New York in July for my 30th – Part 1

This year I turned the big 30 and decided to celebrate it with a little trip to NYC. The awesome part was that I used a bunch of reward points that I gathered throughout all of last year to pay for the flights and the hotel and of course I brought my wife along with me 🙂 I’m hoping that I can do the same thing with my vacation next year but only time will tell if I can accomplish this.

The flight to NY was pretty un-eventful, just the normal hub bub of flying on Delta (I love having Gold status) up to LGA. I decided to splurge a bit and used the limo service that my company has a contract with to take us to the hotel. I trust them more than I do the run of the mill NY taxi and the rate was pretty decent in comparrison. The first thing to hit my nose when I exited was the lovely smell of NYC trash heated to perfection by the summer heat. HA! It’s a smell that I don’t think I’ll ever forget in my lifetime because its just so familiar to me. Anyway the limo brought me over to the Waldorf=Astoria where I booked my room for the week. I burned every Hilton point I had to stay there but I would say it was worth it. Now the cool part about having insane amount of points with Hilton is the Diamond status I have. We arrived at the hotel in the afternoon and there were a ton of people waiting for reception, now with Diamond status I didn’t even care because there was a special Diamond Reception desk that I was allowed to use. Not only did I check in faster than the people already in line, I got an upgraded room and an early check in…. SWEET!!

I think at about this time we were getting a bit on the hungry side (I might get these events mixed up a bit since it was a week ago already), but I really wanted to eat some Malaysian food at Penang which is one of my favorite spots in NY. When we were in NY last time, my wife and I went to the one near Washington Square Park so thinking it was still there we took the subway down to get some food. Much to our dismay, Penang was no longer in Washington Square Park. After using Google Maps on my phone, I found out that the one on 82nd and 2nd Ave was still open but it was quite a hike even by subway. Of course we went to 82nd and 2nd Ave for food! The food was excellent and I had all of my favorites. By the end of the meal I was fully stuffed!

After eating we decided to do a little exploring up 5th Ave. 5th Ave has all the high end shops and what not but also some spots that we wanted to visit. 2 places that stick out in my mind are World of Disney and FAO Schwartz. World of Disney was pretty cool. I have a few pictures from there and the art work that they were selling in the gallery upstairs was very cool, I was quite tempted to buy something but would have no way of taking it home. My wife took a silly picture of me in a Mickey Mouse “I Love NY” hat and I took one of her in an apron. After playing around in there for a bit we move further up 5th Ave to FAO Schwartz. My wife and I have some pretty fond memories of FAO when we were younger. It was the premier toy store back in the day but it looked like the shell of its former self after the hard economic times that have been around for the past decade. The huge clock in the entrance way was missing as well as all of the Gund stuffed animals. We primarily went there for some ice cream but was sad to note that it was replaced by a candy store. We didn’t stay all that long because we were so sad about the changes.

Outside of FAO is the new Apple Store (the big glass cube one) and noticed that there was a line. I took a pic of both the store and the line just for kicks. I originally thought that the line was to get into the store but my friend Luan told me that the line was for getting an iPhone. I didn’t think that people were STILL waiting in line for that phone but I guess I was wrong so looking at that picture amuses me when I see it side by side with the picture of the store.

The rest of the evening was taken up by un-packing our luggage and resting from all the walking and the flight that we took to get to NY. The next day was more exciting since it was my big birthday! So far being 30 isn’t so bad, its like being in my 20’s but I just can’t say I’m in my 20’s anymore. Well, I’ll blog tomorrow if I have the time with a chronicle of July 22nd’s events.


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