Right... so I know I said I wasn't going to blog on my trip, but this was too good to pass up. It was one of those perfect days where the stars aligned and brought every good thing our way; including an autograph by celebrity food chef, Luca Manfe (currently doing amazingly well on Master Chef), and a perfect bottle of Chocolate Milk from Ronnybrook Dairy. I'll start at the beginning though.
An early morning plane had us scrambling through the long security line and praying we still had time for coffee. After a stressful take-off the rest of the flight went smoothly and we landed in NYC before we barely had a chance to get antsy.
My impression of NYC taxi drivers is fast, gruff, and careless; our experience could not have been farther from this idea. Our daughter was inordinately excited to get into a taxi (huh... who knew?) and our cab driver, Kahn, turned out to be so nice.... he even bet me my cab fare if I could remember a city spot from my childhood before her reached the hotel (I didn't take him up on it... and I was trying to remember the automat). Anyway... he took a brief detour so our daughter could see the empire state building... then brought us to the hotel where he took our picture in front of his cab, and we said goodbye. Oh, and by the way, the cab ride was less than a half hour in from JFK... unheard of.
We got settled, then took a walk along the highline, catching our first view of the Statue of Liberty. So amazing.
On a recommendation from Francine Segan (I spotlighted her torta di mele in my Molto Mayhem section a week ago) we went to Chelsea Market for dinner. It was a perfect meal... Tortolloni with butter sage and a Prosciutto di Parma crostini along with their Panzanella. Both were wonderful.... and ending with a sip of Limoncello was perfect.
It was at this point that we spoke briefly with our server, a nice Italian guy, who put up with my practicing my limited Italian. More importantly, we drew out of him that he was on this season of Master Chef with Gordon Ramsey... and he mentioned we should watch the show tomorrow , wednesday, night, when he would be on it. He left to get our bill, and this is when my daughter decided to get his autograph. She had told us she wanted the autograph of a famous person while she was in NYC and we had looked at her skeptically.... I guess she knew what she was talking about. Not only did he give her a wonderful autograph, he posed for the photo above.
As first days go, it was pretty perfect... especially because it reminded me that trips aren't always about plans, but about being present to the spontaneous events that occur.