September was the month of the coffee table. After more than a year of laziness and commitment issues we finally added a coffee table to the living room. We were most excited because a coffee table=coffee table books=maturity.
Turns out coffee tables are also great for elevating your legs, resting a glass, setting your computer on, and holding massive September issue magazines. Or maybe you already know the benefits of a coffee table. Anyway, life feels a bit more complete.
In September, Mom also made her annual fall trip to NYC on her birthday and t’was almost the death of her. Quite literally. Nonchalantly she told us about her near demise and explained that she’d be a bit late because one of the engines blew up mid-air. Guess we can’t laugh at lil’ katie anymore when she takes a 24-hour train ride to avoid planes.
When Mom visits she has an uncanny ability to plan perfect NYC outings. The perfect amount of adventure and rest. On her first day we went to Governors Island. After exploring the island and a quick West Indian lunch, we decided to give our legs a rest and rent a surrey bike (sadly, without fringe on top). Of course, if you give a girl a bike, you’re gonna have to give her a hammock to rest in afterwards. (Same can be said of boys—not trying to be anti-feminist here). Thankfully, we found the hammock grove. I only regret that it took me this many years to discover the hammock grove. I actually managed to take a little cat nap in the sun, as couples chatted in neighboring hammocks.
We later joined Anna at The San Gennaro Festival. Because how could one resist a NYC street fair, where you shuffle through a claustrophobic flood of people and discover which new items are being deep fried this season (besides the standard Oreos). Pickles is the answer.
Due to poor travel coordination skills, I left for LA while Anna and Mom carried on in NYC just fine without me. Almost too fine. I was happy for Anna to have one-on-one time with Mom, but was still a little jealous as these pics rolled in …
of NYC bagels … An afternoon at the Brooklyn Museum shoe exhibit … Friday night at Matilda the Musical (which was reportedly amazing. Anna almost jumped out of her seat when Bruce ate the whole chocolate cake … BRUCE! BRUCE! BRUCE!) Playtime with Lola. Reading time with Lola …Nap time with Lola … Long walks through Brooklyn … Skyline selfies …
Lounging and lemonade at the Pop-Up Pool …
Meanwhile, I spent 5 days in LA and took about that many photos. Because who wants to take a picture of strip malls and traffic? Of course, the coast is beautiful but the city is not to my liking. Too sprawled out and inaccessible for someone who doesn’t know how to drive.
At the beach, for 3 blissful minutes I forgot about the existence of sharks and enjoyed the warm water. And then, 3 black fins appeared off in the distance. Turns out they were dolphins, but after that I stayed on shore. I was visiting Rey who was in LA for a med school rotation, and was living in the home of some Craig’s List people. This couple had a beautiful golden retriever with lung cancer who sadly could not get off the living room floor. Every time we left the house we sat vigil at her bedside for a bit as she struggled to breathe. And then on the third day we discovered the living room stripped of its rugs and dog photos. The dog had died. When the devastated couple returned, we offered our condolences. The man, knowing we both work in hospitals, started to broach the subject of Formaldehyde. “So how does Formaldehyde work … do you soak it? Sprinkle it?…” For a second I thought he was making a joke and then when he didn’t smile I imagined the worst. Turns out they had cut off the dog’s tail at the vet in order to preserve it. Even after a year as a nurse, I still don’t how to preserve a dog’s tail.
Hence why Craigslist home-stays are risky. Do you mind living with strangers as their dog is dying (a pretty intimate, pivotal moments in these people’s lives) or would you prefer your only human contact to be greeting the cleaning ladies in the hallway? I remain undecided.
This is not the dog that died. As we were walking around Malibu, I thought how lovely it would be to have a dog to walk. Well, then we stumbled upon a stray dog, and for two seconds it was a delightful turn of events to have a dog magically appear at your feet. Then it became a bit of a burden when we realized we were responsible and should find its owner. Which we eventually did.
Despite all the hype, I truly did enjoy a grilled cheese, fries and neopolitan milkshake at In-N-Out. Lastly, I loved how sensible California sign-makers are. I definitely did NOT even think about going near the rail and I would ALWAYS treat a rattlesnake with the utmost respect.
Your weather is lovely LA, but give me the sidewalks, streets and subways of NYC.