July is going to be a big month for all of us, with the four of us being in as many as three different states at once. Tristan and Zoe will be staying together, to have each other's backs, Jennifer will be up in Vermont at grad school, and I will be back in North Carolina most of the time, doing what I do there, albeit with more quiet.
So the trip started with Jennifer, Tristan, Zoe, and Rabin driving in the Corolla up to PA on Friday, June 30th. They left around 6:45 and got there around 4pm. I left after work, around 3:30, and got to the folks' house at 11:30. Both rides were uneventful, just the way we like them.
Saturday morning, it was off to NYC, on what is now becoming a regular event for us. In only 2:45, we went from the folks' to Jordan's apartment in Brooklyn. After a quick tour of the apartment and the roof, we headed out on foot. Making our way through Prospect Park (Brooklyn's version of Central Park, but smaller and less crowded), we got lunch at a diner called something like Grecian Corner. Most of the people in there were somehow enthralled watching England lose to Portugal in the World Cup. Tristan asked the guy at the table next to us; "Who are the good guys, the white [shirted] guys or the red guys?" The guy, who apparently was British, responded, "The white guys."
After lunch, Jordan took us to a nearby store, that was right up Tristan's alley; the Brooklyn Superhero Supply Store. It had everything a superhero could need, from costuming, to utility belt items, to special chemicals. Tristan took the oportunity to test drive a new cape, on their state of the art cape tester.
From there it was back on the kids' favorite ride: the New York Subway System. Wanting to see something new this trip, we went to Chinatown. Jordan does a lot of construction/renovation work here, so he knows his way around. We were on a hunt for a new Chinese dress for Zoe, and something for Tristan to wear at his various Chinese performances at school. We didn't find a dress for Zoe, but she did find a fan she liked. Tristan got a kung-fu jacket and a mask. During the purchase, Tristan was having a conversation with the shopkeeper - in Mandarin. Not bad for a 7-year-old white boy from North Carolina.
We met Peony, Jordan's girlfriend. She's a 26-year-old graphic designer from Alexandria, VA, according to her MySpace profile. She found us while Jordan was haggling over some kung-fu slippers. It was a warm day, and we were parched from our travels, so we made our way to the Green Tea Cafe on Mott street. They had a huge tea menu, including bubble tea, milk, tea, hot tea, and snacks. Tristan ordered for all of us in Chinese once again, and other than forgetting to order his own drink, did a great job. I had the coconut bubble tea, and it was awesome.
It was a quick walk to Little Italy from Chinatown, so we went there on a gelato quest. We found our gelato (Lemon, lemon, pineapple and coconut) and some cannoli, and bought a sandwich (prosciutto, mozarella, and roasted peppers) for later, from the Italian food center we shopped at last year. There were plenty of cute Italian-ish girls, standing on the street outside of the restaurants, beckoning hungry travelers to imbibe in wonderful pasta dishes. I couldn't help thinking that one of them would make a fine wife for Jennifer's brother Jonas.
Back on to the favorite ride to head uptown.
Tristan likes to feign sleeping on the subway for some reason. Zoe had a new best friend, once again.
We saw Rockefeller Center and Radio City, where Jennifer used to make annual treks as a child. But here was the store for Zoe: The American Girl Store. This place is nuts. You can get a doll that looks generally like you, buy matching outfits for the doll and yourself, have a day at the salon, go to a show and dinner, etc. One could drop some serious coin there, but fortunately, we left with our disposible income intact, opting instead for a soft pretzel outside the Disney store, where Zoe did get a Stitch stuffed animal as her "New York Souvenir".
Needing to finally sit down, we took respite on a bench an Central Park South, where Zoe performed her "Fan Dance" that she swears she learned in school.
And Tristan performed some sort of ad hoc kung-fu jacket and scary mask dance.(that's the south east corner of Central Park just behind Tristan, in case you're curious)
From there, it was back to Brooklyn to call it a day, and eat our fine sandwhich, not before T and Z had their picture taken by some apropos grafiti on the roof of Jordan's building.
I ♥ DA HOOD
BK 4 LIFE
Post Script, Sunday, 2 July: Had to get bagels and bialys on the way out of Brooklyn. Bergen Bagel on Flatbush Ave. did not disappoint. A bialy for Jennifer, an Everything bagel with jalapeno cream cheese for me, a cinnamon raisin with strawberry cream cheese for Zoe, and a cranberry muffin for Tristan.
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