On a Tiny Continent [read: return to Manhattan]

I had to take the bus. I’m not the happiest when it comes to buses, so my return to Manhattan on a bus fell a little short of the homecoming I’d wanted to have. The real homecoming, though, was with the most famous of French models over one of their (belated) birthdays. Yes, Lela back in New York City had celebrated her 21st on a Thursday night and I went down to catch up with her for two days and begrudgingly took a 6:30 AM bus. I hope it’s clear how I feel about buses from now on.

This trip had a few firsts, namely staying with Melissa in Murray Hill. I may have thought my summer digs to be special, a prime location for Boston, but Melissa had it made with a little patio on the side. The four of us reunited, as per usual, over brunch at a new locale for us – Penelope. New York’s brunch specials exceed expectations, even for this pseudo-southerner, with a pretty good plate of biscuits and gravy. This time, the monkey bread for the table was properly portioned for four and matched mimosas and bellinis as we caught up over the past few months; I think it’s the closest to being Sex and the City we’ve ever been as we talked about relationships over brunch in the city as twenty-somethings. Naturally, we cheers-ed to that. I believe the last time we were all together was ringing in the New Year, post-Pineapple Drop. This sure was a long time coming.

This was also the weekend I forgot to bring my Metrocard, so Tiffany helped me become the honorary New Yorker you all know me to be. We attended the exhibit Manus x Machina at none other than the Met(ropolitan Museum of Art). No, I can’t believe either that it was my first time visiting the Met, and yes, it did remind me of Gossip Girl. The exhibit itself was another reunion of Lela and I pointing out Iris van Herpen designs and readily admitting that they were the most eye-catching. I’m not sure how you do it, Iris, but please teach Lela so we can have dresses made out of magnetic morphing too. Or at least a ticket to New York Fashion Week, we’d take that too.

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Does anything compare to Chanel?

And then, what’s to say we didn’t head to the roof for a priceless view of the city? With a suggested donation, the Met is probably the cheapest, most valuable view you will ever get of this tiny continent. Speaking of which, after the Met we went across town to Lela’s apartment to find another priceless rooftop view (comes with a fixed rent, so I guess it is technically priced) paired with a garden. As we sat and chatted, we laughed over the concept of continents just being really big islands. Lela wondered why Manhattan couldn’t just be a tiny continent, and now I’m wondering the same. It might be a really big city, but it is its own little world.

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I love New Yorkers. I know, ironic because I hate rude people.

For the night, Tiffany and I took Lela out to a much-recommended Indian restaurant {newsflash: they both like Indian food and it’s great news to me} past St. Marks. Eating under a ceiling draped with Christmas lights and plastic dolls is best described as quaint but filling. We could only really eat Wafels and Dinges about two hours later [read: too much food tends to be the theme of these weekends] after running into some of Tiffany’s friends. Tiny continent.

The next morning, we met back up all together at The Smith, one of my favorite spots from an earlier trip to Manhattan. Sometimes a girl just needs an avocado toast, no matter how ‘basic’ that might seem to everyone else. Tiffany made a toast this time, halfway through brunch, to our friendship and all I can say to that is, “Hear, hear!” Besides, an East Side brunch was highly necessary with how crowded the West Side was in the morning in honor of NYC Pride. We attended, from a corner about a block past Union Square by 5th, and would like to ask the man wearing a vintage Britney Spears t-shirt to pass that on over as a gift to Lela.

And perhaps the biggest reason for my trip down – gifting Lela her 21st birthday present. Three years ago, I found an authentic gem while thrifting. I’ve held onto it since because I knew it was special, and someone who appreciated it would eventually have it. It didn’t fit me, or you’d know there’d be a blog post about it already. It was none another than a genuine Burberry coat I grabbed as a newly independent Boston resident. And I couldn’t let that go, now, could I? Lela is taller than I am, a fashion major, and has impeccable style. Who else would appreciate the seams? Or the wool-cashmere blend? I had to get this coat to Lela, wrapped in a Burberry coat and authenticated, because it would go to someone truly special since it was so special. I’d say the bus was worth it after seeing the shock on Lela’s face and the slight grin as she said, “Everyone’s going to be so angry. I own a Burberry coat.” Expect pictures soon of her walking down the streets of Philadelphia fabulously during the first snowfall in this coat.

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Of course, Lela is always fabulous.

Yes, I made it back on the bus for my return trip to Boston (albeit taking the last seat on an earlier bus because my bus wasn’t going to arrive for hours, and that’s why I hate buses). There are only a few weeks between this Manhattan weekend and a long overdue Boston weekend as my birthday approaches. Am I excited about moving Lela, Melissa, and Tiffany up to Boston for a weekend? Let’s see how they do, far from the island of Manhattan and on my block next month.

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Signing off, agreeing that one of these days I’ll just stay.

 

 

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