Sunday, August 13, 2006

New York Vacation - Day 3 - 4

My last few days have to be lumped together because they were just fun lazy days. We pretty much wandered around town and were still letting the event the night before sink in.

The only real plans we had for day 3 were dinner plans at Campagnola that night on 77th and 1st. In all honesty, this restaurant knocked me off my feet and has become one of my favorite dining experiences...if not the best. Why would I say such a thing? I think it's because I really threw caution to the wind and tried some things that I would never have put in my mouth. When we walked in and met our server (really nice gentleman from northern Italy), my father requested two pizzas as appetizers. Oddly enough, Dad wasn't kidding. He really wanted pizza but our server took it as a joke and smiled saying, "I'm gonna take care of you!" I ordered a glass of their house chianti. We were served an immense amount of food that early on could have been seen as a sampler plate with gnocchi, ravioli, calamari and a scallop (never had a scallop before but it will have to be as amazing to get me to try it again.) Next came a few other items and Chilean sea bass (which again, I had to try and found tremendous.) Then came a gigantic T-bone steak which had the meat cut from the bone and sliced in strips. I could only eat a little of that as I was already pretty full. Then came dessert: a platter with 6 different gellatos, slices of ice cream between them, little pastries in between those and a sundae in the middle containing black coffee beans. Tried out their moscatto (dessert wine) at this point. I was stuffed but really felt like I had toured Italy without eating Italian fast food.

After returning to the hotel, Dad walked with us back down to the Tonic Bar & Grill. I guess it was Beck's night or something because we got the last free round of them as well as key chains. This was the first time we were all able to have a drink together during the trip and Dad left after his bottle was gone. I stayed out a bit longer, had a few more drinks and walked back. Last minute, I decided to look into the Hooters across the street from where we were staying to see what it was like. I then called it an evening.

We were hoping to take a tour of the city the next morning but Matt and Mike (pictured there on the right) were recovering from their night out. While waiting for them, Dad and I noticed a fair going on outside the hotel (running all the way down 7th.) I slept in a bit longer and went to the gym with Dad. Then we walked around the fair. It seems they do this every 2 weeks where they close down the street and put little vendors with everything from luggage, t-shirts (bought a few offensive ones,) reggae CDs (possibly RIAA infringement,) Mexican food (wasn't going to risk it,) sunglasses (bought a pair,) fortune tellers (I'm sorry but I don't expect much when they charge $2 to $5 per reading) and much more.

After walking the length of the fair, we got a call from my brothers (who desperately needed coffee.) We walked back, walked the street again and returned back for a trip to the deli. That was when we figured that we only had a few hours left before we needed to get ready for our flight. Having packed our bags, we decided to walk past the fair and go further into the city towards Top Of The Rock. It seems the GE building (owned by NBC) has an observation deck on top called Top Of The Rock and our best chance of seeing the city would be from 70 stories up. So, I took a bunch of photos from there and as Dad, Matt and Mike walked in. We ran through the tour to save time and went straight up. Pretty amazing view. We then ran back out, took a cab back to the Manhattan Club, picked up our luggage and flew back home. Upon later reflection, the timeliness couldn't be better (seeing what happened with flights the following week.)

As you can tell, I'm throwing as many pictures up here as possible but pay close attention to the last photo. Imagine owning a company with that name (or even just being a driver.) Don't be afraid to click and zoom in. I just wonder how many people keep signing him up for Cialis and Enzyte samples. Thank you for sharing my vacation with me.


Fred said...

I didn't even know Mr. Softeee was around anymore. Those trucks were regular visitors to my neighborhood when I was growing up.

Nice recap, Martin. It looks like you guys had a great time. I'll be on Long Island this weekend, but won't have any time to go into the city. At least reading your posts will tide me over until the next time.

LoraLoo said...

Mr. Softee...LMAO

Those pictures from 70 stories up are breathtaking. That must be central park in the middle there?

Thanks for sharing your NYC experience with us!

Ken said...

Wow. Mr. Softee...we have Ice Cream trucks driving the neighborhood these days, but I get the feeling they are more for the construction workers than us residents.

Thanks for the stories for "The City." It's been enjoyable!

Anonymous said...

Beautiful and interesting pics (especially Mr., thank you for sharing :)

Cupcake Blonde said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I like your style and will be visiting you as well from now on.

David Amulet said...

That sounds like one amazing dinner. I'm very jealous right now.

-- david

Anonymous said...

Hey thanks for visiting my blog!

I'm really hoping to get to NYC for my 21st next March and you've just gone and got me all excited about it! Not that that's a bad thing! Really nice pictures

Lucy Stern said...

Sounds to me like you had a great vacation. I love the picture of central park. It must have been fun hob nobbin' at Tony Bennet's birthday. He still sings as good as ever.

Cinderella said...

Mr. Softee kicks azz!! New York is a great City to visit..there is so much to do and something is always open, no matter what time ...I guess that's why it's named "The city that never sleeps"

Looks like you took some great shots! Glad you enjoyed your visit!

Teri said...

Glad you had such a good time! Those pictures were pretty amazing. So when are you planning your next vacation? :)