Saturday, September 24, 2005

A Lasting Visit to NYC

Thursday and Friday I took off and made a small holiday of it in New York. “One cannot say good-bye to the east coast without saying good-bye to NYC too,” according to my friend Eric. So off I went to do the two things I have always wanted to do there, but have not done. But first things first…

After a grueling train ride (Amtrak really needs overhauling), I arrived at Penn Station just in time to meet my friend Poodle and his boyfriend, Jeff, for a light dinner at Chipotle (eating healthy these days and a black bean burrito seemed to hit the spot). It was important for me to see Poodle so that he could see that I was well and healthy. He, like some other friends who live in other cities, had some difficulty adjusting to my recent health debacle because of the very logical assumption that something could have happened to me in the small hospital at my parents’ house and he would never have known it. Even though I speak of my friends all the time, the only people my family ever remembers are Jeff (my best friend of 15 years who lives near my parents) and Ashley (my roommate of the last 4 years). Neither of them knows all of my other friends, so if something were to happen to me, I guess there would be someone left “out of the know”. And Poodle thought he would be one of those people.

Sidebar: Poodle’s real name is Michael. He and I met online about 4 years ago and became instant soul mates. He was just ending a 15-year relationship with someone and I was just recovering from my stroke. Since speaking was still a little challenge, online became my favourite way to communicate. I am not sure how or why I nicknamed Michael “Poodle”, but I did and it stuck. He refers to himself as Poodle when he speaks or emails me and signs his emails as “Your Little Lap Dog”.

Friday night I spent with another friend named Michael – this one I have nicknamed Bam Bam (there are so many Michaels in my life I HAVE to nickname them to keep them all straight, err… I mean… in order). Bam Bam was my partner in crime to the two things I went to NYC to do: go to the top of the Empire State Building at night, then follow that up with a visit to Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum on 42nd Street (clearly, I am a dork).

We snaked through the long line inside the building and hit the roof just as it began to rain. I tried taking some pics of the city, but the flash on my digi just wasn’t strong enough and everything looked like it was on fire (was had a little laugh at the fact that the pic of “Queens was all aflame”). Then we hit the wax museum and we had some fun having our pictures snapped with Brad Pitt, Susan Sarandon, RuPaul, The Dahli Lama, and Christopher Reeve (I would say that Bam Bam is a Superman fanatic, except fanatic is not a strong enough word). Dinner in Chelsea was followed by a visit to the new 8th Avenue bar “Gym”, which looks A LOT like JR’s in DC, and then we called it a night.

Not sure when I will head back to the Big Potato (รก la Rose on The Golden Girls), but it is so cool to have friends like Poodle and Bam Bam for the times when I have/will visit(ed). These are just two of the people in my life that help make life worth living, and its so easy to be strong when you can channel your strength through such great people.