Subject: First Installment from The Amigas in New York
Hello Ziners: Instead of a link to my write-up someone suggested that I do it in installments. So here is the first part. Keep in mind we are no spring chickens and it was tough going but if anything, determination we had.


Another trip, another adventure. This one came out of the blue. Never did I ever think I would get to New York! A friend (Marion) called and asked if I would like to see Julio Inglasis in person. Well! I didn't hear of him coming to Nova Scotia but immediately said "Yes"! "Well, he's in New York", says she ........Okey-dokey!!! After finding out the particulars - like spending 5 days there - wonderful husband that I have, says - go for it! So with much anticipation, we set off for the City that never sleeps! And believe me, it's true! A third friend, Marilyn, was joining us too. A neighbour of Marion's who I barely knew, but would get to know a lot better by the end of the trip!

Had a great flight, once we got in the air that is....turned out there was an electrical problem and we had quite a wait.They had to phone to Dallas for help! (gulp)..Flying first time, American Eagle. On our arrival at JFK, seven travelers including us, hired a shuttle to take us to our various Hotels. The driver was a young fellow that took us on a joy ride for an hour and 1/2! We had arrived at 8:00 AM in the middle of morning traffic. I was amazed at the number of yellow cabs! They were everywhere - and the honking!! Not wanting to get caught in slow moving or non-moving traffic, the driver took every detour he could, driving at an incredible speed, whizzing in and out of traffic lanes (and dodging people!) ! We were all holding our breath - not a peep out of us. Collectively, we would exhale as one - after several near misses! I do not know why we didn't get into a major accident but I do have to admit, grudgingly, that he had complete control of the van. We skipped in and out of lanes, up and over rough detours, skimmed the bumpers and back ends of other cabs, and all the while, the drivers honking at each other and us praying...sweet jesus, save us from this idiot!! (sorry to anyone offended by this) God! what an experience! How we arrived in one piece I'll never know. We even forgot to tip him...but I wonder, for what? Almost getting us killed? One passenger said "Can I open my eyes now?". Someone up front asked during the ride, "Anyone want to switch seats"? Oh yeah...that was me..... But you know a strange thing? It was scary, but exhilarating! Like one of those big rides in Disneyworld. Isn't this what we always heard of about New York? (I must be crazy)....

Our hotel was small, very old, but very clean and beautiful with all the gilt on the ceiling, around mirrors, doors and hallways. It was 100 years old and in those days, *gilt* must have been in. We had sort of a suite. A small room for me, and the larger room for the other two, who were smokers and it worked out fine. There was an itty-bitty bathroom for little people, but somehow we would manage. We all felt we would be quite comfortable here. Muffins and coffee every morning, a little gift shop for making tour and theater plans, but no restaurant within the hotel. The only bad thing was construction going on right across the street.

It took only minutes to get settled in and then we were OFF! We were staying on 3lst Street and 5th Avenue, right in the middle of Manhattan, about two blocks from the Empire State Building. Our first day was walking from there to 58th Street, almost to Central Park---AND BACK!! We figured out it was about 10 miles of walking! Heads were swiveling right and left, so much to see! Marilyn said she was looking up so much she figured it was as good as a neck lift! Then came Tiffany's (unbelievable!!), Trump Tower , Rockafeller Centre, etc. and hotels like the Marriott, the Plaza, Waldorf Astoria. And the fashion giants....

Noticed at every-high end shop along 5th Avenue, there were handsomely dressed men at the doors as security, and all through the shops as well. I made the mistake of trying to take my friends' pictures on the stairs winding up to the second floor at Tiffiny's only to have two security men rushing and waving at us. Since we are unacustomed to this, Marilyn said "Oh, this is nice. Do you think they want a date?" lol! That girl sure has a dry wit...kept us in stitches the whole time.

There were sales everywhere up to 70% off due to the Columbia Day Holiday I guess. It was a fun day and we came home around 6:00 after a quick supper at a Deli and collapsed into bed at 7:00! I kid you not! We had been up since 3:00 AM. My feet burning, joints aching, I practically went into a coma!

In the middle of the night, I woke to this horrible, screeching, deafening noise (Marilyn thought I was talking about her snoring!) but no, it was a CEMENT MIXER directly below MY window! I couldn't believe this! Then I looked at the clock, it was 10:00 PM!!!! Both Marilyn and Marion were sound asleep! Good grief...

More tomorrow... Nancy