Tuesday, 10 July 2012

DC & New York: VIII

All too soon our last day in America arrived. Fortunately we’d booked a late night flight, which meant that we could still do some sightseeing that day. We spent the morning packing up our things and then went to Veselka for breakfast as our farewell to New York treat. Any place where I can get french toast (made with challah bread) with a side of kielbassa for breakfast is alright by me! As an anniversary present David bought me the Veselka cookbook. And in typical David form he decided to make a witty comment about how it was really a gift for himself, since I’d be the one doing the cooking. This led to the man behind the counter laughing, exclaiming “DUDE, I can’t BELIEVE you said that” and then informing every passing waiter of my husband’s wit. I refrained from hitting David with the book ;)

After breakfast we went back to Midtown East to do our last bit of sightseeing/shopping. This led to a very long time spent in Argosy Books, where David finally hit his motherload and ended up with a bag full of books (we snuck it onto the plane as ‘reading material for the flight’). Then it was off to Dylan’s Candy Bar, where we managed to cross most of our souvenir-gift-list off in one stop, including a gourmet dog treat for my dad's dog. It’s a multi-story shop with each floor devoted to candy. In fact the floors themselves are clear and full of candy.

We walked by Bloomingdales every day.
From there we ambled over to FAO Schwartz, but after Dinosaur Hill and Dylan’s Candy Bar it failed to impress us so we bought a giant cupcake to share and then wandered around Central Park, enjoying the scenery and the chance to rest our legs. I wish that we’d been able to spend more time there, but it’s a giant park and time was flying at an alarming rate.

We were back at the flat by 5pm to pick up our luggage, say our farewells, and head off to JFK. I like being ridiculously early for flights, because I hate the stress that comes with rushing, but we made really good time which meant that we were able to enjoy Tim Horton’s coffee at a little cafe by the airport shuttle train. It wasn’t as good as in Canada, of course, but we can’t get it at all in England so it was a most worthwhile stop. Then it was a short ride to the airport and the regular hassle of checking in and waiting and more checking and more waiting...

Neat building on our way back to the flat

I let David have the aisle seat and my generosity was rewarded as the seat next to me remained vacant for the flight. Sitting for 7hrs on an airplane is less fun than usual while pregnant, so I was glad of the extra legroom. The best surprise of all for our return journey was how easy it was to get through Immigration at Heathrow. Because I have a visa which allows me to work, I normally have some level of questioning at the Immigration desk, and in my experience the border guards at Heathrow are the most terrifying when it comes to random questions on policy which you a) should know the answer to or b) know the new answer to while the person questioning you only knows the old answer. But this time they took one look at my visa, asked me where my husband was (next booth over, ma’am), and then waved me through. I suspect they’ve been given sensitivity training for the Olympics. Either that or 10 days in America is less suspicious than 21 days in Canada.

After an absurdly long bus ride we ended up back at home. It was so nice to be back in our flat. But we had less than 24 hours to settle in before the first of David's family arrived for their visits.

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