Big Apple……Gigantic Bite

A friend recently gave me a priceless gift by allowing me to move into his New York apartment while he is on long world journey.  I am writing this post from Manhattan and have about 30 more days do devour this area as another Camino unfolds in my life.  Once again, I have placed myself in an environment where most things are on the edges of my comfort zones.

I arrived last Wednesday at Laguardia  around 1:30, moved into the 18th floor midtown apartment by 2:30, and found groceries at Gristedes by 4:00.   On my first night in town, I went to see Phantom of the Opera on Broadway.  I am not a fan of opera but realized that there must be a reason that this is one of the longest running shows.  Taking a chance provided a great night of entertainment.  I walked home through Times Square and went to sleep to the sounds of endless honking and sirens.

On the second day, I spent 4 hours walking through Central Park.  The silence and serenity does not match the brain bombardments that surround each step on the concrete.  Next, I found myself at 85th and Lexington to preview New York Hot Yoga.  The studio is perfect for my needs and they offered me a $99 unlimited membership for my time in town.  After lunch, I bough a subway card and joined the Mercedes Club Gym to satiate my weight and cardio requirements.  I topped the night off with a party at the local REI.  The CEO was there along with an open bar, a DJ, and a trail mix buffet.

Day three began with a subway ride back to Lexington for my first hot yoga class. The practice was awesome and the locals welcomed me with open arms.  I took a 2 hour nap in the afternoon and ventured back to Broadway for the evening. Something Rotten is a new show and I could not stop laughing.  My seat neighbors were a father and daughter from CA that were in town for her choir performance at Carnegie.  This fine young lady is going places!

I began Saturday at hot yoga taught my Sophie.  She gave one of the best explanations for how to stay present by saying, “When each thought comes into the mind, watch is come in, label it as either past of present, and let it drift and dissolve out of the head without any attachment.”  I am taking her a copy of my book as a gift on my next visit.  I spent the afternoon walking from Central Park to the 9/11 memorial.  Along the way, I did the New York Highline Walk.  A beautiful park built on an old elevated railway.   Four hours disintegrated on this walkabout.

On Easter Sunday, I took a subway into Harlem and met eleven strangers from the NY Chapter of American Pilgrims on the Camino.  We did a 16 mile Caminito from the GW Bridge to Hoboken .  After the walk, we enjoyed tapas at Lola’s in NJ.  Just like Spain, the diversity and life stories were all over the map.  A short train ride brought us back to Manhattan where a cab took us to Chinatown for hour long foot massages.  It was one of the best Easters of my entire life.

I am filled with gratitude and cannot wait to see what happens over the next 30 days.