The hiatus was longer than I expected

We apologize, we truly meant to restart the blog as soon as the wedding was over, but the next week or so was a bit of a whirlwind and so here we are, married for 18 days and still haven’t updated the blog.  We are slackers.  In our defense, we are also honeymooners, so there are other things occupying our–or at least my–mind(s).

For those of you who missed the cliff hanger at the end of last season; here is a quick recap….During our trip to Hawaii, Sue was foolish enough to agree to marry me.  We spent much of the summer planning the wedding.

We did the deed and got hitched on October 5th. Put the date in your calendar–yes, we expect cards every year.  The following week, we took a four-day weekend and went to New York.  The trip was planned well before the wedding, as we were allocated

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Gratuitous Bruce pic

Springsteen on Broadway tickets.  Once again, for those of you who did not watch last season….these were the second set of seats we bought as we went to see the show last December.

We flew out on Thursday morning.  When we arrived it was a bit chilly, overcast with a little rain.  We grabbed an Lyft to our hotel, the Hilton Garden Inn/Tribeca.  Once we had checked in, we began wandering.  Our first ramble took us south to the Financial District.  We stopped on the way for lunch at Picasso’s Pizza.  Nothing special just great pizza–Yum!  After lunch we walked down to a store called 21st Century.  Someone Sue knows recommended it, and since we didn’t have any real destination in mind, we went there.  Sue perused and tried on a few things, but nothing caught her fancy.  We wandered out towards City Hall (a bit accidentally, as we were trying to go back up town).  When we got near Pace University, it started to rain pretty hard, so we hopped onto the subway and took it back to our hotel.  We had a quick rest then got ready for dinner with my uncle who lives in Midtown.  After dinner, we were still wide awake, so we caught a late night set at Smalls jazz club.

The piano at Smalls

Our tickets for Springsteen were for Friday night.  We planned to spend the day wandering in Central Park, then perhaps visit the Frick Collection.  However, fate, greed, or good luck intervened. At some point early in September we discussed the price of Springsteen tickets on StubHub.  I asked Sue at what price she would be willing to part with ours.  She gave me an unreasonably high number and said let’s try and sell them for that.  We listed them for sale and lo and behold while waiting for the subway on the way to Central Park, the tickets sold!  Sue did a magnificent happy dance on the platform, and then we hopped the train. We spent the next few hours giggly about our good fortune and looking for something to do that night.  We had walked through Central Park, bought tickets to a Broadway play called “The Nap“, and decided to grab lunch (by the way it was now about 3 p.m.).  We got back on the subway and went back downtown to Sweet Chick, a chicken and waffle place we had visited last December.  Lunch was fabulous, but we were stuffed, so we decided to walk back to Midtown to see the play–a quick, 3-mile wander.  The show was a farce set in Sheffield, England, about a snooker match that someone is trying to fix. It was very funny, and we thoroughly enjoyed it.

Saturday we had no fixed plan.  We woke up, and started with a long wander south.  Then we turned uptown and visited the future showroom of one of my clients.  As we were walking down the street, voila!, we found a national park.  On E. 20th is the birthplace of Teddy Roosevelt.   Of course we had to visit.  It was pretty cool.  They have a guided tour through the main rooms and the ranger gives a really informative talk about Teddy and his family.   We had dinner with one of Sue’s friends at a very nice Italian place. After dinner, Sue and I decided to go to Cocoa Bar for dessert.  After some really yummy desserts, we walked back to the hotel.

Sunday was our last day in New York.  Once again, we did not really have a plan, other than to continue our wanders.  We saw a notice for a pickle festival.  For no other reason than it seemed funny, we walked over to it.  It was  pickle stand next to pickle stand for 4 blocks (and person jammed up aimg_20181013_182109250_hdrgainst person for said blocks).  I had a sour pickle on a stick….Yum, but somewhat interesting for a late breakfast.  From there we visited the New Museum and then International Center for Photography.  Both were interesting, but I preferred the photography.  By now, we were hungry so we headed back into Chinatown and found a nice little noodle place.  It was great, but I do not recall its name.  We walked back to the hotel to grab our bags and head to the airport when we received a notice that our flight was delayed a couple of hours.  So, we relaxed in the hotel lobby, went for a little walk, had a drink and then it was time go.  We grabbed a Lyft to the airport and flew home.

Great weekend, great honeymoon.




Caveat Emptor (Basic Economy)

Steven and I are planning a trip to New York that coincidentally turned into our honeymoon. We got Springsteen on Broadway tickets before we got engaged, but now the trip is the weekend after the wedding, perfect timing–I get to marry Steven and see Bruce.

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Gratuitous Bruce pic

We started hunting for hotels and airfare in earnest yesterday. We went to Expedia, which seems to have slightly different hotels than Travelocity or Orbitz (which are really the same thing). All excited, we picked a hotel in Tribeca. We went for neighborhood, not luxury so it’s the Hilton Garden Inn for us. Then we picked flights. Nothing is cheap when you’re talking about NY, but we thought we did well.

I don’t like sitting in the back of the plane. I feel airsick back there, so I immediately went to pick seats. Now, I realize that I fly cattle class and I won’t be anywhere near the front of the plane, but as I went to the Delta and United web sites, I came to the sinking realization that I had purchased tickets that did not allow me to choose a seat or even bring a full-size carry-on onto the plane.

“Steven,” I shrieked in horror. “You’re not going to believe this!!”

“Are they BASIC ECONOMY????” he shrieked back. “Cancel them NOW. I’m not going to fly basic economy!!!”

Luckily, I am obsessed with seat selection and we had 24 hours to cancel. I did so within 24 minutes. Hotel reservation intact, we went back and found flights that allowed us to pick from the minimal free choices left (two middle seats one behind the other on the way out and an aisle for Steven and a middle seat a few rows back on the return). Universe aligned again.

I noticed afterwards that Expedia does say what type of fare you are purchasing right underneath the flight listings. The airline sites I checked allow you to choose whether to list basic economy fares or not. Sometimes that choice is under advanced options, sometimes it’s elsewhere. Be careful unless you are so budget conscious that you are flying without anything but a backpack and don’t mind sitting in the last few rows of the plane. The basic economy fares from O’Hare to LaGuardia were about $50 cheaper, but then checking a bag costs $25. I get that for some people it might be worth $25 to choose basic economy. I’m not one of them and certainly not for my “honeymoon.”