So, the Mum and Ali American adventure has begun. It all started at approximately 4.10am this morning when I awoke to the sound of my trusty alarm.
Sticking to my usual airport style (hair scraped back, no make up and the comfiest clothes I can find) it took me just ten minutes to get ready. This was just as well because true to form, our reliable taxi driver Phil had arrived ten minutes early.
Phil and I then enjoyed some typically British polite weather chat before picking up Mum. Unfortunately, Mum hadn’t bargained on us being ten minutes early so was left all of a fluster (not helped by a barking Biba!) Thankfully Mum’s nerves soon disappeared when she was reunited with moi and we got chatting about everything from wardrobe choices to women’s rights.
Before we knew it we had arrived at Terminal 5 where sweet Phil saw us off all set for checking in. Checking in wasn’t quite as easy as we’d hoped however, as despite both us and Phil checking the BA website we were at the wrong terminal! Luckily a friendly airport man told us where we needed to be and a short train and lift ride later we were in the right place.
After checking in we went through security where of course Mum was stopped – fortunately they didn’t find her stash of Syndol and we made it through the gate okay. Mum then poodled to Prêt, while I got a Nero, before taking the obligatory and always rough looking airport selfie.
To mum’s delight, despite the terminal drama, we then still had enough time to do a little airport shopping so she treated herself to a new mascara.
We are now safely on the plane. Mum has already had a vodka and a wine (note it’s 1030am as I write this) and stowed away enough airport food to keep us going for next three months. I’ve done a Sudoko and two crosswords and now I’m deciding whether to watch a film or have a nap…decisions!
So, when we last spoke I was debating over watching a film and having a nap… I went with the film and watched Gone Girl, which I enjoyed muchly. After the film I spoke to a crying mum – don’t worry she wasn’t having the holiday blues already! She said the film she watched was just v emotional but I think it might have something to do with the vodka, wine on five hours sleep. Tears dried we then did a crossword and played my favorite game…who’s prettier x or x? The rest of the flight flew by (pun intended) as we listened to Dad’s specially created New York play list. However, I think Mum’s sleep deprivation and drink did affect her judgment slightly as she asked why Dad had put this song on the play list. The song in question was Frank Sinatra’s New York New York…
Getting our luggage and through security was surprisingly easy, as was grabbing a cab – although Mum did leave the driver looking v confused when she asked him if he knew where we going despite only just meeting him and not even telling him our address – clearly his psychic powers weren’t in gear.
Sadly our journey to the hotel wasn’t quite as easy as we got stuck in the worst traffic jam, made all the more worse by the infomercial playing on repeat in the taxi TV – mum and I never want to hear how to make a cheesy croutons again!
Arriving safely at the hotel we checked in and unpacked. Feeling more awake and human we then asked the helpful (albeit slightly crazy) concierge the best way to central Park. After slagging off British Airways for a good five minutes she directed us and to our delight we didn’t get lost!
A nice mosey round the park, a few photos by the Lennon tribute and Trump Tower later we decided to head back to the hotel for a coffee and snacks. Watching vintage friends we then put on our warm but stylish clothes and headed out to Time Square.
Here I was pleased to see a VERY big Forever 21 and not so pleased to get accosted by a man dressed as the snow man from Frozen. Wanting something simple and close for dinner we went to the Olive Garden where to Mum’s pleasure we were greeted with two free wine samples.
Full from our tasty meal we trundled back to the hotel for an early night. Mum is now doing her stretches, I’m about to have a much-needed wash before we head out and see if this storm Stella has actually happened… Wish us luck!
Day two cont’d
Okay so when we last spoke Mum and I were just about to see if Stella had actually happened… Well it definitely had and it turns out that despite being the city that never sleeps, New York surprisingly stops when it snows. After having breakfast at our now favorite Starbucks, the not so friendly concierge informed us that EVERYTHING had closed apart from the Museum of Modern Art. Not feeling particularly arty mum and I decided to give the museum a miss and head to the shops instead. As the shops didn’t open until ten we killed a bit of time in our room first with a bit of Kardashians and crossword action.
Crossword sort of done we hit the streets and headed to Fifth Avenue. On our travels we came across a department store that was open and warm so we made a quick entry. However, the store was so warm that before we knew it we needed to strip off!
Needing to cool down we hit the streets again and stumbled across Macys. After a little mosey around my feet were starting to get frost bite so we thought we’d better get back to the hotel for a change of shoes and a little dry off.
Dry and warm we were then in need of refueling so after a little walking we were at a new Starbucks. Chow down we decided to give the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art a go. Unfortunately our passes didn’t cover the museum but after wandering round the gift shops we felt like we’d seen the best bits any way.
Full of culture we were in need of more shopping so. We headed back to Fifth Avenue where we again somehow managed to stumble upon the Rockefeller centre.
A few more photos later we were in need of some caffeine so we headed back to our favorite Starbucks before going back to our room. Mum is now trying to explain her cryptic crossword to me (I’m smiling but it’s not going in) tonight we’re thinking of going to an Irish bar and Mum’s already said she’s having vodka… I’ll let you know how it turns out!
So, when we last spoke Mum and I were thinking of going to an Irish bar… And that we did! To our surprise the less than authentic bar did actually have a real Irish barman who poured Mum a very Irish size measure of vodka leaving her feeling ever so slightly tipsy. We then enjoyed some very deep and meaningful conversation, discussing whether in fact everything did happen for a reason before heading across the road for a very tasty meal at TGIs.
A couple of large wines and a couple of big topics later we made the snowy walk back to our hotel. After another cozy night sleep we awoke please to see the majority of snow had been cleared and things were open!
We then trotted to our favorite Starbucks for breakfast before walking to the top of the Rock. Here we took a few photos and a short video before getting a cab (hailed by moi) to the 9/11 museum. This was v moving and interesting. We then went to a cute deli for lunch where we got refueled and re-warmed!
Suitably energized we were ready for more shopping, so, we took a wander around Century 21. Nothing really took our fancy though so after another quick look at the 9/11 memorial we hailed another cab back to our hotel. Unfortunately, sticking with the cab tradition of the holiday this was less than quick so we were driven slightly mad by the constant running infomercial again.
We are now back at the hotel watching Wedding Crashers. Mum is keen to go back to our Irish bar again tonight – can’t think why… I’ll let you know what topics we discuss tomorrow!
So, last time we spoke Mum and I were just about to head to our now favorite Irish Bar. Here we were greeted once again by our very favorite real Irish barman. Topics up for discussion included our preferred places in America, why Mum doesn’t like ordering vodkas in English pubs and what was wrong with American TV. We then headed back to the Olive Garden for another tasty meal where we met an English couple. Bonding over our interest in the weather they gave us some very helpful tips, including the subway! They explained how easy it was and which one we needed to get if we wanted to go to Ellis Island. Feeling brave we decided we’d give it a go tomorrow. So, after another good night sleep we awoke bright and early all set for the subway. A little bored of our usual Starbucks breakfast we gave it a miss and went to a cute diner instead. Feeling full we then went to Forever 21 where I surprisingly didn’t buy anything!
We then not only successfully found the subway we needed to get but we bought our tickets and made it to the Ellis Island ferry in one piece. A short and quite cold ferry ride later we were at the Statue of Liberty!
The lady was very impressive… The tour was less than, focusing more on copper than the immigrants. Thankfully the Ellis Island museum was a lot more interesting (and warm!)
It was then time for lunch, so we hopped back on the ferry to Wallstreet where we popped into Prêt for a v nice meal. We then successfully made it back to the subway again, although this time for some reason the ticket didn’t work for me and I had to sneak under the barrier – luckily I made it pass the police.
We then made one final trip to our favorite Starbucks before heading back to our room. I’m now watching the Kardashians and Mum is packing. Tonight dinner’s on Mum so I’m going to pick the most expensive place I can find… I’ll let you know where we end up.
So, last time we spoke Mum and I were just about to go out for dinner. Not wanting to venture too far we enjoyed a few last photos on Times Square before wandering along to our favorite Irish bar, for Mum’s favorite vodka measures, followed by another trip to the Olive Garden. Here we had another tasty meal but unfortunately the service wasn’t up to its usual standard as we got served by a slightly slimy waiter who didn’t get Mum’s wine order right. We still had a good time though and after putting the world’s to right again we moseyed back to the hotel.
Watching a final episode of the Kardashians, we finished off our packing before hitting the hay for an early night. I awoken by two alarms we got your bright and early to check out and grab a taxi to the airport. Thankfully this journey was relatively stress free with us arriving at the airport in one piece.
Successfully checking in, we then sort of sailed through security (when I say sort of I mean I got through and mum got caught up as per) feeling peckish we then grabbed some breakfast before walking around the very few shops. Three Sudokus and a couple of Mum’s crossword clues later it was time to board our plane.
We’ve now just had lunch (at least I think that’s what it was!) Mum I’d watching La La land and I’m watching Loving but I’m not really loving it so I might switch. Either way I’ve loved this very lovely holiday with my very lovely Mama xx