Most epic birthday weekend/week ever. So after coming back from Portland on Monday, I was absolutely good for nothing on Monday afternoon. I took that as my sign to kick back and rest. Tuesday, then, was the day I felt like a chicken with my head cut off - post-PDX laundry, unpacking, errands, and then re-packing for New York!
My flight out was 7:30 on Wednesday morning, and despite leaving 2.5 hours before I needed to even BE there, I was still on the road at 7:15. For a bit, I thought I'd just cut it close, pay a billion dollars for airport parking at LAX and try and run in... and then I gave up and knew I'd have no way of making it. So parked the car off-site, shuttled in and just pleaded my case to the Delta counter. High fives for Delta who hooked me up - they only charged me $50 for the flight change and got me out at 12 noon. There are perks to landing in New York after dark though...
Some pretty magnificent views, that's for sure. After that trip though, we didn't get back to my sister's place until nearly 11:30 so she was ready to crash and I didn't complain. Thursday and Friday my sister had to work most of the day, so I was off to play in the city and entertain myself. First stop: the Highline. The coolest above-ground railroad track turned city park. I walked the entire stretch, including the new extension, so about 20 city blocks in total.
After that, it was off to Times Square just to kill time while I waited for my sister. I'd been through the chaos before, but on this gorgeous Thursday morning it wasn't all that crazy. I stopped in some stores because why not shop? And then I stumbled upon this!
Total random but super awesome! My luck. The rest of the time I spent in Times Square was really just people-watching, checkout the hoards of tourists coming off buses and taking it all in again. One of my life goals (seriously) is to spend New Years Eve in Times Square but the more I say that out loud, the dumber I think I am.
After my sister got out about 4:15, we headed up to the top of Rockefeller (Top of the Rock) for some of the most amazing views of Manhattan, the Statue of Liberty and basically buildings as far as you can see out. It was the perfect day for going 900 feet up and I still can't believe the views you get that high up! Central Park, Ellis Island, and every signature bit in New York are crystal-clear from that high up! Amazing.
Afterwards, we headed back down to dinner and my birthday present from my sister - tickets to Chicago! This was actually Rumer Willis' Broadway debut show and no lie, she is pretty fantastic. I figured with a Dancing with the Stars win that surely she can dance, but she actually belts out a Roxie Hart song pretty well too. A great show, tons of fun and I felt like I was really getting New York in that way! :)
Friday was a quick shakeout through Central Park, just 3 easy miles but lots of touristing, stopping for photos and making sure I took it all in. When my mom, grandma and I came and visited my sister 4 years ago, I did a nice run through the Park in winter too, but this day was so pretty, it felt like a whole different place. Magical even.
Friday afternoon was race expo + meet up fun (more on that soon). But as I wrapped up my run in Central Park (with the photo above), I've never felt so lucky, or so grateful, to get to go on such a trip. My sister was an awesome host and I'm just mad at myself that it took another four years to get back and visit her! Sorry, sister. But thank you for an amazing weekend. Love you!
What other must-do NYC things did I miss that I need to do next time?
And now what you've really been waiting for... my #30thbirthdayblogblowout giveaway winners! Thank you to all 390 entrants for making this my best giveaway ever! Congratulations to Kasey and Stephanie for winning! You'll have an email soon describing your package + info I need from you!
Have a great Tueday, friends! Brooklyn and Long Beach recaps coming later this week as part of my #30halfsfor30years and #BKtoLB shenanigans!