Oh man, it’s been way too long… again. September has been mental. But instead of bothering you with the usual excuses about how busy I’ve been, I thought I’d show you what I’ve been busy with (partly): a trip to New York. As in, a holiday! Just Mr Liburuak and I! For more than a whole week! It was amazing. Despite it being late September/early October, we had the best summer weather you could imagine. We didn’t bike, but there were books and of course there was food. Here’s some proof.
I love the concept of little free libraries. This one’s on Prince St in Nolita and is a product of a project by The Architectural League NY.
Of course we bought books. They came from McNally Jackson, also on Prince St. I loved this bookshop. It’s bright and airy, has a café and I thought their selection of books was really well curated, especially the employees’ recommendations section, from which I picked up both The Awakening and The Girl in the Photograph.
We were really sceptical about going to the Top of the Rock at the Rockefeller Center. We hate tourist traps and this had all the hallmarks of being one. And indeed, they make you watch silly movies (OK, the one about the history of the Rockefeller Center is actually quite interesting) and they want to take your picture. But we were rewarded with this view. No filter, I swear.
And then of course, food. One night, we had booked a sushi and sake tasting class at Sushisamba in the West Village, a restaurant specialising in Latin American (Peruvian and Brazilian)/Japanese fusion. This had been part of my birthday present from Mr Liburuak and we were extremely excited! Can you imagine our disappointment when we got there and the class had been cancelled, but they hadn’t told us? The maitre was super apologetic and promised us a tasting menu complete with different sakes at a reduced price, so we grudgingly accepted. And then he brought out one wonderful dish after the other, explaining why he’d paired each particular sake with that dish. At one point, three of my favourite things in the world – cevice, tiraditos, and Mr Liburuak – were assembled at our table. The ceviche was delicious. We were completely smitten and expected to pay accordingly, even with a discount – only to be told dinner was on the house. Free. Gratis. We can’t thank the maitre, whose name unfortunately escaped me, enough for the special treatment we got!
And when I said there were no bikes, I was lying. There were loads of them. Biking seems to have become a really popular activity in NYC! We saw people of all ages and types: from office workers to hipsters to kids and grandmas, in lycra, in suits, and in everyday clothes. I was really pleasantly surprised – even though it was clear that you have to be tough to claim your slice of traffic as a cyclist in NYC.