Most people don’t think of NYC, the city that truly never sleeps, as the ideal destination for a relaxing weekend away. However, for me it was the perfect place for some R&R. My college roommate, Lena, had taken up residence in the East Village for the summer. It had only been a few weeks since I had seen her last but friendship withdrawal is very real, so I packed my bags and made my way to the big city.
The first night I got there Lena and I spent hours reporting all the details of our moves back home, new jobs, and our boys. Oh, did I miss our girl time. It wasn’t until I could literally hear my stomach growling that we left the apartment and made our way to the Chelsea Market. There is really nothing better than walking around the streets of New York City at dusk. As the sun goes down and it begins to cool off people return to the streets in their night-out attire with looks of excitement and anticipation on their faces for the evenings they have ahead of them that are full of potential. The Chelsea Market was BEAUTIFUL. It was filled with too many food vendors to count. I highly recommend it to all you foodies out there. After spending way too much time contemplating my many options I ended up getting Beyond Sushi for dinner. Who knew vegan sushi could be so good? (I have spent the last three weeks unsuccessfully trying to recreate their vegan spicy aioli sauce).
After our dinners we walked over to The High Line in Chelsea. The High Line is an AMAZING park that is about 30 feet above street level, built on top of an old railway line. The views of the river and skyline and the abundance of flowerbeds make it the ultimate date-night destination. Lena and I sat at an overlooked and watched hundreds of little yellow taxicabs drive underneath us and deeper into the suburban jungle as the sun went down.
The next day while Lena was off saving the world at one of the Women’s Non-Profit organizations she is working at this summer, I went to midtown to meet a friend from school for lunch. We went to a healthy Japanese “fast food” place called Café Hanamizuki. It was the first time I had ever eaten a rice ball and it took me about five minutes to figure out the proper way to eat it, but once I did I was very pleasantly surprised. The tofu rice balls and miso soup served as the perfect fast, but filling lunch.
That night once Lena got off work we walked down the street from her apartment to the Union Square Park. The ultimate spot to people watch. It was filled with street performers, couples holding hands, and children playing in the grass. For dinner that night we went to Sushi of Gari in the Upper East Side. After a year living in Los Angeles, I like to think of myself as a sushi connoisseur. Sushi of Gari went beyond my expectations. After dinner we spent some more time walking around the city, trying to take in all it had to offer us. We eventually made it to Insomnia Cookies for a midnight snack and a milk-shot nightcap.
The next morning it was already time to leave and return back to my reality. I left New York City rested, with a full belly, and replenished with the love and sense of acceptance that I know only true friends can bring you. This trip was a reminder that the people you love are ALWAYS worth the journey.