So I probably should have stopped at one beer. Enough said, right? Oi vey. And I am quite prepared to hang my father out to dry for my condition this morning. I’d lay some on Mum too, but she was way too jet-lagged yesterday to be any influence whatsoever. So Special K, it’s all on you fella! The old grey mare, she ain’t what she used to be.
Ugh but let’s forget how I feel this morning, just for a second. I would like to pause and declare that Day 1 of our Griswold Christmas Vacation was fantastic, at least as far as I am concerned.
Yesterday morning was a rude shock to my system. Owing to a missed connection in LA, the family vacation got off to a delayed start. But at 12.45am, I discerned the sleepy forms of my parents coming down the escalators into the Arrivals Hall at JFK’s Terminal 3. Hooray, they made it! Our taxi broke the land speed record back to my apartment and we chatted over raisin toast and restorative hot tea, before we decided that 2.30am was probably a good time to go to bed (especially since I had to work on Tuesday). Yikes!
I did indeed make it into the office yesterday morning, albeit a little late. While my parents slept off some more of their jet-lag, I tootled around the office grinning like the Cheshire Cat. Even the lady at the coffee shop in the morning asked me why I was so happy. It was just one of those days for me.
At 1pm, I went down to the UN and met my parents, so I could give them the behind-the-scenes tour. I didn’t even know until a few weeks ago (when Coco & CS came to visit) that I was allowed to conduct these all-access-pass visits. But now that I know, it’s totally on. The parents loved the tour through the UN, even though I did a terrible job at pointing out key points of interest (eg. “This is the Security Council chamber. It is big and it has lots of chairs in it. Oh look, there’s a tapestry!”). It was quite a nice day though, so we took the opportunity to walk behind the UN buildings along the East River. My Dad got quite excited when he saw a squirrel going about its business in the trees outside the UN. For vermin, it was indeed a cute squirrel; fair play to my father on that front.
As far as rallying goes, my parents did a wonderful job yesterday. After the UN tour, we walked back to my office and they continued on to browse the Christmas market at Bryant Park. I got a call from Dad some time later to say that they’d walked back to my apartment to collect his coat, and then they came back to my office to meet me at 5.30pm, like we’d planned. So for two people, brand new to New York and as jetlagged as all hell, they walked 4.2 miles just in the afternoon. Can you believe that?
When we caught up at my office last night, we took the subway to the 9/11 Memorial and had a look around there. The drizzly rain had started to fall, which was a bit disappointing, but Dad observed that it seemed a rather fitting climate for the location. We didn’t stay there too late – just long enough for a quick look-see, and then it was back on the subway and bound for my place.
We stopped off en route at the Heartland Brewery, in the Empire State Building and had some local brews (including a tasting tour of all the local options – some good, some not-so). Mum even tried her first piece of authentic New York cheesecake. Memo to me: at some stage of this trip, take Mum to Junior’s for the REAL deal.
Before calling it a night, we visited Baby Bo’s Cantina and enjoyed the crazy Christmas lights and yet more beers. Ugh it was totally Dad’s influence. Mum sipped a glass of white wine and behaved herself immensely. I even think she enjoyed her mini burrito – I know Dad did. And he likes the idea of being able to order things “on the side”. In this case, it was a heaped bowl of sliced jalapenos. He was in heaven.
When we got home, the Russian doorman embraced both of my parents – and I would have warned them about it, except I didn’t know he was a hugger. We all laughed about it though. We are well taken care of in our building, and my parents have already received a warm welcome from everyone they’ve met so I think they’d agree with me that their holiday is off to a great start.