We spent last week in NYC with our kids. It was nothing short of incredible. The trip was carefully planned, because I tend to overanalyze such things, after too much research on where to stay, when to leave, what to see, and everything else. It was a surprise trip, given to them on Christmas morning.
I lived in Manhattan almost 20 years ago for a brief and fun summer. It was an internship for American Express, down at the World Financial Center. I loved my job, and I loved the pace of the city. They offered me a permanent position in the marketing department. As the story goes, The Man won a bet and came to visit me, and the rest is history. I moved South, got married, had kids, and never looked back. I don’t regret not taking the job, but a part of my heart will always be in that city.
We’ve been fortunate enough to take our kids on a lot of fun trips, to a lot of fun places. They’ve never been to Disney, and I know some of you are freaking out right now, but they’ve never really asked. Neither of us went until we were older. I don’t feel like I was a suffering child without Disney. Our kids seem to be faring okay, as well. I’m sure we’ll get there eventually. Maybe not.
If you’ve been paying attention, you know we have two theater kids. They love performing. They also love watching people perform. We took them to their first Broadway show, and because I’m me, I cried. I didn’t cry because the story was sad; I cried because I was sitting in a theater, in NYC, with my kids. Judge if you must.
It was cold, y’all. Even the people who live in the city said it was brutal. Blizzard-like conditions swept through soon after our plane landed.
The first full day we were there, it snowed all day. I’ve always said snow makes the cold bearable, but I’ve learned that’s only partly true. New York City is a beautiful place. Blanketed in freshly fallen snow, it’s magical. We bundled up and walked up to Central Park. The seals in the zoo have an outdoor habitat, and they were jumping out of the water. People were sledding. We took a million pictures. On our walk home, we passed through Rockefeller Center, still decked in full Christmas regalia. It hadn’t reached the brutal point, yet. Our excitement about being there probably helped.
No one was allowed to leave the hotel room without minimum apparel requirements, which included long johns, two pairs of socks, a hat, gloves, and the coats we bought specifically for the trip. I went four days wearing no less than two pairs of pants.
We took the subway downtown, to catch a quick glimpse of the 9/11 memorial. It was the coldest day, with the wind whipping and “feels like” temps below 0. My adorable husband told us we only had two blocks to walk, which was doable, so we walked from the subway station. I know my way around the city fairly well, and once I spotted the big, modern tower at One World Trade, I remarked that it seemed much farther than two blocks. He showed me the distance on the pretty, colorful little subway map he was using as a reference. He was surprised to learn that a subway map cannot, in fact, be used as a street map. It doesn’t include all the streets. Ahem.
Mostly because it was temporary, we survived. The kids had a blast, and The Boy is determined to live there one day. He asked what I would think, if he just disappeared into the city, never to be seen again. He’d fit right in, but I’m not willing to let him go just yet. The Girl didn’t get to do as much shopping as she’d have liked. A return trip is in order.
In the summer of ’98, my husband and I fell in love in NYC. Twenty years later, in the winter of ’18, our kids fell in love with NYC. Life has a lovely way of coming full circle. I’d prefer that circle not be covered in snow and ice, but I’d do it all again in a New York minute.