New York was awesome! Oh, it was an adventure, and I'm still working on my journal/diary entry about it, before I forget all of the fun little details. Taking the red eye wasn't the best thing for me to do, as I was worn right out by the time I got to NYC, but it did mean having almost a whole day in New York, rather than arriving at night. Once Ange and I arrived, another friend took us for lunch, and then we wandered around Times Square. We did some shopping in Toys R Us, and then meandered back to the hotel. I had a quick shower and we got ready to go to the Angel On A Leash fundraiser (it was taking place in our hotel). Jackie (my other best friend, as I am lucky enough to have two!) arrived just as Ange and I were leaving the room, so we stepped back in and waited for her. The fundraiser was to raise money for Angel On A Leash, which is a pet therapy group in New York, started by David Frei. We didn't stay long, but we did hear a couple of the past American Idol contestants that were very good. We ended up leaving to go for dinner (a quick meal at Applebee's) before heading to see Wicked. Wicked was amazing, but I knew it would be.
Sunday started late, but was busy. I had somehow scratched my cornea the night before, and then irritated the crap out of my eye by rubbing it. When I woke up Sunday, it was literally swollen shut. At that point I was refusing to go out at all, but after holding a cold can of Diet Coke and a cold cloth on it the swelling receded enough that I was willing to go out. We ended up walking from our hotel up 5th Ave to the edge of Central Park. It was about 50 blocks, round trip. I'm pretty sure that we'd walked close to that much the day prior as well, so I was definitely getting my exercise! We did some shopping at FAO Schwartz, then made our way back towards the hotel along 7th Ave, going through Times Square. We went up the Empire State Building and had all kinds of fun. Sunday Ange left (very sad), but we went for an incredible dinner and then went to see Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (another musical). Steph and I even got pulled up on stage to do some dancing :) After the show Jackie and I walked over to the Waldorf-Astoria hotel to visit with friends of mine, and to see their gorgeous suite. We didn't stay too long, as we were all tired.
Monday was WESTMINSTER!!!!! Day one, and all of the thrill and excitement of the dog show. And the crowds. And my sore, sore feet with the huge blisters. But still . . . . Westminster! We sat and watched Beagles (both sizes), Ridgebacks and other breeds. We went and watched Steph's aunt's Pom show, and then we went for lunch. After lunch we went to Macy's on 7th Ave (right by the hotel) and did some window shopping. Steph wanted shoes, but she couldn't find what she was looking for. We went hung out in a friend's room for a while, just chatting and resting, and then we went and watched the Groups at Madison Square Garden.
Tuesday was THE day. Cockers. On the green carpet. OMG how cool. Jackie and I got up early so we could get to the ring super early to get seats. It is SOOO packed in MSG that if you don't go early and sit through a few breeds, you'll never get seats. We were there at about 9:30am and Cockers showed at 1:15pm. We got seats for the whole group. Watching Cockers was literally a dream come true. I took lots of pictures ( kladckrs.zenfolio.com/p5
), and I soaked it in.
Once Cockers were done we wandered through the benching area. What a gong show! It was PACKED with people, dogs, crates, people, people, people . . . you could practically pick up your feet and let the crowd move you along. It was hot and uncomfortable, and my feet were so freakin' sore. Those blisters from Sunday were really bugging me. Once we got done what we needed to, we went outside, got some cabs and went for supper. We went to a place called Jack's and the food was good. The service was brutal, but the food was good. I had fried mozzarella (fresh mozza) that was to die for. Then we went back to MSG for the show. Steph and those guys took a cab, and Jackie and I walked (cabs were really hard to come by). My friends snagged me a press pass so I got to watch the Sporting Group from the FLOOR!!!!! It was very cool. But my feet were very sore, and so once the Sporting dogs were done, I went back up to the seats. Jackie and I watched half of the next group (I can't even remember which group it was - how sad is that?), and then a friend texted that they were hanging out in the room with her dog, and that we could come back if we wanted to. So Jackie and I headed back to the hotel. It was way more comfortable than our seats, and the TV provides a way better view than being up in the stands. We had some food and watched and we enjoyed the dog's company, which was the best part of all. He is such a fabulous dog - very sweet and silly and fun.
Our friend left on Wednesday morning . . . Jackie and I saw her off and then wandered down 7th Ave into the Chelsea area (I think). We were looking for somewhere to eat, but there weren't a ton of restaurants down there. A lot of them were very dirty, hole-in-the-wall places that neither of us were brave enough to try. We ended up checking out a few stores and then we found the Treats truck ( www.treatstruck.c
). We both bought all kinds of goodies there and enjoyed them immensely. Then we wandered back up 7th Ave, went for lunch and then spent some time in the hotel. I went through my stuff and organized my suitcases and Jackie went to the gym and spent some time on the machines. After that Jackie and I took a car down to Battery Park, which is where Ground Zero is, as well as the ferry to the Statue of Liberty. We didn't take the ferry across, but I did take some night pictures of Lady Liberty. I think they turned out pretty cool. We wandered around trying to find somewhere to eat, but apparently Wednesday was not our day. We eventually chose TGIFridays. Then we took a cab back to the hotel and called it a night.
Thursday was travel day . . . uneventful, long and exhausting. But I made it home in one piece, and spent a few days recovering before the poop hit the fan again with my dad falling and then Ange's dad passing away. I'm pretty sure I'm still recovering from everything, including NYC, even though it's been a month now. It was a lot to deal with over a relatively short time period.
But truly, it was everything I imagined it would be and more. It was the trip of a lifetime, and I'm so thrilled that I got to go!