My parents finally visited this weekend, after living in NYC for a year and a half. Neither of them had really been to NYC before (my Mom twice, my Dad NEVER!!!!! Can you believe it? And he's actually decently well-traveled), so I think a lack of familiarity, work obligations, cost (since they had to stay in a hotel instead of with me), and my brother still living at home were factors that prevented them from visiting me. Actually, it was probably my brother, since they booked a ticket within a month of him leaving. Ha. Oh! and the boyfriend. They definitely wanted to investigate once they found out I had a boyfriend. As if I weren't reason enough!!
They stayed at The Benjamin Hotel on 50th and Lex, which turned out to be a great choice since it's right by the E and the 456 trains. I really wanted them to stay somewhere nice, and thanks to priceline it was super affordable...though they had to upgrade when I wanted to stay with them, oops, so that might have brought them back to normal.
We did so much. Thursday they flew in and we had dinner, with my boyfriend, as Sip Sak. The food was incredible - I had some kind of lamb thing over smoked eggplant puree, incredible appetizers, and turkish wine, and they got to meet Eric.
I stayed with them that night, and Friday we went to Murray's Bagels (by me) for breakfast, then I showed them my apartment. I had talked it down so much, they were like "This is SO nice!" I was hoping they would think it was worse since I am sick of how small it is, but whatever.
Then we went through Chelsea Market, got some Amy's Bread and a Wich Craft brownie, and after I wanted to show them the High Line, which is this park built on an elevated train track. Turns out it's not open yet, but we went up to the third floor of The Standard, which is very chic and modern and has these weird art elevators that make it seem like you're going to heaven or hell depending on if you're going up or down, to take a look at what it will be like.
It was a bit misty, and we walked south on the Hudson River Park, through Battery Park City, literally all the way to the World Trade Center. This is like a few miles. A long walk. My Dad took all these pictures, because whatever, he wanted to do it, then we did more Wall Street looking around, then hopped a cab to Chinatown to eat at Joe's Shanghai. On the way there, we were stuck behind Prince Harry's motorcade! (I'm foreshadowing here, because the Prince will return.)
Had some delicious soup dumplings, some coconut water from the street, then we headed back to the hotel for a bit, had a glass of wine, then grabbed some halal cart before we saw In the Heights. After the play, I was starving, not having eaten much halal, so we got some banana pudding from Magnolia Bakery (I have already researched the recipe to make myself) and some pizza. Night!
Saturday, we met Eric for brunch at Shopsin's, this famous place, now in Essex Market, for its grumpy chef and huge menu with unlikely pairings. I had some coconut pancakes with an egg burrito that had cranberry salsa on top (sooo good). I also ate some of Eric's pancakes. The slutty cakes (pumpkin, peanut butter, pistachios, cinnamon) were outrageously good, as were there cinnamon raisin apple pancakes that appeared to have been soaked in cinnamon sugar liquid until they were plump and delicious.
Eric played tour guide for awhile, showing them around. My feet were hurting and I was super hot in my tight jeans (both ways, I assure you), so we went back to Eric's apartment. I did NOT really want my parents coming up there, both because I think Eric has bachelor pad shabbiness (though an incredible, spacious apartment, balcony, and view. I am so tough), and because I have a lot of stuff around there and didn't care for the allusion to sex (we don't talk that much about that stuff, though my mother did make veiled references until I finally had to tell her I am on birth control. Lawd.). However, he sent them to the East River Park first, we had a bit of cleanup/alone time, and all was well.
Then we decided to go to Governor's Island. There's a free ferry, you can walk around, nice little views. We go. There's a huge backup, and tons of police, so my Mom asks why. Well, we're right by a heliport and President Obama is coming this evening. Wow.
Then we just make the ferry, and get off, to find out there's a polo match going on for Prince Harry's charity. We watch the Prince play some polo, then walk around the blisteringly hot island. As we're going around the back, we run into tons of VIPs (I later find out Madonna, Kate Hudson, et al were there, but I didn't see them in their hats and sunglasses). Nice.
We go to Agave in the Village for dinner, and there are all these NYPD helicopters around. The Obamas (who were dining at Blue Hill before going to Joe Turner's Come and Gone). Walk around the West Village, drowsy from margaritas, sleep.
Sunday! Go to a diner, EJ's Luncheonette, on the Upper West Side, then meander around Central Park for hours. Go on a tour. Central Park is BIG! I get a little cranky from the heat and my feet hurt. Resolve to go to the gym more often.
We go back to the hotel for some wine, then head down to Otto for dinner. I had this delicious shaved fennel pizza that I ordered, then some puttanesca and a margherita that my parents ordered. And some amazing gelato for dessert. My parents walked me back to my apartment, where I slept that night, and I did some heavy relaxing. I met them the next day for lunch, we went to Baogette for some banh mis (I think I converted them. Try them! Spicy Vietnamese sandwiches. They are amazing).
I very much enjoyed doing nothing Monday night.