Thursday, October 19, 2006

Manhattan Momma

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey
Central Park

Boy, I’ve got a lot of catching up to do! I am posting articles that happened nearly three weeks ago! Still, the stories need to be told.

My Mom visited for a week. If you don’t know that already you are not reading the Blog. Shame on you! One thing we wanted to do was take her into New York City and show her a few of the things we’ve enjoyed since living here. [You’ll remember our first trip into Manhattan, down Fifth Avenue, into Tiffany’s, etc.]. We also wanted to do the touristy thing and take a carriage ride through Central Park. Carriages are a dime a dozen [well, actually more expensive than that—$34 for one half hour] at 59th and Fifth, and we’ve always been tempted, but had never done it.

First a little bit of background on my Mom. Mom lives in the “sticks.” No doubt about it. She doesn’t really have any close neighbors, and the only glimpse of the closest neighbors she does have is their dog Lucy, who has visited Mom nearly every day [and sometimes more than once per day] for the past 15 years or so. Poor Lucy. She has survived what my Mom throws out for “her” foxes. Chicken bones, corn cobs, old moldy bread, leftovers. Maybe that’s what has kept her alive so long. She is very arthritic now [Lucy, not my Mom!] and comes hobbling up the drive. When she scents food, her pace picks up and her tail starts to wag. Bless her heart. Geez, I’m getting off the topic again. Point being, Mom doesn’t live in a very populated area and is not used to “big” cities, which she would probably define as Wayne, NJ.  We had done the Statue of Liberty with her this summer, but that’s not really into the city. So, we decided it was something she should experience.

We set off fairly early in the morning. The day was sunny and crisp, but not too chilly. Traffic was heavier on this Saturday than on previous trips in, and Henry Hudson


Parkway was a bit clogged up. We parked at a garage we like [but just barely as it’s very tiny and ours was the last car he took before turning people away] and started to walk the few short blocks to Fifth Avenue. We had to wait while traffic officers stopped pedestrians and cars alike to let a truck with mounted movie cameras [they were filming some movie] go back and forth across the intersection a few times. We wondered which movie it might be? Soon we were back on our way, strolling past Central Park.

Our first stop was F.A.O. Schwartz, just to browse and try and catch the show played upon the larger-than-life piano keyboard. Those of you that have seen the movie Big might remember the scene where Tom Hanks tapped out Heart & Soul. That would be the place!
Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

After that we strolled down Fifth Avenue and let Mom browse at Tiffany’s, and then on to be blinded by the expanse of marble at Trump Tower. She thought Tiffany’s was glorious and Trump’s was tacky. Mom might live in the sticks, but she’s got class!

We went to lunch at our little restaurant that we had found on our very first trip in, Bottego del Vino, and had a wonderful lunch. We all had pasta. Rick had a wonderful tortellini with porcini mushrooms; Mom had a simple
pomodoro sauce with lots of fresh basil; and I chose wide ribbon noodles with a tomato-based sauce with crab. Rick and I enjoyed a glass of Amarone Sartori with ours.

Our waiter was very Italian and I had to listen closely to understand him. We told him we would be coming back in a few weeks for a late dinner after a show. He told us that we should expect it to be “crazy busy” since Sophia Loren was filming a movie in New York City and just happened to be staying in the building above the restaurant. He said she comes down for dinner and everyone knows it, so they all come to catch a glimpse of her. Oh my. What if we see her? Do we act like we don’t? 

After lunch we walked over to the Central Park side of the street and looked all the Hansom Cabs to chose which one we would ride in. I already knew I didn’t want any whose driver was not dressed up. Somehow riding in a horse-drawn carriage with a guy dressed in blue jeans, old shoes and t-shirt doesn’t quite cut it. So, we chose a smart black carriage with a good-looking black horse, and a driver all decked out in black livery. I’m sorry about the rental truck in back of my photo. Sometimes you just can’t stage the shot and have to go with it. You can see Mom and Rick already seated and waiting on me!

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

Our driver asked if we wanted to ride without his narration, but we said no, please talk to us. So he regaled us with bits of information as we clopped along. It was a nice day and a very pleasant ride. I think we got our money’s worth. I would do it again, maybe in Winter next time. Here’s another photo:

Lynne Robinson, Hewitt, New Jersey

My Mom enjoyed her trip to the Big City, but I think she was a little overwhelmed. One of her comments as we strolled along 5th Avenue was ‘There are so many people. I didn’t expect it to be this crowded and busy.’ Well, Mom, I told her, you’re not in Olmstedville anymore. It IS New York City after all!


Welcome, I'm Lynne. You know me better as a 'new' Jersey Girl. But now I've moved once again, this time to North Carolina. Here I write about my thoughts, good food, and of course, dogs.

© 2006-2022 Lynne Robinson All photography and text on this blog is copyright. For use or reproduction please ask me first.

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