pack out his studio. He retired in May after teaching 40 years at Interlochen Arts Academy. I’m a little disappointed that I missed both my 10 year reunion (to get married) and the 50th anniversary of IAA/Mr. Holland’s retirement party, but this was what I needed, more personal interaction and less party time.

Les Preludes was preceded by the final movement of Beethoven 9, played by WYSO. It was well done, but I remember playing FULL symphonies as a kid, but maybe they just felt like full symphonies at the time….

Les Preludes 2012

Monday I started to feel a little crummy, but we had to check out the Maddy Cabin and head out by 11 AM. We packed the car up early and packed salads and sandwiches made with all our leftovers. We went to go help Mr. Holland load the van only to discover that he’d used the “Packing Survival Kit” I’d left him to bribe the maintenance guys to do it for him! If you’re wondering what’s in a Packing Survival Kit, it’s 4 Milky Way bars, a box of kleenex, and a box of Tension Tamer tea.

sunset on Green Lake from the Kissing Tree, Interlochen 8/5/12

After packing the car we learned that Mr. Holland had used the candy bars to bribe the maintenance guys
to pack his car for him, we said our goodbyes and hit the road for the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. I was feeling pretty crummy, so we didn’t do the dune climb, but we did take a 2 mile dune hike that met up with the crest of the dune climb. I count it as a minor miracle  that neither of us got poison ivy on that hike. Think Fire Island amounts of poison ivy around, I guess the leaves of three really like sand dunes.

overlooking a shallow lake, it’s only 12′ deep and looks so tropical!

Since I wasn’t feeling well, we did mostly driving activities like visiting the old Life Saving Station and driving the scenic loop. There were a few photo worthy stops along the way and the little driving guide from the ranger station was very helpful. There were also phone numbers to call and listen to a Ranger Talk about some of the points of interest along the loop, but it was windy and hot and we didn’t feel like sitting in the car to listen to them.

dune hike, Sleeping Bear Dunes scenic loop 8/6/12

There were definitely people out there who were ignoring the weather conditions and climbed all the way from the scenic overlook down to Lake Michigan. They are NUTS!

scenic overlook of Lake Michigan with North Manitou in the background

We visited Glen Arbor and got a takeout pizza and some local beers and spent a quiet evening reading on the patio before retiring for the night at Fountain Point. It’s a cute place and the bed was super comfortable. But I wish their website better listed their activities though, we would have gotten there earlier and left more energy for ourselves because I really wanted to try paddle boarding and they rented them out at $25/four hours to guests! Oh well, next time?

Tuesday we slept in and ate a big breakfast of milk tea, cinnamon toast, and cheese slices at Fountain Point before heading out to a cidery, lunch in Suttons Bay, and visiting a few wineries all before heading back to Traverse City. We checked into the Knights Inn (actually quite clean and very quiet with the window closed), and headed to the beach! Finally, we got to wear our swimsuits and spent 2 hours playing in the sand before treated ourselves to a huge dinner and drinks at the Mackinac Brewing Company (after a quick shower and change of clothes, of course!).

playing at the beach on Lake Michigan 8/7/12

Getting home was a whole other adventure, which I’ll write about later since I have no photos to share for it and this post is long enough already.

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Ben and I booked plane tickets and a rental car for a week in NW Lower Michigan! We’ll be gone August 1 through 8 (my birthday)! In my opinion, it’s when Michigan is most beautiful, highs in the low upper 70s, and down to around 55 at night. Maybe Ben will get to see one of those torrential rain storms I remember, but just one because we have a lot of outdoor places I want to visit (and a few indoor).

On the list of places to go:

Empire Bluffs Trail view of Sleeping Bear Dunes.

Empire Bluffs Trail view of Sleeping Bear Dunes. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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It looks like we’ll be taking a road trip this summer! All we need to do is pick a week and make lodging reservations. WOOHOO, camping for 2 days near Dinosaur, visiting multiple hot springs, and Trail Ridge Road! Can someone please buy me a National Parks Pass as an early birthday present, please? RMNP is so close, but we never go because we’re cheap. What a shame.

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Like many Jewish people who are originally from the East Coast, I make a yearly pilgrimage home to the DC area for the first night seder every year. I’ve missed it only twice in my life, once my freshman year of college when I though going to my friend Steve’s parents’ house would be an acceptable alternative (it wasn’t), missing the one and only time my mom’s cousin Nancy hosted in CT; and once when Passover was so late in the year as to be only 2 weeks before final exams and I stayed in Colorado to volunteer at the Hillel seder to make it what I needed while having time to study, missing the only time seder was held at my grandparents’ retirement McMansion in Solomon, Maryland.

reform passover table setting

This year, as we’ve done since I graduated from college, Ben and I split Passover between our families. This is an awesome way to do it for many reasons, Shabbat with my parents is spiritually very unsatisfying (it may as well be Sunday, no one there cares), seeing our families at least once a year in their native habitats reminds us how much we’ve become citizens of the People’s Republic of Boulder, and most of all we don’t have to kasher our kitchen if we won’t be home to use it!

The first night of Passover this year was on a Friday night, meaning that there were TWO shabbat dinners during Passover this year. This was awesome for us because we were able to spend the first night with my family, the second night at a Kehilat Shalom’s second night community seder, and then travel up to the Boston area for a few days to sight see and spend Shabbat with Ben’s family.

If you’re counting that means that we flew out to DC the Wednesday before Passover started, and up to Boston a week later, flying back to Colorado on Sunday, after the end of Passover. We were gone for 10 days. My limit for family. I usually have a 5 day tolerance for family, but we were able to extend it to 7 days by staying in the basement and letting gramma stay in my room. It is MUCH quieter in the basement.

Why were we in DC for so long, you might ask. Because Ben gave his first talk in anticipation of looking for a PostDoc position this coming December! He spoke at NIST Gaithersburg, the main location of which the Boulder labs are just a branch. He had an awesome backwards commute fro McLean, up 495 and out 270 to super-suburban Maryland. I’m not sure if could be happy living out there, but I’m sure we could find somewhere to bunker down for 2-4 if he ends up working there. Other programs he’s interested in are at NIST Boulder, Yale, Harvard, and MIT. My husband is no slouch!

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Since mid January I’ve been working part-time, as a contract legal assistant in Golden. It’s great. I really enjoy estate planning, it’s helpful! Seriously, law mostly feels like civilized arguing, but estate planning is helpful to the people who seek it out. OK, I’ll stop kvelling.

What else is going on….. Our betta fish, Mr. Rocky Balbetta, has been adopted out after eating my oldest cherry shrimp, one of the younger shrimps is now pregnant (although it’s her first clutch and she drops an egg or two every time she shifts her gestational sack to poo). We also added two spiky dwarf snails to the aquarium, who ate all the algae off the windows in 3 days! Now we have to add algae tablets to the tank once a week to keep them well fed.

Two weeks ago was Ben’s lab ski retreat. I did the meal planning and took the two first-years who organized the trip to Costco. They seemed to think it was going to be a bachannal, it wasn’t. Some of the older students (Ben’s age and post-docs) brought their Magic The Gathering cards, and someone else brought National Parks Monopoly. It was what we all needed, two days of great skiing and evenings of eating too much and hanging out in the hot tub.

Last week, Ben and I went to a preconception class at the Boulder Community Hospital. It made us realize that 1) BCH is awesome and it would be a great place to birth a baby, 2) we’re not financially or really even emotionally ready to have a baby, and 3) I need to loose 10-15% of my body weight to have as healthy a pregnancy as I can. That might take a while. The good news is that I can indulge my selfish emotions and spending habits by continuing to ski, buying new skis, and exercising on them in the meantime. So the only thing that’s changed since the Affordable Healthcare Act has upgraded my insurance to include dental and maternity care is that I’m going to the dentist next week and I’m experimenting with starting pre-natal vitamins and trying to find one that doesn’t block me up (apparently high doses of good-for-you-stuff makes me have sad tummy). Please, don’t ask about anything until Ben graduates (December at the earliest).

This past weekend I fell in love with a pair of demo skis. I’ve been using Becca’s old skis, but they’re not right for me, so I rented a pair of regular old intermediate skis and HATED them. Seriously, I don’t know how to ski on those, it was like skiing on 2x4s, so I went back to the rental shop and told them as much, after chit-chatting with the technician he asked what I usually ski on (busted old hand-me-down 156 Nordica Dobermann skis with some seriously heavy racer bindings). He gave me last year’s Volkl Kenja skis, 149, and ultralight Marker bindings, and I fell in love with them. They’re some of the lightest skis in the all-mountain category, and they felt GREAT, but I’m not sold yet. So, Thursday, Lisa and I are going up for a Women’s demo day, up at Loveland, to try out my dream skis and some cheaper ones too. Becca and her dad, Ed, have sourced my dream skis for $425, un-mounted, and I’ve heard rumors of financial assistance when it comes to bindings…. That’s still a lot of money compared to the free ones I was on, but those no longer suit me.

Also this past weekend was  a big fundraiser dinner for Aish Kodesh, the local modern orthodox congregation. I got a free ticket by being one of the board members for the local Jewish CSA (Tuv Ha’aretz), since we donated a large share with a fruit share to their congregation (the original idea was that it could be used for kiddishes but they decided to auction it off, whatever), so they gave us a ticket to the gala as a thank you. It ended up being one of the highest valued ticket items, and one of the most bid on too. Ben was able to go as a representative of our Young Adult Minyan for only $36, and we entered the iPod Touch raffle and big on a pair of earrings (and won!), so we didn’t feel like complete free-loaders. It was fun and we actually knew a lot of people there.

Finally, this week my boss in Golden is out of town (thus the Thursday ski trip), so I’m working about an hour a day from home for her. It’s nice to have a mini vacation! I get to blog, catch up with my TiVo, give the aquarium a through cleaning, and I’m going to experiment with making granola tomorrow and elaborate challah braids later this week.

So there you go, great voyeurs of the internets, you should all be caught up on the past month’s major goings on now.

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I’m going to NY again!!!

I’ve been furloughed at work. Hopefully they’ll call me back in January…. Anyway, Sunday I’m flying out to NY for 4 days to help Andrea pack up her apartment before she moves to South Hampstead, London, in TWO WEEKS. Whaaaa. At least she’ll have a beautiful flat that looks a lot like these row homes, where I can come visit. Also, gchat still works no mater where you are :P

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Thursday night, Ben arrived in NY to join me at Andrea’s apartment. We passed out on the sofa bed and  woke up waht felt like very early to leave with Andrea on her way into the city for work.

On Friday we got up “early” to meet my IAA friend, Jenn, for breakfast at Dominique Ansel Bakery, in SoHo, after reading the Serious Eats review. The Perfect Little Egg Sandwich was good, but the bread was slightly over done. All the pastries we tried (including my favorite, the Kouign Amann, which we first tried on our honeymoon, at Les Madeleines) were good, slightly over done but REALLY good.

After breakfast we wandered over to CB2, where we didn’t find anything we needed, AKA we left empty handed. Then, we headed uptown to the Met Museum. We got there right on time to take a guided tour of the musical instruments exhibit before a light lunch at the cafe.

That’s where things went down hill, as we were finishing up our lunch I realized that my upper torso was COVERED in hives. So, I downed a benadryl, washed my hands in the bathroom and we made a beeline to my favorite thing in the museum: the Temple of Dendur, where Ben was more interested in the granite crocodile; and to visit William before I got too loopy to be a good date. I walked myself back to the subway station while Ben hung out at the museum a while longer. I asked the lady next to me on the train to wake me up before my stop, but I woke up on my own. I hauled my ass back to Andrea’s apartment, took another benedryl, and passed out on the couch for 3.5 hours.

We had shobbos dinner together with Andrea (she and I completely butchered the brisket recipe the night before, but it came out well). We ate late, but Ben happily scarfed down 1/2 of a 3 lb brisket on his own, while I daintily picked at a slice and filled up on salad and couscous and Andrea ate her normal bird portion.

We cleaned up and went to bed (where we were STEAMED by the busted radiator and left all the windows in the living room wide open). The whole reason for our reason to be in NY was the next morning, my cousin’s bat mitzvah!

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