NYC: Day 2 Post Danube

Started the day at the Old St. Patrick’s Church in lower Manhattan. This church’s history starts with Irish immigrants, then Italian, and Chinese. Built over 200 years ago this church was the precursor to the massive St. Patrick’s of 5th Avenue.

The church cemetery was once the burial site of the venerated Pierre Toussant, a candidate for sainthood. St. Elizabeth Ann Seton’s former orphanage is adjacent to the church. Other highlights include Martin Scorsese as a former altar boy, the Godfather being filmed at the church, and Alec Baldwin’s wedding in 2012. But, the main reason for the tour was to view the church catacombs.

These are the only New York City catacombs open to the public. There are also catacombs in Greenwood Cemetery, however closed to the public.

While a bit eerie this was interesting to see. During this time the crypts were sealed as embalming was not done. And, if one can prove title to the church crypts they could potentially be entombed here. Any takers??

On to the show…

Walking back to the hotel Lincoln Center loomed large. While a Monday night in New York tends to be quiet Lincoln Center was alive with the Paul Taylor dancers performing. Securing a ticket I quickly took my seat.

Paul Taylor was one of the great progressive, modern dance choreographers of the 20th century. He founded his dance company in 1954 and created over 150 works. He left us in 2018, however his legacy and vision lives on.

The four dances conducted on this evening were an innovative and interesting frolic in the modern dance style. Pictures are not allowed but the memory of the evening lingers on.

And with that closure to my New York City adventure. See you tomorrow and keep dancing.

Happy Halloween from New York City

Look what I had the good fortune of seeing at the Wednesday matinee.

Great music and dancing with the play told from Otis’ perspective. He began the group and was the surviving member of the original cast which began in the 70’s. New folk are still dancing and singing the songs! If you get the chance take in the play as it’s entertainment value is 5 stars.

Currently am at JFK and boarding soon for the flight to Germany to embark on the Rhine River Cruise. Will keep you posted. Maybe I can do a daily blog as the WP AP seems to be user friendly. 😊. I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

NYC Arrival

Since I had lost 2 precious NYC hours I flew off the bus and located a Chinese restaurant. In Chinatown restaurants are always serving food whatever hour so I quickly found a spot. In this area of Chinatown, near the Manhattan Bridge, I found good food for less money than restaurants farther up Canal Street.

From there I located a massage place as after 11 hours on a bus I became a pretzel. Chinatown massages are wonderful and cost $45 to $50 an hour, plus tip makes it $60 to $65, a true bargain. With massages therapists techniques vary but I’ve never had a bad massage. I have even had one gal actually walk on my back, and I thought this was only in the movies.

After lunch and massage it was time for the afternoon performance of Linda Vista, a new play about a recently divorced male in his 50’s. The play was in previews which means they are working out the kinks and I doubt these kinks will ever be worked out. It was a bomb but you never know so have to give it a try. When the actors went fully nude and were sc—ing like rabbits I knew it was time to call it a day and get out of there.

Leaving the theater I found a perfect day so I walked. This and people watching are two of my favorite things to do while visiting New York. Ending up at Macy’s I decided to check out the shoe department as Amazon had failed in my 3 attempts to find a shoe that fit. Alas, Macy’s was no better but to watch the women go crazy over designer summer shoes for $25. was a hoot.

The 99 cent pizza store was my next stop. Coming prepared with Reynolds Wrap I purchased 5 slices and stashed them in my bag for home. In my eyes this is the best pizza in NYC and there are locations throughout Manhattan. Give them a try.

Back to Chinatown for garlic eggplant with pork at a small restaurant. Friendly and quick service is always a given in Chinatown. Next stop the Chinese bakery for almond cookies, sweet rolls, and other delicacies for home consumption.

And in adjoining Little Italy was the St. Gennaro Festival. This is an eleven day feast in honor of the Patron Saint of Naples, however with all the food you’d think he was the Patron Saint of Pizza.

Church of St. Gennaro

Saint Gennaro was an Italian Bishop who was persecuted for his faith. Though he experienced terrible tortures they had no effect Even when he was thrown in a fire he came out unscathed. When lions were to mall him they stopped in their tracks and would not do him harm. His life was finally ended when he was beheaded.

Money is placed by the statute in the hopes that requests will be granted. Statutes of the Saint along with Saint Anthony are carried through the streets in honor of the feast day.

Keep the September dates open and visit. Be prepared for crowds and much fun and food.

NYC 2019: Puffs and Harlem Jazz

Great show for Harry Potter enthusiasts

On Sunday I started with the world of Harry Potter in a spin off play known as Puffs. While I am not well versed in Hogwart, the audience enthusiasm was penetrating. Some even attended in robes. Bewitching.

Since Sunday night is Broadway black out night I searched for something to do. As usual Expedia found an activity, The Harlem Jazz Tour. Taking a cab north I met the guide and 2 other tourists visiting from China at a Harlem brownstone.

After a short tour of the neighborhood our first stop was the Paris Blues Jazz Club, 2021 7th Avenue. Here we listened to a jazz trio with velvet voices who serenaded us with jazz classics. This club is celebrating its golden anniversary and I can see why. Remember to bring cash for tips as I was ill prepared for this.

Onward to our second club which was particularly interesting as it was housed in the basement of an American Legion Hall. Adult beverages and soul food were served. This basement was standing room only and had a neighborhood vibe, however, folks from all areas of the City were in attendance and taking the mike.

Music was sublime, patrons friendly and the food tasty. You never knew who was stepping out from the audience to display their musical talents and talented they certainly were.

Since we spent most of our time at the second venue we never made it to the third jazz club, however, we passed by, and I have included a picture. This venue had musicians which changed hourly. Another interesting spot and worth the visit to check it out.

With the nights weather at perfection I felt inspired to do one of my favorite New York City tourist attractions, the Statute of Liberty. The subway transfer was easy and quickly I was at the terminal. As the ferry backed out I caught a shot of the lights of Manhattan.

And here she is in all her glory. What an amazing gift from our French friends.

NYC Summer 2019: The Rubin & ABT Le Corsaire

Took a short play break today and visited The Rubin, a museum on Manhattan’s east side. Dedicated to Buddism and Himalayan Art this museum displays the history of Buddism and provides free docent tours. The docent and tour participants were well versed in Buddist culture and by tour end I realized I needed a Dummies Book to better understand the faith.

One thing I did understand was the concept of intention and prayer. Much of the faith is involved in this with daily practice to create good karma. Displayed were many prayer wheels which enhance belief and intention. There was even a computerized intention area where I wrote my intention along with others and left it to the universe. We shall see.

Prayer Wheels explained and actual Prayer Wheel

Buddist Relics

Housed in the former Barney’s Department Store the building was a magnificent recreation and tribute to the Buddist objects displayed. The Buddist Temple and Sacred Door of the temple were a reverent exhibit.

Buddist Altar and Sacred Door

While there pick up a free copy of the annual museum magazine, Sprial. It holds many valuable articles regarding quieting the mind and transforming the self. The gift shop and cafe were also interesting spots to purchase items.

Upon leaving the Rubin I traveled to Lincoln Center for the performance of Le Corsaire. This story of a pirate love for a harem girl was a thrilling ballet with costuming, staging and, of course, dance, impeccably executed. It was 3 hours of perfection and while the story line controversial it now has become my favorite ballet. Hats off to the American Ballet Theater!

Lobby Sculpture

Costumes from Previous Shows on Display in the lobby.

The Lincoln Center Complex has much to offer. Besides opera, plays, ballet, there is a small theater offering independent and foreign films. Also, Julliard School of Music aligns the side of the complex and student performances are available at the school. Google for specifics.

So much to see, so little time..