I had an extra day on my layover in New York so I seized the opportunity to head into Manhattan for the day. It worked out that Richie was able to come as well, which meant I went only four days without seeing him during my trip as opposed to the entire eight days.
I took an Uber to Beacon Station and headed south to Grand Central in about 90 minutes. It uses Metro North, the same line I take from New Haven to get to the City, but these ones didn’t seem to be as new as ours, as the seats were less comfortable and there were no outlets in the cars. So I basically played a game all day with my phone battery to see how long it would last while I took pictures and attempted to find places to see. This was also the day I invested in a portable battery charger (which only had a small amount of juice when I bought it so it still didn’t help my phone charge up much).
We headed to the edge at the seaport to check out some bars and to watch the ferries come in. While at an outdoor patio bar, drinking $10 shots (it was Mezcal but still, way overpriced!) we met a Brazilian woman who photographed her journeys by always including a little figurine of a stiletto. I love the idea and have been entertaining the idea of doing something similar for a long time now. Kind of like a Travelocity gnome (or if anyone has seen the movie Amélie, that gnome works too). I tried something like that my first semester of college with my teddy bear, but never kept up with it. Keep an eye out for it in the future, I may decide to restart it.
I don’t even remember the name of the outdoor bar. It had a Chase Sapphire Rewards lounge next to it and it was near a Big Gay Ice Cream truck. Unfortunately I can’t remember much else about it because it was less than memorable besides serving very weak drinks for high prices. Next!
We then walked to the end of the pier where it seemed most of the ferries came to dock or at least passed on their way to dock. Watermark Bar has a huge outdoor seating area directly on the water with options to both sit and relax with some food and drinks or, seemingly, to just chill on the deck chairs without a care in the world. This time we both got spiked lemonades (one mango, one sour cherry) and enjoyed lounging on the large couch on the back of the patio. It was a gloomier day, very humid due to the after effects of the hurricanes moving northward, so watching the sunset wasn’t an option this day, but a nicer day would have seen a beautiful one moving over the Brooklyn Bridge.
Starting to feel nice from lack of food since breakfast, we headed back towards Midtown to get some food closer to Grand Central so Richie could make sure to catch the train back to New Haven for work.
We were originally looking for a speakeasy I had read about that we both decided looked cool, but it was impossible for us to find the entrance (we later learned its inside the hot dog place we thought about going into, but decided against). Next time we go back we’ll remember and see if it’s worth it. Instead of this, we went to almost the end of St. Marks Place (this entire street and the surrounding streets are packed with restaurants, mostly catered to the college crowd due to NYU being nearby, so have fun checking as many out as possible) to Ten Degrees Bar. It is a small and darkened place that looked cozy, if empty when we got there. However, by the time we left it was incredibly packed and lively with dancing and music.
We got a corner table just as they were dimming the lights and bringing candles to the tables, making a wonderful ambiance for my date. We shared a couple drinks each and ordered a mixed charcuterie plate with sausage, jamon, goat cheese, and olives. The cheese was fresh and soft and served with a jam that I believe was raspberry.
I hate olives. I think they taste like vinegar and I can’t understand why people like them. I can tolerate olive oil on my bread or pasta but I need to add salt, pepper, and cheese so that could be what makes it tolerable. I tried the Castelvetrano olives here and did not hate them, I actually ate a handful of them. They weren’t vinegary, they were sweet and were delightfully firm. It was as if they had just been picked off a Sicilian vine that day. The portion size was hefty as well, it was as if an entire jar had been handed to us. Sharing these along with the meat and cheese surely hit the spot for a more sophisticated dinner.