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Posts Tagged ‘NYC’

Of late, I’ve been blue or maybe gray is a better color description;  Not because I went to see Fifty Shades of Gray, but rather because there are so many things going on in my life.  Work has been troublesome and the immediate future in that arena doesn’t look very promising.  I seem to be in a time and place where if it can go wrong, it does AND it always costs $$$.

Then there’s the fact that it’s February and it’s been so cold here for so long that I can’t imagine we are actually going to have Spring next month.  The gray days of January and February are bad enough but when you live in The City, it can be downright depressing.  Imagine walking to walk when the wind is blowing and the temperature is in single digits.  Then imagine how it is to walk on sidewalks slick with frozen slush or cross streets where each corner is either a black pool or frozen lumps worn slippery by the hundreds of people walking on them.  OK, OK, enough already right?  NO! When the sun comes out and it does, the slick stuff melts and is black slush, something you would never ever walk in and the edges of the sidewalks are lined with piles of snow in Fifty Shades of Gray and Black and are embedded with trash.  This is NOT a criticism of the Sanitation Workers, because for 3 weeks alternate side parking rules have been suspended which means the streets have not been cleaned!

So now that I’ve painted the ugliest picture of NYC and haven’t begun to complain about the forced hot air heat that every apartment has, I will.   I hate the dry hot air which makes my hair fly around with electricity and my face crack, not to mention getting a bloody nose as all my nasal passages dry out.  Yuk that’s awful!! SORRY!

BUT THEN, there’s this…We left the apartment about 5:00 this evening and took the bus up to Fifth Avenue and walked over the Metropolitan Museum.  This IS a world treasure, there’s no doubt about it.  I take it way too much for granted and don’t visit the museum often enough.  We had in mind a few exhibits we wanted to see but of course walking through the museum on your way to one hall or another you are surrounded by art, sculpture, etchings, and artifacts from around the world!  Literally if you have never been to the MET, then you really can’t imagine  how big it is, how chock full of treasures it is and how accessible it is!  We marveled at Byzantine carvings, admired paintings by Jackson Pollack, Seurat, Pissaro, Van Gogh and more AND we hadn’t even gotten to the exhibits. 

We saw drawings and sketches by Paul Cezanne and the complete set of his portraits of Madame Cezanne.  Hortense Fiquet, (Madame Cezanne) was Cezanne’s favorite model, who he eventually married to legitimize his bastard son.  She posed for 29 portraits, never moving an inch and not talking since Paul Cezanne preferred his models to be silent.  This is the first time that the set of paintings known as Madame Cezanne in a Red Chair have ever been exhibited all together and in fact, they have never been together since they left Cezanne’s studio.  Then we were off to see the Caravaggio’s or at least that’s what we thought.  The exhibit was not exactly paintings done by him, it was more about the origin and evolution of musical instruments popular in the time of Caravaggio. However, we did get to view priceless Tintoretto’s and other Italian Renaissance painters.  The paintings were very religious and very beautiful.

We saved the best for last and headed to the American Wing where the fabulous mural, America Today painted by Thomas Hart Benton was displayed.  It’s a breath-taking,  wall-to-wall panorama of life in America in the 1920’s. The palette is rich in primary colors as befitting the strength of the muscled boxers, workers and the whole work itself.  Below is just one of the ten panels that make up this epic work.

AMERICA TODAY

AMERICA TODAY

But before we went into the room that housed these magnificent panels, we spent considerable time viewing his preliminary sketches, his models which were drawings and even small paintings of future sections of the mural-to-be.  There were practice sketches of hands in different poses, of complicated parts of machinery cobbled together and of many characters who would appear in the mural.  This is where I saw beautiful, sexy women just oozing femininity and each with the sparkle of life in the 20’s in their eyes.  They reminded me of my friend, the gorgeous Grace Gotham.  She exudes sensuality when she performs and was surely born in this era before her more recent incarnation.  Her burlesque performances are stellar with her as the shining star;  lithe, graceful and luscious, Grace could have been one of Benton’s models!  But don’t take my word for it, you can see for yourself at http://www.gracegotham.com.   Meet Grace!

Grace Gotham

Grace Gotham

 

 

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Ambrose Lightship, South Street Seaport, Manha...

Ambrose Lightship, South Street Seaport, Manhattan, New York City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Thursday’s Top Ten

The following is a sardonic bordering on sarcastic list of things we New Yorkers feel the need to explain to the visitors, tourists and out of towers who venture into our metropolis!   This list goes beyond my byline of “Oops I bit my tongue in chic”;  I gleaned this information from Thrillst NY. Some things just have to be ‘splained!

  1. We don’t call it “The Big Apple”, “New York” or even “NYC” – It’s The City.
  2. Everybody jaywalks – Go ahead, don’t be afraid, chances are you won’t get hit.
  3. The Italian food in Little Italy sucks – Probably because hardly any Italians live there.
  4. Cabbies don’t take advantage of tourists – They take advantage of ANYONE who doesn’t pay attention.  The answer to “Do you want to take the FDR”? is always NO.
  5. YES, it’s always this loud and NO it doesn’t bother us – For the love of God, stop covering your ears every time a subway screeches or an ambulance goes by.
  6. You have to walk faster than that – We don’t have highways, we have sidewalks.  Would you stop dead in the middle of the Interstate to take a photo of some random tall building? No? Then sweet Jesus don’t do it here.
  7. South Street Seaport is totally irrelevant – We don’t set foot on this anachronistic hell-dock unless we’re going to Beekman’s Beer Garden.  Even then we go in the back entrance to avoid the crowds of people taking photos of the man o’ war.
  8. The streets are short, the avenues are long and it’s a grid – Unless you’re in the West Village; that place is essentially a maze.
  9. That annoying TV in the back of the cab – You can turn it off, and if the credit card swipe below it doesn’t work, use the one above it.
  10. Our bars close at 4 am every nightNone of this 1 am or 2 am nonsense or “4 am on Saturdays only” – We booze it up every night till 4 am and still make it to brunch then next day.

A shout-out to Gail, who is my constant resource for  funny, weird, bizarre, interesting, and informative articles.  This one from Thrillist was a doozy!

 

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If two weeks ago when I last wrote a blog, I thought it would be two weeks before I sat down at the keyboard again, I would have said, “Oh no, not me, I’m committed to blogging”.  Well so what happened?  I’d say one part life happened, one part physic overload and one part computer game junkieness.   I just made up that last word.

Work has been feeling like 24/7 and I have to get a handle on that.  I’m letting a client/customer run my life and she/he has me jumping through hoops.  Of course I’ve had enough therapy to know that can only happen with my permission.  Oh those intelligent sounding, pragmatic answers are just so…..what?  I don’t know, just so true? hard to do? Yup all of that and more.

And then the worst thing is this new word game that I started to play on Facebook.  If Steven Covey could only see me now, spending hours in Quadrant 4 – time wasting and my numbing!  My Scrabble addicition was bad enough, Lexolous was getting intense and now this – Word Wonder or something like that.   All I can say is it’s a good thing I can’t seem to go any further without paying, something I refuse to do.  Hey even us junkies have our limits!

Lots of things have been going wrong too lately – time-consuming and annoying.  We’re not talking life or death here, just annoyances that seem to piggyback on one another.  Here’s how Monday went:  My intention was to pack up the cottage as quickly as possible and get back to NYC because I knew I wouldn’t be around on Tuesday all day.  That’s a perfect example of my neurotic guilt and sense of obligation.  Gee do you really have to be at someone’s beck and call every day, all day?  OK, well I hustled around and got food packed, windows closed and locked while Peter filled the bird feeders and gave the squirrels fresh corn.  Now for the record, I did strongly suggest we put the car into the garage on Sunday night as well as drop off some stuff with Jane at the hotel.  Didn’t happen – now it’s Monday morning and I’m short-tempered and curt barking orders as to what needs to be done to get this show on the road!   BAD KARMA!  The Metropolitan would not start…. Are you frigging kidding me? We drove it Saturday night to Spring Lake and back. Now it’s raining and it won’t start.  Of course I didn’t know it wouldn’t start because I had already left for the garage to pick up a picnic basket I was lending to a friend in Manhattan and to put away the booster seat we had to purchase when Finley was with us for 3 days!

I realized that the basket would not fit in the car the way it was packed now and you know I didn’t pack it that way!  So I unloaded the whole car and re-arranged everything and put in the picnic basket.  Still raining and where is he anyway?  I called his cell phone and he informs me the car won’t start!  Ay yii yi!  I lock up the garage and zoom back.  He’ll have to call our auto mechanic who just installed a new starter last week.  That’s right, last week.  We’re leaving it out in front of the house and the mechanic will see to it – we leave.  I realize that I’m wearing soaking wet shoes.  Why am I not wearing my usual flip-flops?  Well because I was thinking ahead and wanted these espadrilles to be in NYC so I could wear them on the bus tomorrow to West Hampton.  Do all espadrilles have roped soles?

BAD TRAVEL KARMA is an all day thing I guess, because by Monday evening when I have to get myself to East 50th Street to meet my Mah Jongg group, things are still going badly.  I left the apartment in plenty of time with the intention of taking the cross town bus to 2nd Ave and then switching to the 2nd Ave local to go south.  But as I walked out of my building, I saw the cross town bus heading up the block – I had just missed it.  I waited a while and no bus came.  So I walked to 2nd Ave and one block south to the bus stop and waited and waited and waited.  Not one but two Select (express) buses went by but no local. I kept looking at the time and said to myself “take a cab”.  I hailed the cab down and just as I was about to open the door I realized that I did not bring my handbag with me and had only my Mah Jongg money and no credit cards.  “Sorry” I say to the driver, “I made a mistake”.  This being New York, he’s probably used to a lot of crazy people.  Still no bus.  The Select bus stops two blocks north so I take a long look up the avenue and don’t see any buses coming and decide to walk north to that bus stop.  Walking as fast as I can in my flip-flops I scurry northward.  As I am approaching the block, I see that a local bus has stopped there and if you can picture a woman of a certain age and somewhat overweight trying to run in flip flops down the busy block then you are probably laughing your you know what off right now!  The bus pulls away.  Buses wait for no man or woman either by the way!  The express and local stops are both located on this block.  I’m sure another bus of either type will appear on the horizon soon.  WRONG! Almost 10 minutes later, an express bus pulls up, I get on and thank God for the air-conditioning because I had clearly worked myself up into a physical and mental frenzy.  

Yes I made it there, late of course and missed the first round, oh well no big deal.  However,  bad luck follows you around stuck to your shoe like a piece of toilet paper.  I sit down and start to play.  My hand looks pretty good.  I’m not going to go into the strategies of Mah Jongg here but you must always be careful not to throw someone else’s winning tile.  Because if you do you have to pay double.  Well you know where this is going…I threw the tile.  Now I had to pay her double her hand.  Oh but she was also East and therefore she gets doubled again, and Oh she threw doubles so she gets doubled again!  And Oh the bettor bet on her so she also gets the same amount of money.  When I tell you I lost $8 in one round, you can believe I was ready to pack it in for the night!  I actually had to owe the bettor $2 and pay it off as I won other hands!  

I sure hope tomorrow is much less uneventful!

English: blue espadrille from Los Espadrilles.com

Espadrilles ARE NOT water proof

May the craks and bams be with you!

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NYC Subway 6 Train

NYC Subway 6 Train Otherwise Known As The Green Line.

 

Oy has it been a crazy past couple of days.  I left the shore on Sunday (a glorious sunny day I might add) to return to New York City by train so I could conduct an open house at one of my listings.  I gave myself just enough time with a very narrow margin for error but that wasn’t because I like to live on the edge, rather, I was dependent on the NJ Transit system to get home.

 

I made it to the train on time in New Jersey and as I sped away from the station, I reached into my handbag for my cell phone and uh oh it was still at the shore.  I decided not to panic, well there was nothing to be done anyway.  My concerns were not phone calls as much as possible emails and texts from brokers trying to register customers or worse from my seller who would not know why I was incommunicado at this time.

 

Things were moving along nicely;  the connecting train at Long Branch was there and so we took off on time.  I had my Kindle with me and not much else since the plan was that Peter and our grandson return sometime on Monday.  In the meantime, Cash’s mom arrived in NJ to spend some beach time with her father and son.  They got the sun and the sand and I got the Open House   😦Just outside of Secaucus the train stopped and I started to fidget.  THIS is exactly what I was afraid of!  What if? I don’t even have a cell phone to contact either the seller or a colleague to pinch hit for me. And since we are all now SO DEPENDENT on our electronic devices, I don’t even know what time it is because I don’t have a watch on!

 

The train eventually got moving and we slid into the tunnel of Penn Station and I prayed I would be able to find a rest room quickly and get on the subway to head uptown.  Oh but I forgot to tell you, I didn’t have my Metro card;  No, that was still in my apartment!  After a quick trip to the ladies’ room and boy did I ever luck out!  The line coming in as I was leaving would have given me the figurative heart attack.

 

I headed for the red line – Peter hates it when I refer to the subway lines by their color dots;  he sometimes refers to the IRT, whatever that is lol lol.  Really, I’m from Connecticut, to me the colors make sense.  Anyway, in order to get on the subway I had to buy a Metro card because I left mine in my apartment (like I somehow forgot I planned on taking the train back on Sunday). The line to the ticket booth was about 20 deep.  There were two lines to the two machines and each was LONG and filled with tourists.  I figure they were tourists because three quarters of the line did NOT know how to use the machine.  I tried to practice some form of total Zen zoning and not tap my foot too much.  When finally it was my turn at the screen don’t you know the cursed hunk of no good metal and electronics would not let me purchase a Single Ride.  Ever mindful of the crowd behind me I just said, “what the f__?” and bought a $10.00 card.  I have a senior citizen discount Metro card and am totally annoyed that I had to buy this card so I could get home and work.

 

I thought I should take a cab across town on 86th St but since everything else was going  askew and downhill, of cou

 

English: An Old sign for the IRT at the Wall S...

 An Old sign for the IRT at the Wall Street 2/3 stop. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

rse there were no cabs.  I wondered if they were on strike.  A bus came along and I hopped on and at least had the gratification and satisfaction of getting a transfer for my $10.00 splurge.  The bus made pretty good time or so I thought because as you know, I had no watch or phone.  I dashed across the street and flew into my building only to come face to face with the seller who was as surprised to see me as I was her.   “Did I get her text?”  Uh no, and I have to explain how I left my phone in NJ.  And by the way, please excuse me I have to run upstairs, change my clothes, brush my hair and teeth and get to your apartment if you please.

 

Peter on the other hand and in the other state had his daughter and grandson to entertain.  He’s not really used to being a solo host.  Well, at least they had great weather and spent two days at the beach.  They were supposed to come home on Monday which turned into Monday night and then he called to ask what did I think about them spending another night at the cottage and he would return during the day on Tuesday.  I had appointments to show my listing on Tuesday but our cat, Nicky also had an appointment at the Vet’s on Tuesday.  It was going to be grueling round trip to bring guests back to NYC, take the cat to the veterinarian and when I finished doing the laundry he brought back, we would return to NJ.  In between appointments and his return I even managed to go to Starbucks and get a pedicure.  He looked like he had been doing battle for two days.

 

Back and forth, up and down and around and around we go.

 

 

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Today is a very hot and humid day in The City!  I know because so far today I have walked about 25 blocks, in TEVA wedge-hi flip flops and carrying what I call the typical NYC handbag.  Today it only had 2 folders in it and no Kindle (thank God).  I could itemize the numerous objects and necessities in my pocketbook but I bet there are thousands of woman all over the country carrying the same home away from home – what if I need…. bag!  Although many of them have it on the front seat while they drive around and are not carrying it in the asphalt jungle. Let’s just say, it’s always heavy and on a day like today, unwelcomely heavy.  With each block, my mood darkened.  Peter wanted to know when I would stop complaining about how hot I was and my response was….well that remark is probably better left unsaid in print. I arrived home (finally), stripped off my clothes and hopped into the shower.  What a fabulous feeling.

If you are wondering what that first paragraph has to do with the title of this blog, it’s actually a precursor to why sometimes living here gets you down, beats you up, changes your outlook on life and makes you wish it was Friday so you could run not walk to your weekend getaway.

So how do you know when you’ve lived in New York City too long?

Dinner – hitting up your slice place at 1:00am

PIZZA!!!

PIZZA!!!

2. Nothing fills you with more rage than getting on a crowded subway car and hearing, “It’s showtime”

3. $12 cocktails and $20 yoga classes seem normal now!

4.You’ve considered moving into your office to save on rent since you spend so much time there.

5. You’ve Seamlessed lunch and dinner in the same day  and not given a shit.

Who cooks anymore?

Who cooks anymore?

6. In the summer you consider the wind coming from an approaching subway to be a nice breeze.

7. You’ve flipped off a tourist bus.

WHAT are they looking at?

WHAT are they looking at?

8. When you visit the suburbs and try to sleep, the silence scares you.

9. You wear ear buds to the grocery store.

"Stayin' Alive," - I Need Endive

“Stayin’ Alive,” – I Need Endive

10. You walk faster than most people run.

Thanks Gail for sending me this hysterical web link.

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English: Albert Einstein, official 1921 Nobel ...

Albert Einstein

Seriously, yes I am! I know I have been MIA for a couple of weeks and one might think the worst;  like “oh dear, she must be really sick” or “oh my things must be going badly for her right now”…

Well I’m here to say NOT SO!  I have been busy, busy, busy.  And of course I am over-committed so unlike Einstein, for some reason I don’t have enough hours in the day to do all that I want to do and I have pushed off writing a blog.  On the other hand since I am a staunch believer in the fact that people do what they want to do all the time, I may have to try to be more honest with myself and my readers.  

It’s true I have been working and the fruits of those labors came true when I was able to list a property for sale in my building.  It took a few visits and a lot of time spent staging it but it was well worth it.  I put it on the market on Friday and the first showings and Open House were on Sunday and on Monday we had one offer, on Tuesday we two offers, on Wednesday we had three offers. On Thursday I l left town to fulfill my other business obligation.  It’s not very easy to serve two masters in two different states even if they are adjacent.

Someone will surely suffer or both and neither will be happy and then I’ll be out on both accounts.  So this weekend I have to settle the issue and am dreading the conversation.  I don’t want to let anyone down, I commit and I stay with it, I take responsibility to a degree that actually is self-destructive by putting other people’s needs above my own.  This time my own level of stress has been so great that I am going to push through my anxiety and confront the issue.  So many factors to consider.

So busy with two jobs, running between two states and all the rest of life’s miseries still in place, although I haven’t written any blogs in two weeks, I have found time to play Scrabble, I did get a pedicure, I did have breakfast with a friend, I did play one game of Mah Jongg and I did go out one night to dinner and a show with friends and I did go to the doctor’s one day.   Well that’s the truth dear readers and I did all that rather than try to write a blog.  

Did I have writer’s block? No, my friend Gail has sent me several articles I have saved because I want to use the material.  There was one reason I postponed and postponed and it began on Mother’s Day.  I wanted to write a loving blog in memory of my mother but instead we were out and then back in the car to NYC and then back into a grinding routine.  My birthday followed shortly after and I wanted to write about this particular birthday and my mother.  I started many times to formulate it in my head.  I knew it was going to be heavy and so I kept procrastinating.  Memorial Day came and went and we had company and we went to a barbeque and we went out to dinner and then we worked here in NJ and then home again-still the blog haunts me.  

I may have to try to write it soon, I think it will be cathartic.

This weekend is for seeing a first cousin who I haven’t seen since she was little and I have no idea of how many years have passed. She and another first cousin who I have never met – And this is on my mother’s side….the unwritten blog is sending me a message. But doesn’t it know I have to work tonight, tomorrow, tomorrow night and Sunday and then drive back to NYC really early Monday so I can go to work there?  Have mercy!

It happens to be pouring rain outside this morning which is making the whole yard a deep bright green.  I glanced out the window and am wondering where the newspaper is, perhaps it floated away.  

Have a delightful day, I’ll be back.

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There are way too many cars in NYC to begin with, not to mention people so just about anything can cause major gridlock and delays.  When the UN General Assembly is in session, not only do the dignitaries, ambassadors, consuls et al, amass – the protestors turn out in full force.  And what is being protested? EVERYTHING!  From regimes to policy, humanitarianism to health conditions and anything in between.  And then came Moving Planet!  Adding vegans, anti-frackers, climate-change concerns, anti-fossil fuel and green proponents.  As seen through the camera lens:

UN protests, General Assembly, NYC

MULLAHS

UN General Assembly, NYC, Palestine statehood

Protesting Palestine Statehood

China, Tibet, General Assembly

China versus Tibet

Sri Lanka, General Assembly, UN

Sri Lanka

 

UN General Assembly

Africa

UN General Assembly

Climate Control

General Assembly

Lebanon

Stop Fracking

No Drilling

All photos courtesy of Murray Head

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The posts I thought I was going to do did not get done, quite obviously.  And it’s not because I brushed 9/11 aside.  Quite the contrary, Sunday night turned out to be the most emotional 9/11 I’ve had since the 9/11.

I went to a memorial service held in the Great Auditorium and within minutes I was in tears.  Between the solemnity of the occasion, the bagpipers, the flags, the orchestra, the two choirs and the speakers, not to mention the building, I was a wreck.

And why I didn’t think to bring tissues, I don’t know.  The speakers were all great but I have to say I was definitely partial to the Baptist Minister, former Secretary of State New Jersey.  He was quite the preacher man!

As I promised, I would post any memories sent in to me about 9/11/01, please read Heather’s account of that dreadful day, my generation’s day of infamy.

We had left Maine early on September 10th and were planning to stop in NYC to visit our daughter the next day.  We stopped overnight at a hotel in southern Connecticut to allow ourselves a relaxed time the next morning before heading into the city for our lunch date.  As we were getting dressed, my cell phone rang and it was our oldest son calling from his then home in Hatboro, PA asking if we were watching TV.  We had not been but the moment we turned it on, the only images we saw were the scenes of the first plane and then the second plane smashing into the World Trade Center buildings and the attendant misery as a stunned world watched.  Everybody was speechless and most of the hotel guests gathered in the lobby to watch the large TV and perhaps share the comfort of being around others

   Needless to say, we did not go into Manhattan that day but rather, several hours later, skirted around and headed south on the NJ Turnpike.  We were one of the only cars on that road.  The plumes of ash and smoke were clearly visible from the NJ side.  The rest stops were deserted and nearly all food outlets within them were shuttered.  The northbound traffic consisted of fire trucks and emergency vehicles ONLY.  It was a surreal spectacle and a surreal experience.
   To this day, whenever we pass along the NJ Turnpike,  we look over toward Manhattan, and we remember the tragedy of that horrific day.
I’ve blogged about Capt. Timothy Stackpole, whose memorial bracelet I ‘ve  been wearing for 10 years, my recent encounters with a fellow blogger and with Michele, two people who actually knew Captain Stackpole and went to his wake and funeral.  And last year I did a blog about 9/11 Then and Now.  See link below.

https://pbenjay.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=2914&action=edit

I featured the photo of the empty shoes which so poignantly spoke to the loss of so lives and how the left behind living try to cope when there’s no one there to fill those shoes.  That memorial display was in New Jersey and in New York City…

empty chairs, Bryant Park

A man remembers his father

photo by Murray Head

Timmy Stackpole, 9-11, memorial bracelet

Memorial bracelet - 10 Years

And Gail sent me this link to one man’s tribute to the wife he lost in The World Trade Center:


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Goodnight is right!!! Oh dear God, hurricane fever has been here for days and NOW, Irene is almost here.

It all started for me on Thursday. Peter arrived late in the afternoon and I was still at the Tea Room finishing up and we decided to go to the store and pick up a few Finley items such as whole milk and orange juice without pulp.  Once I arrived at Wegman’s two things became instantly apparent;  Finley probably wasn’t coming to the Jersey Shore and Hurricane Irene was on her way – have you ever been in a major grocery store and seen all the bread shelves EMPTY?? I mean EMPTY!  We did get milk because after all, milk is PERISHABLE and everyone knows you are supposed to stock up on non-perishable foods.  I think all of Monmouth County is planning on eating Pb & J’s all weekend!!!

And so it began….no news except hurricane news, talk, talk, talk, only about the impending storm and plans A, B, and C formulated in each household.  Who was staying and who was going, that was the really BIG QUESTION.  My thoughts immediately were to stay and I  think at that point I wasn’t really comprehending the breadth and depth of what was to come.  I said, “well the apartment is safe and the cottage is vulnerable, so I need to be here to protect it.”  Peter thought about this and agreed.  We really didn’t think we would be in real danger, just that house might be in some and perhaps if we were here, we could prevent and/or protect.  The thought of being in NYC and watching the happenings and wondering what was happening to my sweet La Vie en Rose was quite disconcerting, so I said, “We’re staying”.  Thursday night seems much like any other night.  Peter even went to get me ice cream.

Friday dawned sunny and bright and the buzz was everywhere.  Some neighbors immediately started hauling in porch furniture and tying down everything else.  Mmmmm should we go after all?  Several conversations later, it was decided that Finley would be better off in NYC with her Daddy and her baby sister.  Chiara HAD to go to the middle of New Jersey to attend a wedding on Saturday;  she is a Bridesmaid.   I thought she would never get off “the Island” which was probably evacuating itself westward to the City.  But she made it, dropped them off and kept on going.  I hope for the bride’s sake some people come to this wedding.

I don’t hold out much hope though because the NEWS which was now broadcasting 24/7 alternated between Governor Christie declaring a State of Emergency on THURSDAY and Mayor Bloomberg saying the City was in the cross hairs of the storm and therefore, the subway and bus systems would be shut down, the news just got more dire by the hour.

By Friday afternoon, Peter and I had packed up the back yard furniture, put away the umbrella, turned the glass top table upside down, removed bird feeders, and with bungee cords anchored the trash cans and some chairs.  I moved the upstairs porch furniture into the guest room making my tiny cottage just that much more smaller.  Things were beginning to feel weird!

Ocean grove, police tape. beach is closed

Beach is CLOSED

Let’s go to the beach!  It was 4:00 the sun was still somewhat high in the sky so we took off to get a good long look-see at our beach not knowing when we would see it next or in what condition it would be.  There was police tape across the  entrances to the beach so we walked a ways to Bradley Beach and got onto the beach there.  We took our chairs and our books and sat down near the water’s edge for about an hour or so enjoying the last of the sunshine, sharing the experience with about 5 other people as far as the eye could see.  The tide was extraordinarily high which was the result of new moon.   Well clearly we were illegal and I heard later on that if you got caught going into the water, you could get a $500 fine.  Of course Peter had to push the envelope a bit and get his bathing suit wet which caused the young ticket taker on the boardwalk to come rushing down to inform us that the “main lifeguard” sent him down to tell us we could NOT be in the water.   Why didn’t someone tell the surfers that?  As we left the beach, two young surfer dudes, boards under arms and a young girl passed us on their way to the shore.  The young girl looked at Peter and shook her head and rolled her eyes.  Governor Christie told everybody to get off the beach in Asbury Park, they had enough tan, now get out!

Governor of New Jersey

Christie says "Get Off The Beach"

 

Ocean Grove, beach is closed

From Here to Asbury Park

Friday night we had dinner out because it would probably be our last good meal once the power went out and surely it will, they say.  And in New York City, Broadway was shut down, the subways system cut back and Battery Park City under mandatory evacuation!  We received numerous calls imploring us to return to NYC and truly we vacillated so many times I couldn’t tell you what the number was, but something has kept us here.  It didn’t help that the beach town north of us and two towns to the south of us were under mandatory evacuation, and the Governor reversed the highways so you could only leave and not come, they even made the tolls free.   There is a bit of foolhardy adventurism at play, the swagger that comes from having toughed it out and not the least, the need to be here to protect the homestead.  At 11:30pm an email alert came through from Neptune Township informing us that Broadway from Ocean to Pilgrim Pathway was under mandatory evacuation: WOW we are two houses in from Pilgrim Pathway.  I sure hope the storm surge knows where it is supposed to stop.  Tomorrow is another day and Irene is expected to hit the Jersey Shore in the early evening. 

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Yay late last night the plow came up our side of Broadway, a sign that perhaps life outside of these four walls could start again.  I heard the truck and plow make a least two more passes.  I was hoping that the plow had not pushed a new wall of snow up against the car.  I mean let’s not forget that this cleared parking space cost me $ 40.

We had ventured out yesterday in hopes of putting Peter on the train back to NYC and his version of civilization.  Since the majority of my readers don’t have a sense of the roads and towns around us, I can’t relate the horror story of that adventure.  Let me just say that we left at 1:15pm and got home again at 4:15pm AND Peter never got near the train station!!! State highways remained un-plowed and abandoned cars littered whatever pathway we tried to take.  AND to add to the stress of this total misadventure, we were in an accident.   Yup, an ambulance side-swiped our car and we were STOPPED on the side of the road.  Well that all happened in Day 3 and this is supposed to be about Day 4.

Today Peter decided to dig a path to the shed.  Why? Well it wasn’t to retrieve the 50 lbs of salt he had stashed in there, and it wasn’t to get the folding shovel that is supposed to be in the car at this time of the year but for some irresponsible reason was still in the shed!!  NO, he wanted to get at the bird seed so he could at least toss some seed on the snow so that our little feathered friends and our furry little squirrels would have some sustenance!  Digging his way to the bird feeder would be another day – the drifts are just too high.

Ocean GRove, La Vie en Rose, shed, blizzard, snow removal

Going to the Birds!

Ocean Grove, bird seed, La Vie en Rose, bird feeder, blizzard

A Banquet for the Birds

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