It’s been over a month since I’ve been home from New York and promised a review of my time in the city. I’d love to be able to blame the big delay on being a work from home mom of a one year old holding down the fort while my husband is either at school or working in the E.R., but there was more than one instance I found myself laying on the couch playing Batman video games while Piper was napping. The inner slacker in me definitely won the month of April, sorry guys.
Now that I got some honesty out of the way, on to the good stuff. Is New York City all that it’s cracked up to be? Yes. ABSOLUTELY.
I’m what you would call “hard to impress”, and I couldn’t help but fall in love with that city. I’m not the most well traveled, but from most of my vacationing experiences I’ve learned that most cities are a little over hyped. Usually by the second day of a trip I just want to go back home to my familiar bed with my flat as a pancake, yet oh so comfortable pillow. If it weren’t for the fact that it’s ridiculously expensive and you have to rely on subways, taxis, or Uber drivers to get around I would be begging my husband to apply for medical school in New York.
After trying to figure out how to start a new paragraph about exactly what I did and what was most memorable to me, blah blah blah… I’ve decided I can explain it best through these eye catching/feel free to skim through bullet points!
NEW YORK PIZZA
There was no way this wasn’t going to be my first topic. I always thought of myself as a veteran pizza eater, or I guess I should say veteran pepperoni pizza eater. Ham? Eh. Sausage? No. Olives? Get out of here. I was so naive. After tasting more New York pizza than I can count on my hands and taking an actual pizza class from real New Yorkers in the Pizza Biz, I now know the pizza secret. Less is more. All the pizza in Vegas is covered in extra cheese, extra sauce, cheese stuffed crust, extra, extra, extra. Turns out, extra is just a way of compensating for inferior ingredients. When you have fresh ingredients, you don’t need nearly as much as the processed junk.
On our first day in NYC one of our Uber drivers told my husband to “stop being dramatic, the cold will toughen you up”. Now I have to admit that telling my husband to stop being dramatic has been my go to line ever since. He’s a good sport though ;). The stereotypical New Yorker is found in abundance. That’s both a great thing and an annoying thing. Uber driver, awesome. Angry middle aged man who ran me over in the crosswalk, not so awesome.
My favorite person in New York was by far was the happiest man I’ve ever met. In Chinatown we met a street painter from Taiwan. My husband lived in Taiwan and was able to have a pretty lengthy conversation with him in Mandarin about life, how pretty his sisters are, and how he studied art while he painted our daughter’s name for us. Seeing Chris surprise Taiwan natives by speaking perfect Mandarin always fills me with Wife-pride. Yeah, that’s a real thing.
Chinatown from Chelsea Nelson on Vimeo.
It looks just as amazing in person as it does in pictures. While there are tons of pushy people who get fed up with tourists stopping to take pictures, it’s worth the crowds. Just be careful of the swarms of Disney characters who will force you into a picture with them and then demand money even though you didn’t want a picture to begin with. Those guys are street tough.
I have to say the art scene is pretty spectacular. And spectacular isn’t a word that frequents my vocabulary. We spent a good amount of time at the Museum of Modern Art seeing a wide variety of different styles and mediums. I will never forget the moment I saw Van Gogh’s original Starry Night. I could go on and on about why I love Van Gogh…
There were of course the occasional head turner that just didn’t work for me, like walking into a dark room with a blank lit up white screen. Seriously? I was also surprised to walk into a room with a not so maze-y cardboard box maze. I definitely won’t be forgetting that one.
And with all the memorable art I saw, the great and the “a little too out there”, I felt the fire to get back to my own art. We got home Sunday night, and I had a painting due for a cat art show on Tuesday. Of course I didn’t have the time to start it until Monday night and somehow spectacularly (there’s that word again) finished it in time. You can check it out in my previous post. Once I got that out of the way I wanted to paint something New York inspired, so I decided I wanted to paint how I felt as a tourist in New York. Since “Katster” was still fresh in my mind I revamped him into “NYC Katster“.
If my ramblings aren’t enough I’ve put together a video of my trip and how it inspired me to create “NYC Katster”. Hope you like it!
NYC Inspires from Chelsea Nelson on Vimeo.