It is a wonderful thing to be close to water of any sort. Where there is water, there are usually piers and waterside places to enjoy one’s self. Pier A Harbor House is one of such places. Parked in Lower Manhattan, you are treated to a sweeping view of many sites, including our lovely Lady Liberty. You know, that little mystery where you are always wondering what’s under that tunic. If you want to mingle with the after-workers, flirting, laughing and flitting, stay downstairs. Head upstairs to the whiskey bar and balcony for more quiet – and one of the best martini and old fashioned makers in the city. You’ll know him when you see him. He has a two-letter name, as most bartenders should. Go around sunset and enjoy the glow.
For something a bit more chilled out, head Uptown to Pier i Café. It can be a bit tricky to get to, but it’s so worth the effort. A cute place to lounge with nosh and have inexpensive drinkies with a view, it is perfect for a friendly meet-up, or to cap off a wander in the nearby Riverside Park. This is a perfect place to go to for artists, leave the city behind, or get inspired.
As you can imagine, there were absolutely incredible animals all over Peru. It was like a biologist’s wet dream. It was a writer’s orgasm. It was a person who likes animals heavenly song. There were a couple of creatures, however, that probably shouldn’t exist – unless you are in like the 5th circle of hell. This doesn’t mean that they weren’t super cool. It just means, hello, evolution – what happened there?
Soul music is having a revival – Halleluiah! Finally, finally we are starting to hear more of the tunes that make us shiver, that tear at our hearts and souls. New ones, so we don’t have to always rely on our old school playlists. The late night talk crews have gotten on board; most recently with Stephen Colbert’s opening of The Late Show featuring the likes of Paul Janeway of St. Paul & The Broken Bones, and Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes, to name a few. His house band is Jon Batiste and Stay Human. Enough said.
This past weekend, I went over to Forest Hills Stadium to see Alabama Shakes live, and along with craft beer, delicious wine, and lobster rolls, was treated to goose bump inducing, tear jearking tunes that make one oh so happy.
Getting up Early, and The Amazon
I don’t like to get up early. Normally, anything before 7am fills me with a dread that keeps me up half the night worrying. I also usually need breakfast when I get up, followed by a green tea, then a double espresso coffee. Peru was the first holiday I’ve ever had in which we got up before 7am almost every single day. I am still filled with wonder how I even agreed to this trip ideology in the first place.
Why? There was just too damn much to do. At least the breakfasts were really good (amazing cheese, flatbread, ham, porridge, freshly blended fruit juice, special Peruvian coffee syrup you add to hot water), though my green tea was replaced by Coca Tea – which actually tastes a lot like it.
Now, everyone’s been making a bit of a fuss about The NoMad Hotel. This is entirely justified. I think the Nomad bar is one of my fav places in NYC to go for drinks and food. Their restaurant is fairly divine, but if you want something cheaper, and a bit less of a commitment, try the bar. This is a great general rule for restaurants you want to try - go to lunch or the bar for a less expensive experience. The food here is fantabulous, the cocktails swoon worthy, and they have a hotdog to rival the Crif-masters. I would live on those and the scallop ceviche dish if I could. Plus, the hostesses are sweethearts and always try to find you a table – a rare thing in this city.
I must admit, I might be a little bit biased. I grew up in New Mexico – where the land actually bleeds art. Seriously, if you’ve been there, you know what I’m talking about. Blood flows from the sand and mountains, from our Navajos and other tribes, from our Mexican heritage and influence, from our crazy hippies. Literally, you walk down the road, and it’s like Giorgia O’Keefe just coughed up a painting.
So, as once the destination of errant geniuses like Ansel Adams and D.H. Lawrence, modern vivants like Tom Ford, and still birthing art on the streets, it seems no surprise that the film industry is booming, Canyon Road in Santa Fe is humming and Vince Gilligan strode through with his television wonders. Despite all this, local art and artists need to be supported. It is only through the dedication of people like those of the Humbird NM team, Immastar Productions and the delicious brews of ‘Burque local, Tractor Brewery that things like the 24 HOURS OF ART festival on (Sept 18th – 20th) can happen.
When I think of Peru, a couple of things now come to mind. Well, tons, but I’ll limit it down to the first pops. Ready! Set! Go –
Seeing the top of the canopy of the Amazon, documentary-style, the colors of the sun festival, throwing up in front of 80 people on top of a very high mountain, being alone on a trail with a donkey and a llama, a very pleasurable 17-hour bus ride, exceptional rum on a sand dune, lots of bird poo, a tie for the best food experience of my life, and dogs. Yes, dogs.