Friday, October 23, 2009
We got to New York and took one of our monster long walks through the Upper West Side. Bruce estimates that we may have walked eight miles all together. First we walked through Central Park and then north on Central Park West. Then all the way back to our hotel at Columbus Circle.
Gourmet cupcakes are a huge deal in New York, to the extent that I've been reading about them on line, in magazines, and have even seen cupcake cookbooks in the bookstores. I confess to coveting these cupcakes. Coveting them, I tell you.
Imagine my gratification when I stumbled upon (my feet were getting pretty tired) Crumbs...the definitive cupcake place that started the entire craze. Oh my GOODNESS! I had a red velvet cupcake that you can see in the picture above and Bruce had a raspberry swirl. Sublime...that says it all.
This is where we had dinner this evening. I had a fabulous panini sandwich and Bruce had a turkey burger. The Colseum is about four doors down from our hotel. It was so blustery in between the buildings this evening that my umbrella blew inside out. Fortunately, I had my black trench coat and wrapped myself up in a very cool scarf I bought near the Plaza Hotel from a street vendor. Five bucks. We were happy to find something close by our hotel.
The top of this building is residential space, with two store front windows and an awning indicating the restaurant. It is a very cozy space down three steps to the basement level, with the interior wall the orginal restored brick. Folks there looked to be a local crowd and not tourists, which suited us just fine.
We were walking toward MOMA (Museum of Modern Art) and stumbled upon this homage to one of my favorote actors, Jerry Orbach. Jerry was a Broadway actor for many, many years, but is best known to audiences as Detective Lennie Briscoe of Law and Order. A recent poll by TV Guide determined that 72% of all Law and Order fans judged Jerry to be their favorite actor in the 20-year series.
Jerry was also Frances "Baby" Houseman's father in another favorite of mine, Dirty Dancing. Sadly, both Jerry and Patrick Swayze, two stars of Dirty Dancing, have passed away from cancer, God rest their souls.
Vincent Van Gogh's amazing work, Starry Night, also hangs at MOMA. I guess I was the only person on planet Earth who didn't realize that the pop song, "Starry, Starry Night" was about this painting until about three years ago.
The song played through my mind today as I gazed upon Vincent's work, the thick paint layed on with a palette knife and thought of his despair, his letters to his brother, Theo, and the fact that he was never recognized during his lifetime for the genius that he was. The despair he felt finally led to him taking his own life, which is the subject of this poignant song. If only he had waited for the fullness of time to show him all that God had planned.
As I saw the school children sitting in a circle today, enraptured by the words of a young, red-headed docent with wildly curling hair about this painting, I thought of those lyrics..."They did not listen, they did not know how, perhaps they'll listen now. All those children were listening...
Starry, starry night.
Paint your palette blue and grey,
Look out on a summer's day,
With eyes that know the darkness in my soul.
Shadows on the hills,
Sketch the trees and the daffodils,
Catch the breeze and the winter chills,
In colors on the snowy linen land.
Now I understand what you tried to say to me,
How you suffered for your sanity,
How you tried to set them free.
They would not listen, they did not know how.
Perhaps they'll listen now.
Starry, starry night.
Flaming flowers that brightly blaze,
Swirling clouds in violet haze,
Reflect in Vincent's eyes of china blue.
Colors changing hue,
morning field of amber grain,
Weathered faces lined in pain,
Are soothed beneath the artist's loving hand.
For they could not love you,
But still your love was true.
And when no hope was left in sight
On that starry, starry night,
You took your life,
as lovers often do.
But I could have told you, Vincent,
This world was never meant for one
As beautiful as you.
To see a slide show of Vincent's paintings and Don Maclean's haunting song, click here:
Bruce and I are vacationing in New York City, following a wonderful time enjoying fall leaves in Connecticut. We had many little adventures, not the least of which has been that the report from my wonederful eye doctor, Dr. Gaudio, was fantastic. I went North thinking that I would have to have surgery in my right eye, following the repair of my left. What I found instead was that I received an excellent report, needed to come back in six months instead of three months and advised to, "keep doing what I've been doing." My eyesight has improved from 20/70 with contact lenses to 20/40...not too far away from perfect at 20/20.
Our pictures are all over the place, in the digi-cam, in the cell phone, and on the hard drive, so I won't be posting the trip in chronological order.
We're at our beloved Hudson Hotel in New York City:
I'll do a number of other entries, but right now I want to share about listening to that small, still voice within which is the Holy Spirit. One of my favorite paintings on earth is called Christina's World by the New England painter, Andrew Wyeth. I'm not specifically sure why I love it so much. It is poignant, to be sure. It evokes a sense of longing as I look at it, as well as a sense of triumph over personal struggle. The model for this picture was a neighbor of Mr. Wyeth's who was disabled due to polio. I also love the faded pink thirties-era dress.
Bruce and I visited the Museum of Modern Art today. There are many treasures there that I enjoyed communing with, not the least of which were Monet's water lillies, a self-portrait by Frieda Kahlo, and the exquisite "Starry Night" by Vincent Van Gogh. But Christina and her world remain my very favorite. I had no idea that this painting was at MOMA.
We reached the top floor and Bruce hit the button for the elevator for the ground floor after we'd finished looking at the art on the top floor. But that still, small voice said quietly, deep within, "You will miss something, take the escalator." And sure enough, as we turned the corner, there was Christina. I almost missed her.