I like to think of myself as a hardy traveler, one who can jump on a red-eye flight so I don’t “waste a day” of vacation being in transit. Passenger by night, tourist by day right? I think one of the most important lessons I learned on my trip to New York City was that I’m actually getting too old for that. I took a hellish 1am flight from LA to Charlotte with a two hour layover…it was brutal, and not made any better by the fact that the two girls sitting next to me were watching videos without headphones and trying to get drunk for the first two hours of the flight. I landed in Newark and had to take the train to NYC, lugging my big suitcase, exhausted and shocked by how cold it was (it was only 45 on that first day with piercing wind). I had brilliantly decided not to bring my coat because the weather was supposed to be in the 60s for most of my trip and I thought I could just suck it up on the few cold days…wow, Marla.
I stepped out of the train station in Manhattan to find a taxi and was instantly in awe. I’ve never seen a city in so much motion and I’ve never felt so tiny being completely surrounded by skyscrapers. I couldn’t focus on ground level; I was hypnotized by the soaring cityscape. It felt like being in a movie, just standing still and everything else moving around me. Somehow my travel bud Olivia and I (remember Olivia?) finally got ourselves into a taxi to meet up with my dear friend with whom we were staying.
In dire need of a nap and horribly underdressed for the weather, I ended up sleeping in my friend’s apartment until she got off of work. I was kind of disappointed with myself for not using to day to tourist around, but it was worth it. She got home and we caught up with wine, Indian food delivery and ice cream, and I was actually competent…which would NOT have been the case if I had forced myself to stay awake.
I woke up the next morning rested and ready to venture outside, beginning with Outpost in Brooklyn for oatmeal and a latte (my favorite café morning combo). By the time I was energized and ready to take on the big city, I had already been in NYC for 24 hours. I’m definitely not as hardy as I used to be.