Friday was our last day. Our plane left in late afternoon, and hotel checkout wasn’t required until noon, so we dilly-dallied around in the morning, taking a subway ride down to 72nd Street to (a) find an ATM for our bank and (b) find breakfast.
Breakfast was at Utopia Restaurant on Amsterdam. It was delicious. Please notice the tiny baby juice glasses. We were served juice in these itty bitty plastic tumblers everywhere we went for breakfast. They’re just so cute! Then we wandered up and down the street for a while in search of our bank. Turns out the ATM wasn’t at a bank branch at all, but inside a Duane Reade store.
These stores are ubiquitous in Manhattan. I had never heard of them before we arrived, but it seemed like every time we turned around, we saw one. They were quite handy, though. I had accidentally left my reading glasses at home, so Day 1 found us inside the store across the street from our hotel buying new reading glasses and bottled water for our long walk down to Times Square. And we were in and out of the store for in-room snacks and more bottled water throughout the week. (That Google image above is interactive, by the way. You can move it around to see the neighborhood surrounding our hotel.)
In case you were wondering, we left the dinosaurs back in the hotel room for this little excursion. They did most of the packing while we were gone. Very efficient, those dinosaurs. We finished up what was left, and called the bellman to come take our luggage downstairs.
Did I mention that our hotel didn’t have an elevator? And we were on the fourth floor? Yes, Virginia, that does mean that every single day, after wearing ourselves to the bone walking around playing tourist, we had to drag our tired carcasses up four flights of stairs to our room. Four narrow flights of stairs, at that. It also means that the bellman was allowed the privilege of carrying both suitcases, one of them massive, up and down those narrow flights of stairs. Don’t worry, he was tipped well.
Since our flight didn’t leave until 6:00 PM, we were going to check out but leave the luggage at the hotel while we wandered around some more, and then take Uber to the airport in mid-afternoon, but the bellman told us we could catch a bus just a couple of blocks up the street that would take us directly to our terminal, and we could use our subway transit passes to pay for it. He checked the schedule for us, and the next bus to LaGuardia left in about 30 minutes. After a brief consult — “Do you want to see anything else?” “No, not really, I’m kind of tired of walking around and looking at stuff.” — we decided we were really tired of Manhattan and were ready to get started on our outbound trip. So we dragged our luggage up to 106th Street and caught the bus.
Said bus took us through Harlem, right past the Apollo and other landmarks. I didn’t have my camera or my phone out, so we didn’t catch any photos as we drove through. Here’s another interactive Google image, though.
We got to the airport about five hours ahead of our flight, so we wandered around, ate lunch, read, played on our phones, and killed time chitchatting while we waited for our plane to board. The flight back to Atlanta was uneventful, as was picking up our car from long-term parking and making the short drive home. One of the advantages of living in a major metro area like the ATL is we’re less than 20 minutes away from the airport. Still, we were exhausted when we arrived at the house and went straight to bed.
The next morning, while we picked up the critters from the kennel (that was a shock to the wallet), the dinosaurs headed back into the jungle, there to await their next trip. So long, dinos; we’ll see you again soon, I hope.
People have asked me what was the best part of this trip. Naturally, seeing all the things in person that I had only ever seen in photographs or movies or TV ranks really high, but truly, the best part was spending an entire week doing stuff with my husband and remembering that, not only do I love him, I really truly do like him. Here’s to many more anniversary trips, honey. I love you bunches.