Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Rock Center Tree and Dyker Heights - A little more holiday stuff.

Karen's on her way back to Texas now after a great visit, everything worked out nicely and it was so nice to see her again after a long time! We'd gone separate ways on Christmas Day, TQ and I had already accepted an invitation to dinner at his parents' home before I knew she was coming, and although she would've been more than welcome, she was really enjoying seeing NYC in all its holiday finery, and also had a whole laundry list of restaurants she wanted to get to, so she stayed down here, and then we got a couple more seasonally-festive things in later in her visit too. Her last day in Manhattan was on Sunday; that's when we saw my friends at VolvoTango on the pier, and after a long walk around various areas in lower Manhattan, we headed for Rockefeller Center to see the tree.

I think that of everything we did while she was here, that was about the only thing we might have skipped given a do-over - it was lovely and warm and the weekend and not too late at night and that area was mobbed like I'm not sure I've ever seen it before. Seriously, you could've populated a fairly respectable small town somewhere with the people present. We shouldered our way in, looked at the tree, looked towards the Teuscher store, decided it wasn't worth the trouble of getting there (we'd had a big, late brunch, and the walking areas on either side of the skating rink in front of the tree were absolutely jammed with people who didn't appear to be moving at all), shouldered our way back out, and called it a night. I did get some nice tree pictures though. 

The next day I went to work while Karen did some more solo sightseeing. She met me at work at the end of the day and then we met TQ at Purple Yam (she'd originally hoped to go to Onomea, the terrific Hawaiian place in Williamsburg, but they're closed on Mondays, but some good Pinoy cuisine was an acceptable substitute, mmmm adobo) and then after dinner, although the temperature was dropping and a drizzle with a bit of ice in it was starting up, TQ was a good sport, nay a great sport, and drove us out to see the famous holiday lights of Dyker Heights. Going on a cold (well, slightly colder than it has been) and sleety night after a long stretch of semi-tropical (or at least they felt that way compared to normal winter weather) temperatures turned out to be a great way to see these world-famous displays; this is a pretty well-off neighborhood, the residents who go in on the annual extravaganza actually hire decorating companies to do their displays, and according to a couple of articles (like this one) about the illuminated displays, the neighborhood draws around 100,000 visitors per year - but we were one of a very small numbers of sightseers to brave the first frozen-ish precipitation of the season. 

Here are some photos - that's it for the write-up, click on the first one to get to a slideshow view. 


Cathy said...

First, I didn't know you lived in or near NYC b/c I live in Northern NJ. Second what is VolvoTango ? Third, what a great time (and pics) you had in Manhattan! How lovely to spend it with your sister. Sweet memories.

We didn't go in this year because I'm tired of the crowds but oh, how I miss it!

bonnie said...

Yeah, been living here since 1991, I think it was. It's funny, my mom's from Basking Ridge and my dad's from Philadelphia, but my dad's Navy career took him out west, where I mostly grew up in Hawaii. I sort of moved to NYC on a whim after college, but it was a whim that stuck like glue. I miss the islands terribly, if I won the lottery (unlikely since I hardly ever buy lottery tickets) or if somebody were to magically offer me a full-time job with benefits I would be tempted to give life there a go, but it's not all sunsets and beaches and mai tais out there, and life here has worked out to be pretty darned good.

The crowds in Rockefeller Center were absolutely ridiculous but that was the only thing we did during my sister's visit that I would say was a bit of a bust. Everything else was good fun!

VolvoTango is a bunch of people who like to dance the tango and get together to dance once a week (I think) in various indoor and outdoor locations. My paddling friends Steve and Gracie and Derek are regulars, with Steve being one of the main instigators, I think (he's always on the lookout for fun places for his dancing friends to dance). They mostly coordinate through their Facebook page. VolvoTango facebook group.

Rob K said...

I did the Dyker Heights route again this year with my sister. Nothing quite like it!