SO, I've now officially spent my first night in The Bronx!
After a GREAT night at "In The Heights" which was delightful - and I got to meet a closing cast member of RENT!!!!!!!! we set off for The Bronx.
I arrived early in the morning (well early for the 10am riser that is me!) because apparently we had "plans in the city." I had a small glimmer of hope when I was wondering what this surprise might be but I dared not believe it!
So I get to the Bronx at 9am and remember...wait, my cousin rides a massive red motorbike!!!
I can tell you right now...there is NOTHING like doing 90 on an American freeway heading right into central Manhattan right by the water - on the back of a massive red motorbike!
THAT is an experience I will never forget!
And hopefully be repeating really soon!
So yes, we get into the centre of the city and I see the Gershwin ahead, NOOOOO! NEVER!? *GASP* COULD IT BE!?
YES! It bloody well was!
I went "Behind the emerald curtain" and got to hear all about what it takes to actually get Wicked onstage 8 times a week...in 9 different running productions!!!
I have to say though, the ultimate hilight was seeing the ORIGINAL Elphaba Act 2 dress worn by Idina herself! THAT one choked me up a bit! It was just so astonishingly detailed and beautiful. And to me - an utter glorifier of the world of theatre, it was a little like looking at a piece of history.
Just an absolutely priceless moment that blew me away!!!
But alas it had to end and we entered the rafle for front row seats of the matine...
Didn't win :-P
But it was cool, because my other birthday present from my cousin was tickets to see Wicked! So we are going to the Sunday show today!
I also tried my first twinkie (true Jonathan Larson fan I am I wanted my chance t dance around singing "Sugar so sweet - dodo do do do...") which was an experience I may repeat - but not often!
Now for lunch...AT THE FUCKING LIFE CAFE!
I cannot BELIEVE that I can now say I had Juevos Rancheros at the Life Cafe! And signed the RENTHead register - volume 4! What an AWESOME thing to say I did! I was SO BLOODY EXCITED!!!
After that we lined up for a couple of hours for $25 tickets to see "Fuerza Bruta - Look up" which is a VERY modern piece of acrobatic performance art theatre. I also got my first copy of the Village Voice! (Still very RENT! Adverts for Aids testing, Gay and Bi matchmaking, offers to pay healthy crack/cocaine adicts if the get tested...)
So we actually managed the cheap tickets (YEY!) and had an experience like I have never had before! It was like acrobatics/dance/trance/rave and by the end everyone was soaking wet and dancing in the fake, indoor rain!
I thought - bloody typical - I spend all day with my umbrella whenever it rains, brush my hair when my helmet is off, and its INDOORS where I get my hair all messed up by the rain!
But it was bloody cool man! If anyone knows of it, go see it! In fact have a few beers first. If it's still there when I come back again I think I will do that - and THAT will be an experience!
Anyone who saw the Eurovision song contest, I'm actualy pretty sure they were on it! Women in a massive - basically paddling pool - right above your head - looking down at you - slamming and splashing around...
AWESOME man! But I will say no more...
Then it was a meal at a Japanese restaurant as we walked through the East Village after dark - an atmosphere I really liked. Japanese food? Enjoyed the tofu, that was strange but col - but sushi/general fish...CREEPS ME OUT man!
Last stop, well not really a stop at all - a drive around the city at night.
The empire state building - though meaning nothing to me in the sense that it's just another big famous building in New York - was so breathtaking to see that at that moment, I fell in love with New York.
The rest of the cty was also an experience...The Upper West side with its lack of funky cool fire escapes but covered in trendy restaurants...Harlem where I'm glad I was wearing a biker jacket as I did feel rather single-white-female...Washington heights - where I can report people DON'T sing and dance to rap songs on the streets (sadly)...and then on the fast roads, wind whooshing through my hair again!
Back over bridges, seeing the skyline first from far away, then a bit closer, then RIGHT on the outskirts where every building in Manhattan rose above one another seemingly in an effort to overshaddow the next!
So - I think you'll agree...QUITE a day eh!?
As for NYC...I began to feel the different vibes in each area of the cirt. Althought not always comfortable yet in some of the less commercialised areas it was really cool to get to feel that. Literally a block can make a huge difference to the feel of the city made up of every culture imaginable!!!
As for the future - well it's only been one day, but I've done so much, and I still have so much to do! So much more than I could possibly do in the mere days I have left! I keep going to and fro in my thoughts. One moment I am DETERMINED to spend a year, or at least a few months, in the city, feeling what it's REALLY like to live in the most increddible city in the world!
But then, a few moments later I change my mind and it all seems a little too much to ask myself to actually want to live here for a sustained period of time.
But isn't that what the city does? Especially on your first full day...you can see New York through the eyes of a fmily who live in the suburbs on Mahopac out with the lakes and the trees - even if the father works in the city every day. But to ride around on a bike to all the different areas is a different thing entirely.
I want to want to live there for a while - you only live once eh? So why not experience that real Bohemian slice'olife. But at the moment I'm just enjoying the city for what it is to a newbie...exciting, interesting, a little overwhelming, but ttaly engulfing in style, substance and its utter uniqueness as a place!
As for today?
WICKED BABY! And who knows what else!
We're in NYC man...The possibilities are endless...