Happy Birthday Sara! I'm pretty sure we sang happy birthday to you at 12:01 am on this day. What a wonderful place to celebrate your 23rd birthday and with such great friends. :) I can't wait to celebrate my 23rd birthday next year! We took a little bit of time in the morning to get ready, grabbed some Starbucks (for them) and some Jamba Juice (for me) and hopped onto the Uptown Loop. Today we were exploring Central Park! Central Park is giant. There is so much to do and see in Central Park that you can't possibly do it all on foot in the amount of time we had so we checked out a map to see some of the highlights. There's a castle in Central Park... yes, a castle. It sits right by Shakespeare's theater which was also pretty cool. There's even a zoo in Central Park (which Kim Kardashian happened to be at while we were there but we didn't see her). We stopped by the Alice in Wonderland statue and the giant pond they race miniature boats on.
When we had had our fill of Central Park, Sara, Jenni and I made a mad dash to Dylan's Candy Bar (owned by Ralph Lauren's daughter) for some sweet treats! Project Runway filmed an episode where they made clothes using only items from this candy store. It was a really fun candy shop and they had some really tasty treats.
Time for dinner at Angelos in Little Italy. Being from Des Moines, you very VERY rarely have to worry about traffic. So, like an out of towner, we completely didn't even think about what traffic would be like in downtown NYC... at 5 pm... Yeah, we were REAL late getting to Angelo's for dinner which meant that Jenni and I had to eat as fast as humanly possible in order to get back in a cab and make it to Times Square for our show. It was not the greatest of planning on our part. It was a disaster actually and in hindsight, I definitely would have done things differently. For one, I would have gone to a show on a different night. Two: I would have not gotten into a cab at 6 pm only to go 4 blocks and jump out, hand the driver a $20 and have him give me a fake $10 bill back and me not realize it until I tried to use it in the subway. Three: I would have not worn heels.
Anyways... Jenni and I got to the theater with 4 minutes to spare. Seriously, I couldn't even believe what had just transpired. BUT, we were excited to see the show because we got tickets to see... SPIDERMAN! There had been a lot of press about this show regarding accidents on set, how much it had cost to build/make, and the actual graphics/stunts of the show so we were excited to see it. I was really glad we got tickets to such an authentic to New York show. It was entertaining and Spiderman was pretty impressive with all his tricks. We had a good time.
After the show, we met back up with Sara and Allison in Times Square for dessert. We shared Cheesecake and a giant chocolate chip cookie from Roxys while we sat on the Times Square steps and people-watched. We even participated in what was somewhat of a flash mob to the Macarena. IT was a great way to end our last night in New York City!
Uptown Loop!!! Finally, we decided to change things up a bit from our regular downtown loop excursion and take a ride on the uptown tour bus. We spent the morning riding around the Upper East and West side (hello Gossip Girl), gallivanting through Strawberry Fields, taking a drive through Harlem errr Spanish Harlem (queue Sara singing Marc Anthony), making a pit stop at FAO Schwartz to see the BIG piano, before getting off the bus in Central Park.
We eventually wondered our way over to Bryant Park. The next time I visit NYC in the summer, I’m spending some time in Bryan Park. It’s so cute and lovely and they were playing a movie at dusk that we would have loved to stay for but unfortunately time would not allow. Instead, we found ourselves in the largest department store ever… MACYS! It was giant, overwhelming, and crazy in there.
For the evening we took a night tour through the city and over to Brooklyn. This was another highlight and probably one of my absolute favorite things we did. Going over the Manhattan bridge on a double decker bus in the dark looking out over the water at the city, it was AMAZING!! Seriously, I am pretty sure I had tears in my eyes realizing that I was finally visiting New York and seeing the city that I had always imagined. It was one of my favorite moments. On our way back into the city, we saw another tour bus that was being guided by one of our past tour guides. We all waived like idiots, he remembered us and announced it to his tour bus, and Allison was embarrassed. Haha. Maybe she wasn’t, I can’t remember, but I have a feeling she probably was embarrassed by us. We had such a great night on the night tour.
Another way to see the city all lit up at night is to go on top of one of the giant skyscrapers… so that’s what we did. We went to Top of the Rock! SO COOL! I was really glad that we went to the top of the Rock because then you could see the Empire State Building. Sara stayed inside and looked out the window while Allison, Jenni, and I went all the way to the top. It was beautiful, Allison took a lovely picture of a random couple on her phone, and we had a minor security scare but everything else was great. This was probably one of my favorite days as a whole in NYC.