Friday, June 15, 2012

Sunglasses & Fedoras, it's all part of NYC...

Because it's Little Italy, Chinatown, Brooklyn... BECAUSE IT NYC!

Favorite things about NYC:

Art around every corner... & it's not always in a museum
Cute and quante stores
Unique restaurants
Trixs to know about the city
You can be or do anything you want to do

So yesterday was pretty fun for me :) and it didn't rain, so all the better.

What I recommend:

1. Get your bike from an actual bike shop. Why? They no more about bikes then you do... and on top of that, I had no idea you could get so in-depth with bikes. Get battery operated flashers, don't just depend on reflectors. You'll also want a water bottle holder. Another thing, get a bike from your local bike dealer. He or she will be familiar with the area you'll be in, and therefore can recommend what will be best for you.

Here's some helpful brochures. Ian at the bike shop was really helpful and suggested them for me. The one on the left is a map for all bike lanes in NYC, and the one on the right is a guide. I didn't know what the rules were, and he gave this to me :)

So yesterday I got to spend the day in NYC with a friend who actually knows the area, and it was a blast.

What I learned...

When you decide to visit the Met, you don't have to pay full price for admission. Did you know that? Yea, just tell them that you want to make a donation... however much you'd like... and that's all you pay. How awesome is that! Admission is around $25, so it makes a difference especially if you plan on attending several times in one month. So don't be shy :)

Got to see the Schiaparelli and Prada exhibit:
Incredible! I recommend it fashion divas. It's so fascinating to see how similar the two designers were. 

After the exhibit, had dinner at this nookish type restaurant. 

Had this yummy salad that had grilled goat cheese... delicious. 

I wish I could tell you what parts I enjoy the most about the city, but there's just too much to choose from. St. Marks was great, East Village is fun... it's all fun! I've decided that each weekend i'll do my best to dissect an area. Try to get familiar with it and find out what I like the most... and then I can pass it on to you :)

Remember you can't have dinner without dessert. How about some Big Gay Ice Cram?! LOL Can you believe it? That is actually the name of an ice cream shop. It was definitely different, but fun. There's even a unicorn painted on the wall.

 Now I don't remember what it's called, but I had a hot fudge sundae with nuts. This wasn't just any traditional sunday, it had SPICY hot fudge with PUMPKIN seeds.

Cheesy photo of me! lol

 I loved it, and would get it again. Now if your wondering, "how was the hot fudge spicy?" It had cayenne pepper in it. It was definitely different. Did you ever see that movie Chocolat with Johnny Depp?

Well this sundae should be enjoyed with that movie... then again maybe a bag of chocolate??? Ok, I know that's so wrong. Don't do the bag of chocolate.

After that yummy and fun experience, on to the next!

So the nice thing about having a friend show you around the city, is that they know things. Like fun facts! Did you know that flat lighting allows little to no shadows. Apparently building were lined up in a curvature way so that it allows flat lighting in the city. Although I'm not a 100% sure if that was applied to the entire city or not??? Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong. 

So were walking in Little Italy, and I see a purse store that has a sale sign in it... naturally I suggest that we go in. Were about to leave, when suddenly were confronted with rows of sunglasses. Actually they're more like cheap and ugly sunglasses, but that was the beauty of this entire collection. Right then and there you have this choice; you can either pass up these sunglasses, or soak up the moment to be ridiculous. Let's be ridiculous.

Mission accomplished!

Let the walking continue...

Everywhere around you are restaurants. People stand outside and continuously ask you "your ready?" "dinner?" "are you hungry?" It's insane. It's like those people that stand in the mall and ask if you want lotion... but imagine 5 of them standing in a line repetitively asking you. Kinda annoying :) So in the middle of these restaurants are your typical souvenir shops, and suddenly were approached with fedoras...

I love fedoras. They look good.

So we figure since were wearing these goofy sunglasses, why not a fedora to add to it? Honestly with the way people dress in NYC, I think we just blended in even more.

So we came this far, whats a little further? Chinatown's right next door...

Personally I like Little Italy more, but here's some pretty cool looking food we found:

After Chinatown we decided to go see the bull, but got distracted with seeing the Brooklyn bridge

From the Brooklyn Bridge

That's the Manhattan Bridge

NYC is behind me!

How great is that view

Get these apps!

1. Time Out New York
2. MTA Helper
3. City Transit

A city that never sleeps!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Do cats really land on their feet?...

So this blog is a little off the beaten path from what I usually talk about, but I didn't sleep at all last night cause of it... and I would like some input.

First though, just a little recap of my latest adventure... sorry no pics today :(

Like I've told you before I live in Yonkers. Where this town ends and begin, I have no clue??? Everything just merges together. You could send me to a certain part of this town, and I'll assume I'm still in Yonkers. Of course we all know this'll change with the more I become familiar with it.

Anyhow, my roommate was sweet enough to show me a few things about the area, but first you need to understand that she is a fitness instructor.... she teaches Yoga, Zumba, Cycling, etc... the woman's in shape. So yesterday we made it a point to go cycling at 9. The plan was to leave here, cycle together to her gig, and while doing so she would point out some things about the city... like where to go, whats good, whats where, etc. Remember how I told you I got a bicycle? Well I've been really hesitant to use it here. Bike lanes don't exist everywhere, so in my area I'm riding right next to cars, busses, and trucks... which kinda freaks me out. Remember, you can't let fear reign in your life. You must concur those fears.

9am comes around and I'm ready to go. Had to make sure my outfit was cute of course... remember I'm not a biker. We get out the front door, and whats the first thing we do? Go up a hill. Right then and there, I knew I had it coming to me. Wrong outfit. I'm pretty sure that if I lose anything in my hips or waist, it'll go strait to my thighs.

So we're peddling, mostly up hill :( and I can feel the sweat collect. Plus, its humid up here so that's even worse cause now I feel all sticky. Once we hit Broadway, your pretty much going down, or straight. It's when we got to Riverdale (which is part of the Bronx, but its a well to do area... very cute) that I died. I'm pretty sure I peddled up a s 45 degree slope. It was pathetic and I'm glad it wasn't on video lol. You know that numb feeling you get in your legs from working so hard? That was me, I couldn't feel my legs when I got off the bike to walk, so who knows what I looked like walking. As far as I was concerned I had noodles for legs.

What better way to get aquatinted with your bike... or cycling in the city. After that adventure, peddling next to vehicles didn't bother me. Do yourself a favor and fix up your bike by purchasing these things:

1. Flashers
2. Bell
3. Water bottle holder

*Everyone uses their cell phones today while driving, so anything that makes the biker more noticeable is worth investing in. Also, when you go to your local bike shop, ask for a map so that you can see what part of the city has bike lanes :)

Riverdale is very cute and quant. There's a college, lots of cute eateries, little shops, you know the whole NY picturesque scene. Wouldn't mind living there one bit. Next time I'll take pics, cause there's def some place I wanna try.

Later on after I changed into workout clothes, as soon as I get my bike outside it starts to sprinkle. Since I'm not comfortable cycling in the rain, I decide to walk. *Always carry an umbrella. Time to go get food. So I get to the grocery store, purchase the things I need, as soon as I get outside it's raining cats and dogs. Fortunately the bus is right there, so i'll just catch a ride home. As I was walking through the rain it made me wonder, what am I going to do when it's like this and I'm on my way to work??? Should I buy rain boots? A raincoat? Sometimes you can't prepare, you have to go through the experience... then again maybe that's the artist in me speaking ;)

Now, on to the main topic. Do cat's really land on their feet? This question has only been brought up by a series of events.

My cat's name is Zeke. He's very chill, but he has his moments. He can be very obnoxious when he talks to much, when he gets hyper and wants to play, and when he decides to roam wherever he likes and knocks over everything in his path. He's also an explorer of heights. May no height go unexplored! He's a very social animal. So last night at about 2, I head to bed. As soon as I lay down, I hear this banging sound. Because I know how Zeke is, I have to go make sure he's not doing anything he's not suppose too. Around here we like to keep the windows open in our apt. They do have screen protectors on them, so that the cats can't get out, but they can still sit on the ledge. Well Zeke's on the ledge pawing at the corner of the screen, so now the screen is partially opening. Don't forget, we live on the 6 floor... so that made me wonder, if he fell would he land on his feet? I seriously doubt it.

So now I have to shut the window until I figure out what to do. Ok, so I close the window but now he's roaming the apt being annoying. He comes into my room and suddenly I hear this sound. I look at my window (which is partially open and it does have a window unit in it) and he's hanging from the top of the window, trying to... get out??? Literally my cat is hanging on the window! This shouldn't surprise me, but it does. He's that kind of cat, VERY curious. If your wondering how he got like that, well this is how: he jumps onto my worktable, hops on the window unit, and jumps for the top of the window. It's the part of the window you pull, to open or close, this is where Zeke had his paws. And his back feet were on their way up the window, so he's climbing up the window. In my mind he's climbing up and out the window. Between the first window event and this one, its now about 3:45. Now I have both windows closed, maybe I can finally go to sleep. Wrong again. Now he's jumping up on my window unit looking at the very top of the widow... and I know he's contemplating jumping. In fact he's looking at the window right now... So now every time I heard him jump on my window unit I spray him with the water bottle. Well then every time I heard a noise in the apt, I had to get up and see what it was. It was then and there I realized how glad I am not to be a mom, and should I give him up for adoption or take him to SPCA??? So I did a little research and found this clever suggestion:

Maybe I can do something clever with it. The main reason I like it though is because it'll still allow the air to flow. If ya'll have any other suggestions let me know.

Hoping for a full nights rest tonight.

Monday, June 11, 2012

This ain't Texas...

Toto, I don't think we're in Kansas anymore.

Zoo York is an understatement. Zoo's are organized and separated. This place is more like Chaotic New York, but then again that doesn't flow as nicely and there for not nearly as many tshirts would be sold... if any.

Where I live: Yonkers, NY.

Today I got to do something I've always wanted to do... go jogging in the city. I really do love the city, and if I ever come back to Texas it'll be for these reasons:

1. I want space
2. Tired of paying for so much
3. Sick of seeing trash everywhere I look... this really is a dirty city.

But seriously, it's so gorgeous up here it'll take a miracle to get me bk in Tx.

Now for pictures...

There is green everywhere. My apt is on the left.

This is what I thought to myself today... Ever wonder why the bad guy (in movies) doesn't realize he's being watched or followed? I think I know why, there's cars lined up the street everywhere. No wonder they never notice... I wouldn't notice.

Where I live it's very hilly... is that a word? Anyhow, everything is built on a hill. You walk up and down to your destination, resulting in a very good workout. Today after I went jogging, I actually had sweat on my back... and i never sweat, but its simply because of all the hills I had to jog up.

bus map

This is at the end of my street. I actually live next to a park that has tons of trails in it. 

An abandoned building

Trash, this is no surprise. Who knows how long it's been there. I imagine it'll stay there until someone puts it in the trash or a homeless person comes and adopts it.

The 1890's called and said they want their shoe back

The street I walk up to get to broadway

This is the same street that takes you into Times Square

Remember those trails I was telling you about, there's also lots of entrances here as well. At about 5 this is usually full of people visiting or kids playing outside. You'll see kids practicing baseball and football. There's also lots of BBQing going on.

Tons and tons of apartments. You'll always see window units, open windows, and clothes hanging to dry. You also always see people outside... Especially guys and yea the guys look shady, but don't be quick to judge. Be cautious, but don't be quick to judge.  

A trail to take to go biking, jogging, walking, whichever you like.

Dog walker, haven't really seen that many.

Incase you were curious, gas is about $3.80 and up in the city.

No I haven't tried Jolly Joe Snack... it doesn't look that enticing.

Another park, you'll see several of these.

It's amazing how much people stay outside. Reading, walking, jogging, biking, visiting, laying out... its a very common thing to do. Might I add it was absolutely gorgeous today. I don't know how warm it got... 80's maybe, but the breeze in the air made it even better... Yea I know, be jealous ;)

I really liked this house. It has so much character, unfortunately bad location. Do you see the window units?

It wasn't open today but I'll definitely go back and check it out.

Van Cortlandt Park, is incredible. They have a golf course, tennis courts, swimming area, play ground, trails to go walking and biking on.

It's funny, you have this gorgeous park on the left side of the street and then on the right side it could be these trashy little stores


Entrance to the subway

When I first saw this, I thought it was a penitentiary... lol... wrong. It's part of the park, their basketball courts... City life.

The subway up top

It amazes me, there's city life amongst this forrest.

Garden Gourmet. Love this grocery store! It's the typical kind you see in movies staring Meg Ryan. Very small on the inside but tons of things to choose from, like: cheese, olives, bagels, coffee, etc... It was then and there that I decided I needed to marry someone who likes to cook. Going in that grocery store was like trying to find Waldo. I had no idea where to start??? They had all of these interesting things you wanna try as well... which by the way reminds me, surprisingly I actually don't care about going to "fancy" restaurants, I would much rather cook a unique dish at home then go out.

Everything I just showed you was within 3 miles of my home. Tomorrow at 9 I'll be biking around the city, so I will do my best to show you some more great parts of the city.