Instead of cabbing it—an expensive proposition—I made my way from Newark, NJ (EWR) to Manhattan via a series of trains, managing the transfers with Derek, one of the lads on this jazzy, NY weekend. The Air Train to the RAIL Path to Pen Station where we jumped on the E line to West 4th station. Shortly thereafter, as we were checking in at the Larchmont, Brian and his brother Mike arrived. They’d been in town since earlier in the day and were coming back from having a few drinks.
I dumped my bags in my room (which is even bigger than last year!), grabbed the camera and took off for a 2-hour walk, stopping for a burrito in the Village. Feeling a bit parched, I found a grocery store where I picked up some water, bananas and apples; I figured as my diet over the next few would tend to lean on the rich side, I should at least attempt to be good with snacks.
Back at the hotel, I did plan to write a blog post but uploaded a photo instead, then closed the lid of my laptop and took a nap. By 5:30, three of our group were off on what turned out to be a 40-minute trek to our first destination of the evening, Spritzer, for drinks. New York is a similar to Paris in that it’s a great walking city and, despite hopping on and off trains, you end up clocking some miles on foot.
Eventually, we made our way to dinner at Ken and Cook, off the Bowery, managing to while away a couple of hours before setting off again. Brian suggested stopping by the location of the famed CBGB’s, which I’d never been to; sadly, the venue has closed and the location is now a men’s clothing store. We then hailed a cab and raced midtown—quite literally—for our final destination of the day: Birdland. This jazz club, established in 1949, was named for Charlie “Yardbird” Parker, one of my favourite saxophonists. We arrived just after 11:00 with a few minutes to spare before the band, featuring Steve Kuhn, Steve Smith, Eric Alexander, Jaleel Shaw and Lonnie Plaxico, struck up a set entitled Coltrane Revisited. It was a pretty special.
We finished the night with a train ride back downtown.
Today’s Photo Triptych: West 4th Street | Shadow Escapes | Whole Grain