Monday, June 21, 2010

NYC: Q's birthday trip (yes, from June)

I do know that it is August and Q's birthday is June. I postponed this blog entry when Q got all excited about creating his own blog. See My Adventures. He is planning his next entry on watching the fireworks. That is, the ones he saw back on July 5th. Evidently this delayed posting thing is hereditary.

The birthday trip was another golden day. We took the train from New Haven again. As we walked into the train station, Q began skipping. My heart just swelled up. The kid really knows how to make a treat rewarding.

We've figured out that to enjoy a trip to NYC with a small child, we have to keep our plans very simple. So we had only two objectives for the day: visit the Statue of Liberty, and visit the Alice in Wonderland statue in Central Park.

We were a little naive, however. When we got to the statue of liberty they were making loud, grumpy announcements. You couldn't get tickets for the crown, they were sold out for the day. Worse, you couldn't get tickets to enter the monument (the lower part of the statue). Most intimidating, there was a frequent announcement that the wait was one and a half hours AFTER buying tickets, before getting on the ferry.

Q still wanted to go.

Q was still lovely, even waiting in line for a remarkable amount of time (perhaps not quite 1.5 hours, but still, a long wait).

When we returned to Castle Clinton, there were acrobats performing in the street. They had a terrific banter, and were pretty impressive. Watching them perform, I realized that in NYC, the typical summer weekday is what I imagine a typical summer weekend day anywhere else. There is no avoiding crowds. NYC is always crowded.

We took the subway to Central Park to look for Alice. We overshot the statue with the expectation that we would walk to find her. We should never walk in Central Park without a map. We walked for a ridiculous amount of time (looking for bathrooms, then Alice), despite the meandering and distance, Q only got upset when he thought we were leaving the park. I'm always awed by Central Park. Despite containing thousands of people at any given time, there is a sacredness and a serenity that is breathtaking in the heart of this huge city.

Finally we did find Alice in Wonderland and her many friends. She's meant for climbing on, and we watched Q and other children swarming over her for probably half an hour.

After Q had his fill of climbing, J sat down in front of Alice, and read another chapter of Alice in Wonderland from his ipod.

Q chose to have dinner in Grand Central Station, but he barely touched his dinner, much to my bewilderment. After all the walking we'd done, I was starving, but Q could barely pay attention to his french fries.

Q loves NYC. He did charming things like put his ear to the ground on a street corner to listen for the subway.

On the subway Q distracted himself by leaning over and watching the young man next to him play a video game on an ipod. Amused the heck out of the random young guy and us.

As a parent, you can have wonderful intentions of making a day special for your children. Actually fulfilling those intentions always feels like a miracle.

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