Monday, July 11, 2011

The Big Apple & A Little Cheese

You know you had a great weekend when you can barely open your eyes when the alarm goes off on Monday morning...

Well, OK. That's not 100% true, because most Monday mornings are hard for me-but this one was especially hard! We had a busy, busy weekend...

It began on Saturday afternoon. One of Brian's sisters and one of his brothers graduated from college this year, and Saturday was their party. Unfortunately we already made travel plans when we found out about it, so we weren't able to stay for a long time, but we wanted to be sure that we went to say congratulations and hello. We hung out for a big, helped make a cold cut platter and had lunch but then had to jet out for our long drive to Manhattan.

If you know me in real life, you probably know that sometimes I get a little...punchy. Or silly. Or...weird. I've been told it's endearing, which is good, because when I get that way, it's hard for me to stop until it's all out of me. I mention this now because on the ride down to NY, I had several moments in which one of us said something and I burst out laughing hysterically...and kept laughing hysterically for a long time.

I like those kind of days with Brian because one of my favorite things to do is to make him smile and when I make him laugh-it's the greatest. AND-if I make him laugh harder than he normally does it's even better. Unfortunately I don't remember all of the things that made me crack up, but I do remember that one of the fits of laughter had to do with a sign we saw that said, "Squeeze Left" instead of "Merge Left". I found that to be hysterical. But that's not why I was cracking up. Throughout the trip I kept using it and once exclaimed how funny it would be if we said that to someone when we got into an accident..."Sir, it was YOUR fault. If you had just squeezed right, we wouldn't be in this situation!" To which Brian said, "I think the correct term is squoze." (I actually just giggled a little bit thinking about it.) Then he said, "You should have squozed, sir." Bwaaa haaa haaa haa...I imagined saying this with a straight face and I literally could not breath b/c I was laughing too hard. Squozed. C'mon. That's funny stuff.

In any case, it was that kind of drive down to NY and though it was a long trip, it was fun. We arrived in the city around 8:30pm, dropped our stuff off and promptly made our way to Union Square, which was where Brian wanted to hang out.

For dinner we went to a noodle house called Republic. It's the kind of place that looks small from the outside but goes on and one forever on the inside. You sit at long bench tables and if you don't have enough people in your party to fill the bench, others will be seated with you. Neither of us had eaten since lunch and by the time the server came over at 9:30pm I was ready to eat her arm off. Lucky for us all, I didn't have to do that because, well, I'm sure that would raise some red flags for Brian's friends. And also, I don't think I'd do well in prison (although I DO look good in orange). For dinner I chose the Spicy Coconut Chicken Soup and Brian had the Spicy Duck. It was very good, but mine wasn't filling enough for someone who hadn't eaten all day. I should have gotten the Pad Thai, which was my second choice. Regardless, it was delicious and I thoroughly enjoyed talking with Brian's friends and getting to know them.

Next up was a place called Beauty Bar. It's a very cool, small bar which used to be a beauty salon. When you walk in you are instantly hit with the smell of nail polish. That's because along the wall there are manicurists who, for $10, will paint your nails for you! Conceptually I think this is a cool idea, but knowing how packed the place was and how many times I bumped into people, I can't imagine actually doing this. Come to think of it, I think I might check the clothes I was wearing to be sure there's no polish from a passerby!

There's a room in the back which had a DJ and a big open space for dancing (and a 2nd bar, I believe) but we didn't make it in there. Instead we sat in the space between the main bar and the dance space chatting with his friends while sipping our drinks. I thoroughly enjoyed chatting with everyone and am so glad I finally got to meet some of the people I've heard about for so long!

Beauty Bar
Beauty Bar Photo Credit


Me: We have to take that again-I look a little crazy!"

Brian: You ARE a little crazy!

(Look at how sweet he looks!!)

Take 2! Better...


Though we initially had plans to end the night at a certain bar from Brian's past, it ended up that we were unable to do so. For me, it wasn't a total bust though because I got to end my night with a slice of pizza. It was good, but, if I'm to be honest...it wasn't NY pizza. It tasted like the kind of pizza you get at Whole Foods. Still good but not what I thought it would be. Nonetheless, I was happy to have a little more food in my belly and was looking forward to getting some rest because we had another big day on Sunday.

The good rest part? It didn't really happen as we were sharing a twin bed. We did OK though and luckily we like each other :). But it was a restless night for me, at least and when I got up at 7:15am, I felt like I got hit with a truck! We slowly showered, got dressed and made our way upstate to my Nana's surprise birthday party.

It was highly successful-she had no idea.

It's always a good time hanging out with the hoards of cousins I have from NY. We're all so different but also a little the same...mostly because we're all a little crazy which, no doubt, is a direct result of who our Nana is! :) We laughed and joked a lot, told some stories and reflected on our childhoods. It did get a little sad now and then when we were remembering my Papa, but overall, it was a fantastic day.

B1 had to drive the first leg....I had a little too much wine during Nana's after party and I didn't feel up for driving. Luckily it wore off in time for me to take the 2nd leg of the ride. We didn't get home until 9:30-ish and by 10:30 we were in bed and probably sleeping by 10:40! Very, very rare for us both!!

And now I've come full circle, to how tired I was this morning...but it's all worth it, adventuring with my B1.

Oh-and the "Little Cheese" part of the title? I found this on my lunch break:

Snack sized pieces of gourmet cheese from Whole Foods! This one was a 3 year old Gouda which was rather sharp and creamy. It went very well with the strawberries I brought for lunch today. Any cheese delights me...but little cheese REALLY makes me happy.

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