One month from today will be February 14. The day before my Mama’s birthday. The week before my birthday. Valentine’s Day.
This year I will be spending Valentine’s Day in New York City with the love of my life. During the day we have plans to visit Teddy Roosevelt’s birthplace, go to the “top of the rock” and explore a bit of the city. That night we will be seeing Emma Stone in her final night performance as Sally Bowles in Cabaret with my best friend Laura and her boyfriend. I have no doubt it will be an amazing day!
Our trip will be more than just Saturday though, and I know the whole weekend will be amazing because it the fulfillment of a dream since childhood to visit New York. I always missed the opportunities when my classmates went. In sixth grade when we lived in Northern Virginia, my team was the not the one that went on the field trip to NYC and Ellis Island. In high school, my parents said I didn’t need to go on the field trip to the east coast since I had lived there. Never mind that the trip spent a majority of the time in NYC, seeing a Broadway show and visiting the UN – two things I loved. Because I had lived outside of DC, visited Philadelphia often as a family and had gone on a 5th grade field trip there, and I had been to all of the historical sites in Virginia that the field trip included, I did not go. It made me wonder if I’d ever get the opportunity to visit the city.
Then after college, my best friend since we were freshman in high school moved to New York to pursue her dreams of working in the fashion industry. We had lofty plans that I’d move to Washington to pursue my passion for politics and we’d be able to visit each other over long weekends. Four years later, I’m still in Colorado and preparing to move to Idaho. I no longer dream of living in Washington like I used to. The beautiful city on the POtomac will always hold a special place in my heart, but I no longer want to live there. I prefer to visit and instead live among the mountains and rivers and prairies and national parks that have made me fall in love with the mountain west. However, I still dream of visiting the city that holds so much culture and history and curiosity for me.
So this year, my incredible boyfriend decided to take me on this dream trip for my twenty-sixth birthday. He is truly making a dream come true for me and I don’t know that I’ll ever be able to fully express what a wonderful gift this is to me. I get teary-eyed every time I think about it. So, he gave me free reign to do whatever I want to do tourist-wise in the city over president’s day weekend. That means I have 3 and a half days to fill with exploration and memory making.
I know that on Friday, the thirteenth of February, we will be visiting the Museum of Natural History and Central Park. I am really hoping there is snow on the ground in Central Park – how beautiful would that be?! We are also planning on eating breakfast at Sarabeth’s since all my friends who visit New York take a picture with the sign and send it to me. Plus, we share a name – I clearly need to eat there!
Sunday we will attend mass at St. Patrick’s and possibly visit the 9-11 memorial.
I’m not sure what else I want to do as we do not know what the weather will be like yet. If it’s surprisingly warm, we’ll want to spend more time outside. If it’s bitterly cold, we will want to do some museums. So I’m trying to be flexible and fluid in our plans as I know this will not be our last trip to the big apple. But since it will be my first, I know it will me memorable and magical whatever we do.
What are your favorite things to do in New York?