Tag Archives: subways

Dear Diary, Come ON!!!!

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Drove to Connecticut. Dropped the kids off to a concert. Went to the mall. Went back to get the kids and found a great parking spot at the closed gas station on the corner. But…I had told the kids I would pick them up in the overflow parking lot. I texted them. They didn’t answer. So…I went to the over flow parking lot to wait in case they didn’t get my text. Kids came and then it took over half an hour to get out of the parking lot. That’s annoying. But that was only the beginning.

This is what we looked like when we saw the hookers and guns....

This is what we looked like when we saw the hookers and guns….

The next day we drove to the train station to take the train into NYC. We drove to the closest station. There were drug dealers and hookers with guns just walking around outside the station so we decided to go to the next town over and get the train there. Good thinking. Using the gps on my phone we got lost. Ended up in a very nice suburban area with pretty homes and manicured lawns…no hookers with guns but no train station either. So, I use my daughter’s phone’s gps. We wind up in a very rural area still with nice homes still no hookers but still no train station. One of the kids calls the train station that we are trying so hard to get to and asks for the exact address. The other kid uses her phone’s gps and eventually we get there. It is a nice train station….no hookers, no drug dealers and no guns. We hop on the train (after I double check with everyone else on the platform that we are indeed headed to Grand Central). General consensus was yes, that is where the train is headed. Good. We were finally on the right track (Don’t roll your eyes at me…that was a perfect joke).

We get on and start going…but slowly..very slowly…the conductor comes on and apologizes for going so slowly but there has been a fatality on the tracks at the station we are headed toward so they are trying to clean that up…that sounds about right. I mean for me, on vacation…of course there has been a fatality on the tracks. Horribly sad. But we get past the station, the train and the mood picks up.

Going soooooo slowly...

Going soooooo slowly…

We get to Grand Central and I am so motion sick from not eating and riding backwards and reading I was about to vomit. We find me a pretzel and coke and walk on my brotha…to the subway. Now, here is how I take the subway. I figure out the train I need using the exact wrong app, I go down, swipe my metro card…walk down some more stairs, look around, over-think it, go back upstairs, exit the subway, rethink it, go back down, re-swipe my metro card (which will only let me swipe it 3 extra times after the first 3 times because it knows I am an idiot and it doesn’t want me anywhere near the subway) so I make one of the kids sneak me in thru the door with alarms going off like I just won the lottery or something. Take the subway to the hotel.

Hotel only sleeps three. That’s what they think but I have a blow up bed in my suitcase! So, we put on a big act about our friend meeting us here and going up to the room to get ready as if anyone cared….threw on our fancy clothes and went back to the subway to get to the restaurant. This time we hopped on the subway, on the correct train but apparently going the wrong way. We simply needed to go about 5 blocks…instead we went to Brooklyn, got off, went up the stairs, down the stairs and back on the subway to get to 5 blocks from where we originally started. Had dinner. It was so lovely and perfect and wonderful. We started walking towards the theater to see Rocky the Musical and I made it about a block and a half in my Coach high heeled shoes and that was it for me. We ducked into a tourist trap and bought 12 dollar flip flops. And it was raining which was making my hair ginormous. So, I started out pretty cute, but riding to Brooklyn by accident, the mist frizzing my hair and flip flops in an evening dress….yeah…well, this about sums up my life. We go to the show and it is FANTASTIC best show I have seen in many years!!!

Yes, that's me on Broadway in flip flops...my friend Dave would be so grossed out. But a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

Yes, that’s me on Broadway in flip flops…my friend Dave would be so grossed out. But a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.

Leave the show, get autographs, the kids see that skeevey guy I don’t like and run over to get his autograph…that takes forever but I entertain myself by taking pictures of the NYPD…There is definitely something about a man in a uniform…..we get lost trying to find the subway. We find it, take it successfully and go up to the hotel room in shifts so we don’t let on that there are actually 4 of us not 3. The room is so small, the blow up bed just fits on the floor next to the single bed. When you sit down on the toilet the sink is in your lap and your feet are in the shower. It was small. Went to sleep.

Woke up dead tired exhausted.Took a handsome cab ride around Central Parksort of a downer because our guy only told one joke.  Oh Bloomberg, you outlawed humor too?

At the "Friends" fountain...the 2 groups before us posed nicely...we almost lost the oldest backwards into the fountain

At the “Friends” fountain…the 2 groups before us posed nicely…we almost lost the oldest backwards into the fountain

Took the subway with minimal screw upedness to the fashion district because we love it there. Then got lost looking for the subway we needed to get to Grand Central. We needed the “S” train. Finally find the “S” train go down the stairs (carrying 4 heavy suit cases and a blow up bed) swipe metro, go thru and down another few flights of stairs and there is a bench where we sit and wait for the S train. For 45 minutes we wait for the S train. While we were sitting there waiting I saw my friend from home…how random…I screamed her name and waved and we laughed and off she went and there we sat. We asked the lady next to us about the S train, she replied something about stairs and a board. We didn’t know what she was talking about. We asked a guy and he also mentioned something about stairs and S being a shuttle not a train. Ok wize guy. Whatever you say. We finally made the kid go push the button on the intercom on the wall and ask where and when to catch the S train. Pretty sure that button wasn’t really connected to anything so she was just standing there looking at the wall….which we found hysterical.

I know, we were literally maybe 2 blocks from Grand Central. We could have just walked. We could have actually paid attention to the people who tried valiantly to help us. Instead, we sat there for almost an hour discussing when the S train would get there. Then one of us had a lightbulb moment and said “Maybe we should just go look up those stairs…just to see what is up there” Ok, what the hell, we ain’t got nuthin to lose. And as we reach the top step, there sits the S train with doors wide open a light shining down and angels singing (there were no angels…there was a violin player tho) We got on, sat down and laughed until we cried. You had to have been there but it was so damn funny! 3 people told us to our face, in English, that we needed to go up the stairs and all 3 times we nodded and thanked them and then turned back around and said “I have no idea what they are trying to tell me”

Literally one stop…total of maybe 1 minute and we get off at Grand Central. We get some food, use the rest room, check the board and see our train is leaving in 10 minutes from track 18. We walk over to track 18 and sit on our luggage and wait for the train. We are the only people ON the platform…hhmmm…..After about 15 minutes we decide we should ask someone. We ask the Sneezy, the guy who has been there as long as we have but is waiting up near the entrance. He says he is waiting for his friend coming in from CT so yes, we are in the right spot. We wait another 10 minutes and decide to ask someone with a little more authority. Ya know…some one in an orange vest.  They said yes yes, we are in the right place for the train to CT. Okkkkkk,….20 minutes later a train guy comes down in his cart and says we are NOT in the right place that there was a fatality on the tracks and a fire so this train is not coming and we need to be over on track 24 and that train is leaving right now. Isn’t this the perfect ending to the perfect beginning? I really never knew train riding was so deadly. We haul ass over to track 24 laughing all the way, not because of the fatality stuff but because really….this doesn’t happen to other people ever. Just us. We walk the whole length of the train and finally find seats. Settle in. All is well.

Until……….until the conductor calls the West Haven stop. Then, we are suddenly all confused about if we parked at West Haven or New Haven… I decide we parked at  West Haven but just as I jump up and run for the door…the train pulls away from the platform. Now at this point, the kids start freaking out. I wasn’t. It was dumb, but so far I haven’t gotten anywhere the smart way so no biggie. We get off at the New Haven station which is very beautiful….we get some food, we get back on the train and ride for about 3 minutes and get off at West Haven. Get in my car and proceed to get lost going home because gps is something Satan himself controls.

Overall, it was a very fun trip with TONS of laughs. Memories made, mission accomplished.

Our Super Model pose....nailed it.

Our Super Model pose….nailed it.

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I See Famous People

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Kenny G...he's alot shorter in person....

I am not a star chaser. I don’t watch tabloid TV or read the magazines at the check out.I do not get celebrity crushes. I mean, I will if I have to. If I am pressured by friends to pick a celeb I LOVE I can. But it isn’t going to be your average Brad or Leo. But that doesn’t mean I don’t LOVE to play 6 Degrees….ya know, where you know someone who knows someone who knows someone famous. I LOVE doing that. I also LOVE to spot “celebrities” on the street.

ESPECIALLY when I visit New York City. That is my favorite all time game. I find people who could pass for celebrities and I get all excited and tell who ever is with me “LOOK!!! There’s Richard Dreyfuss!!!” or “Aretha Franklin on your left!!!” or “Captain Hook coming through!!!!”. When I first started doing this I was with a group of my students who I had convinced that we were sitting next to Leonardo DiCaprio in costume for his next big role as a homeless guy. As we exited the subway I turned around and yelled to my kids “It’s the guy from American Idol!!!” “WHERE” they yelled excitedly….”OVER THERE NEXT TO TINA TURNER!!!!” “WHO’S TINA TURNER????” they yelled back which about killed me!! I HAD to think of some new references if I was going to be traveling with these young kids…

That trip with my students I spotted Johnny Depp, L.L. Cool J (who I do seem to spot alot when I am in NY), Eminem, Harry Belafonte and Geena Davis. Now, did I really see these stars or did I just see people who kind of resembled these stars I will never know. I never approach famous people. I don’t want their autograph, I don’t really care at all to break the illusion that these famous people are more than human. They live on the movie screen or tv and so I will keep them at arms length. I don’t want to know that they smell funny, have blisters or runny noses. I like my celebrities pristine and at a distance. That is why I don’t read or watch their life story on A&E. None of my business. But if they are going to put themselves on the same street as me I am going to make sure who ever is with me knows.

My students eventually caught on to my silly game. And they started pointing out celebrities. That was funny!! They were pointing out characters from movies like “There’s Forrest Gump!!” or “There’s Leighton Meester!!!” I had no idea who that was… some girl who likes gossiping or something…but the kids seemed excited.

But the following summer, I was in the city with my BFF. We were lost in Brooklyn after me playing my “I see famous people” game all day and her not playing along. We were having a good time being lost at almost midnight looking for a club where a friend was having a record release party, when all of the sudden, these two incredibly handsome guys on bikes were in our path. We decided to ask these beautiful men if they know where this club is. And as we approach, I realize that one of the men is Murrary Bartlett who played Cyrus Foley on my soap Guiding Light!!!! I grab my BFF and whisper “he’s on my soap!!!” Ofcourse she doesn’t believe me. And these guys were so incredibly attractive that she couldn’t even look directly at them. Me, I was flirting shamelessly with Cyrus, I mean Murrary. They gave us better directions and we went on our way. But I did turn around and look him deep in the eye (as the music swelled and the camera came in for a tight shot) and said “I LOVED you on the show….” To which he replied “Aw, thanks!!!” and I turned back around and ran right into a street lamp. I walked it off though, it was all ok.

I didn’t take a picture with him or get his autograph because I am not one of THOSE people. My BFF did NOT believe me because all the way from the Bronx to Brooklyn I had seen every single star I could think of to name (and a few I couldn’t…I would just point and say “FAMOUS PERSON!!!!”) She refused to believe me. And after we got home and I googled him and showed her…she still didn’t believe me because she never looked at them because she was terrified if she did she would be overcome with carnal desire and embarrass herself. HOW FRUSTRATING!!! I finally have a meaningful conversation with an actual famous person (shut up…soap operas totally count) and no one was going to believe me!!!

I told my students and they were less than impressed. Sometimes it is so hard to be me.

I just went to the city with my other BFF and my 16 year old and her BFF. We all played the game together. I saw Mia Farrow and Janet Jackson and Soupy Sails and Bruce Willis. It was AWESOME!!!!! Kenny G played Happy Birthday for my 16 year old and Enrique Iglesias was our waiter (he was kind of an ass though, but nice eye candy) I kept referring to him as Ricky Martin.

There is no reason why NY can’t be filled with famous people. There is no reason why I can’t point them out. You should too. It makes waiting in line for hours to get lunch or tickets or a subway much more tolerable. They are there, just waiting for you to spot them. Just don’t get all weird about it. Point and whisper, do NOT approach and ruin the illusion. And if one of the celebrities gives you directions when you are lost, watch out for lamp posts.