Nippy in NewYork

Coming to New York in the middle of the winter sounds like a crazy thing to do, but we did. It started as a nippy 18 degrees in New York, but so far it didn’t deter any plans or ability to walk outdoors. In fact, the noticeably fewer tourists, being able to get into restaurants and museums easily, and bargain hotel rates were all incentives for risking unpredictable weather. I came with my sister to show her all my favorite sights that include the Highline, the Mighty Mets (Metopera and the Metropolitan Museum) and the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA).

We power-walked the first morning from Midtown Manhattan and bee-lined down Third Avenue to Balthazar (shown on previous posts) for a brisk three-mile stretch, then made a quick stop to see the 911 Memorial. The fountain, a bottomless pit, was a sobering reminder of that fateful day that changed America and the world forever.

The new highrise developments in the area are stunningly beautiful, including Calatrava’s Transportation Center (also in header above). We headed over to the Highline afterwards for another short walk from 23rd to 34th Streets. Being able to walk everywhere is heaven, and staying in Midtown Manhattan makes everything all the more accessible. We clocked an average of 5-7 miles per day, so felt alert and energized.

My dear friends Lisa and Dick, who have been residents of NYC for over 35 years were ready to assist with event planning.  We started with dinner at Le Bateau Ivre downstairs from the Pod Hotel, tasted wine from the Chef & Sommelier glassware they brought to show us, then met the next evening for opera. Lisa was a bit skeptical of long, drawn-out operas that last well into the night, but the two short, hour-long verismo operas Cavallera Rusticana and Pagliacci were perfect to convince her that opera is a worthy investment.  The music is among some of the most beautiful in opera, so there wasn’t much convincing to do.

Starring Roberto Alagna in both operas, they were emotionally satisfying and the music was glorious. His performance was bright and powerful.  The story about a vaudeville troupe is a play within a play. Canio, the clown, whose wife is in love with another man, must perform his comedy act for the audience even though he is heartbroken inside. In an interview with Roberto Alagna, he commented on how relevant the story is to opera performers, but how unique it was to be sharing the lead roles with his real-life wife, Aleksandra Kurdak. (She played Nedda, Canio’s wife).

Later in the short week, we were also treated to a performance by the New York City Ballet. This time it was my turn to experience and appreciate dance through the joy of physicality combined with artistic talent.IMG_1537

In addition to Balthazar and Ess-a-Bagel, our dining events include Bar Boulud and the Smith (both conveniently next to Lincoln Center), and Pastrami Queen at 1125 Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side. Some creative soups at the MOMA cafe filled both our eyes and appetites.


When you can park yourself at one of New York’s best kept secrets–the Pod Hotel (at 230 E. 51st Street, between 2nd and Third Avenues) for $75 a night for two in bunk beds with a shared bath down the hall, mingle with international visitors of all ages, and spare the rest for all the food and entertainment in the Big Apple–what’s not to like? I normally do not mention hotels in my posts, but for variety and voracious urban consumers like me, this is it. Originally called the Pickwick Arms, we’ve stayed in this location in NYC off and on for over 30 years. To top it off, the Pod serves Ess-a-Bagels and Balthazar almond croissants in their cafe!!

The extensive Metropolitan Museum’s exhibition of Michelangelo’s Drawings, culled from over 23 sources throughout the world, was my primary purpose in coming to New York City. The private tour I took will follow in a separate post.

8 thoughts on “Nippy in NewYork”

  1. Vickie,

    Thanks!! It’s awesome. Brings back many wonderful, warm, funny (“where did everyone go?” at the gate) memories. I don’t know how you have the energy to crank it out so soon — you one clever chick. I would love to share with my kids and friends, is that okay? I want to check with you first, and also is it simply forwarding the blog?

    Back in the swing of things here. Saw film “Loving Vincent” and loved it — don’t know if you heard about it or saw it, film about Van Gogh. Very unusual painted ‘animated’ film. So timely for me since on the guided tour at the Metro the day after Michaelangelo one of the highlighted features was a Van Gogh. See it please?

    The name of the young Asian who does food blogs is Cynthia Linh. She was featured in Claudine Wong’s “Bay Area People” on Channel 2.


    On Sun, Feb 4, 2018 at 7:23 AM, Travels with Myself and Others wrote:

    > VickieVictoria posted: “Coming to New York in the middle of the winter > sounds like a crazy thing to do, but we did. It started as a nippy 18 > degrees in New York, but so far it didn’t deter any plans or ability to > walk outdoors. In fact, the noticeably fewer tourists, being able ” >


    1. Hi Muriel, it was great to travel with you. Telling Dick and Lisa about you brought back the very reason why I travel–you! So I can blame you for my travel addiction.
      Best way for kids and friends to read the blog is to accept an invitation that I send to them, and then they can receive notifications when there are new posts. Otherwise, you can certainly forward the blog to them, but alert them that the information will change when I add a new post.
      Thanks for the information on film about Van Gogh. Since I started drawing this year, I have become much more interested in films about artists. My art teacher recommended “Caravaggio” and after that I have been searching for new material. I’ll certainly have a look at the Van Gogh film, and glad that you caught the ones at the Met.
      Now that I’ve done the blog for four years, I keep a few tricks up my sleeve: I take photos as close to what I would post as possible so no editing is necessary, and I prepare and organize most of the material from my iPhone! The closer I can get to the source material, the faster it is to post. Lessons learned from a lot of goofs in the past.Now that we have traveled together, you can see in real time what a day in the life of a travel fanatic is, and how stimulating and energizing it is! Thanks for being such a great travel buddy!–V.


  2. Guten Tag Vicky,

    Ich liebe Meine Zeit in NYC. Fur mich ist es ein kleines Frankfurt, meine lieblingsstadt. Danke fur das Teile.


    1. Als ich in NYC war, lese ich die Übersetzung in der Oper auf Deutsch, nicht auf Englisch um die Sprache zu besser lernen! Und in meinem hotel dass ich genannt habe, hat Deutschen Reisenden.em Einer meiner lieblings Museen ist Die Neue Galerie, wohin ich viele Deutschen Expressionisten gesehen habe. Und Upper East Side hat eine kleinen Deutschenstadt. Wie ware es fuer Sie? Ich hoffe meine Schnitt kann Ihnen eine guten Erinnerung geben!


    1. We are going to have to rendezvous there together some time! Although not as warm as Chicago, but it’s warming…everyone seems friendlier these days. The 911 Memorial and building were one of the first buildings I looked at and thought about Chicago…and how the buildings in Chi-town have greater presence and beautiful proportions. Glad you are a pace-setter!!


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