It just won’t go away. Mardi wakes again feeling less than ideal. It’s our last full day in the Big Apple and she is determined to get out. Although we’ve taken it reasonably easy the last 9 days or so, we’ve ramped up again over the last day or so. Mardi has done a great job planning interesting walks for us, probably our favourite thing to do. We just pick an area and go. Along the way Mardi has maps tagged with a host of interesting things we find during the year as we research our trip.
Just like yesterday where we found old manhole covers and weird carvings in buildings, today is another good day. We start at Tompkins Square Park today. We find mosaic tiled street lights, Cooper Union buildings, churches, a ting door, and statues along our walk. We walk down 2nd Avenue, St Marks Place, Bowery, and Bleecker St.
It’s icy cold today, about -2C for much of the day.
Our walk has been circling us to LaGuardia St and our favourite place in NYC, Bosie. We arrive at around 2.45. Jessica our delightful host greets us with a hug and happy birthday wishes for me. She seats us in our favourite spot and we settle in for a relaxing afternoon. The place is buzzing with a large group, 16, near us. Every other table is full. Jessica chats to us, it’s a really busy Saturday. Great for business.
Shortly after we’ve ordered a small birthday cake arrives. We’ve been coming to Bosie since 2013. We fell in love with the quaint little tea parlour on our first visit and just keep coming back. We sit for a couple of hours and enjoy the quiet once the large group leaves. Bing Crosby’s White Christmas plays as soft carols follow this all time favourite. We sit enjoying the quiet for a while and enjoy another pot of tea.
I lose myself in my tea, a chocolate hazelnut blend and listen to the quiet chatter, music and hum of the parlour. I spend a mindful minute enjoying, relishing the space, savouring the tea and the moment. My darling wife opposite, a million miles from everywhere in one of the busiest places on earth. It’s moments like these, fleeting in reality, that are the most special. Time slows for me as I take another sip and close my eyes. The whole experience washing over me making an indelible mark that will last. A moment in time for one person unnoticed by anyone else. How a simple cup of tea can be so transformative is remarkable.
I look up and a group of four interestingly dressed folks are on their phones, their screens, scrolling away.
I close my eyes again and think of a Douglas Adams quote:
Arthur blinked at the screens and felt he was missing something important. Suddenly he realized what it was.
“Is there any tea on this spaceship?” he asked.
I laugh to myself, thinking if only everyone replaced some of their screen time with some tea time how nicer a world would it be.
The bottom of my pot comes way too soon. We look at each other and decide against a third pot. We don our coats and with a warm hug and fond farewell say good-bye to Jessica and her team. We promise to return and brace for the cold as we would towards Broadway in search of the MoMA shop.
We wander down West Broadway to Spring St and pop into a couple of stores on the way. I buy Mardi a dress ring for Christmas. We arrive at MoMA and wander the store. It’s always full of new and interesting gift ideas, quirky items and curious technology. We pick up a few gifts and head home on the subway.
Later that night we grab Shake Shack for dinner as we do the final part of our packing.