Day 21: The incident

Originally our last day. But the events of the last 24 hours have changed that. Mardi is showing some signs of improvement as we finish our packing.

Even though our flight has been delayed three days, our room in the AKA isn’t available, so we need to move today and again tomorrow. It’s annoying, but no big deal. We were essentially packed ready for our flight home. So some adjustments to grab some clothes and toiletries is all that is needed.

At around 11am we swap rooms. The team at the AKA have been delightful. So realise how sick Mardi has been and are attentive and helpful as we battle the last few days. Once settled in our new room, 395.  We were in 908. We have a discussion about the different rooms in the hotel and where we have stayed. This is our ninth stay here and we’ve only had the same room twice. Where will we be tomorrow?

Mardi is feeling up to a walk and some fresh sir, so we go to the east side, Turtle Bay Area and explore the architecture. It’s located in the 50s, 50th St to 59th St and across to the East river. We find some interesting things.  Buildings with spider webs, and a spider as security, hidden park. We sit and watch dogs frolicking as Mardi rests. We search for turtles, to no avail. Find an elephant in the gardens at the United Nations. It’s vanity bush covering a large appendage. We lunch at PJ Clarke’s, a 120 year old pub. It’s still in its original form, old toilets and phone booth inside remain as they were 120 years ago. The outside red brick building is dwarfed by the skyscrapers on either side. We sit, rest snd enjoy a nice lunch. Steak, burger and chips. After lunch we catch the cross town bus and get the subway home. Normally we’d walk, but not today.

We get home and settle in for a while.

I head out to buy some chocolate for the hotel staff as a thank you. Normally a quick trip, 8 blocks to 52nd St Lindt. But it takes me 40 minutes. I need to pass both the Rockefeller Christmas tree, which was lit last night and the Saks on 5th Ave Christmas lights display. The sidewalk is jam packed with people craning their necks for a view, selfie sticks cross like swords in battle as people strive for a better photo. I join the throng of people snd wend my way through the crowd. I get to Lindt and grab a bag.

I stop to cross  52nd at 5th to avoid the crowd on my return trip. This is where the incident on 52nd St happened. What incident?

As I was waiting to cross 5th, with the lights I see a policeman wave me across. At the busy intersections there are police stationed to aid the flow of traffic. So I see him wave at me, I walk across 5th. It’s wide, 5 lanes of traffic all flowing downtown, on my right. I step down the curb and start walking, no hurry, a policeman has just waved me across.

Next thing he yells at me again.  Have I done something wrong I ask myself as I realise I’m the only one crossing the street.

As I look I see five lanes of traffic coming at he, I’m in lane 3. The middle of the road. Frozen. Now what?

He’s yelling again.

A bus and trunk honk simultaneously as they approach me. I’m now facing them, which way to go? 

The policeman yells again “move or die!”

I trot across the rest of the road, hoping lanes four and five were either turning right or a bus lane with no bus. I reach the other side in one piece.  I look back, the policeman is still waving at traffic as people cross in the other direction, seemingly I’m forgotten.

I shove my hands in my pockets and with my head down disappear down 52nd St. I walk across to Broadway, turn left and head back downtown to 44th.

I pop into Ben and Jerry’s for some chocolate therapy and grab hot chocolates to take home. When I get home Mardi is resting. We have some dinner, left overs from the last couple of nights.

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