It was short. It was quick. It was fun.

Ok, I will tell you more.

We flew Porter from the Toronto Island Airport. Landed in the Newark International Airport. Took a taxi into town.

We have a letter from Dr. Kennedy that stipulates that I am infirm and require a wheelchair to get around. I also have a pair of scissors in my medical bag which is needed. The folks at the Island airport let me through with the scissors. No fuss. We passed on the wheelchair. It is a small airport. Janet’s amazing assistant, the famous and fabulous Marina booked the trip. She made sure that my infirm state was noted in bold letters in the Porter file. No confusion there. The Porter staff were very attentive, both on the ground and in the flight. We were fast tracked through every possible gate. Preboarded when the call went out. What fun.

Newark is another story altogether. Huge place. There was a wheelchair waiting for us. That was one of the weirdest experiences of my life. Quite demoralizing. On one hand you appreciate the fast tracking through customs and all the lines. On the other hand you feel very inadequate. The wheelchair was a bonus. It saved me a lot of walking. I will not hesitate in the future in taking advantage of it. It is still weird.

The cab ride into NY was interesting to say the least. The ride itself was uneventful. The view out of the taxi window was amazing. So much heavy industry. So much dirt and filth and pollution in New Jersey. It made New York look like the most wonderful place on earth. Quite a feat that.

We checked into the hotel. As usual, the room was not ready. We went for a walk and to get a bite to eat. So many places to eat. So many choices. Makes it difficult to decide. We finally settle on a place with open widows and doors. The weather is spectacular. Table for two. Order our food. Talk, Watch the people walking outside, longing for a table by the window. We let our waiter know that we covet one of the two tables. The people appear to be finishing, and we will move there as soon as possible.

There is a lady sitting by herself two tables over. Way too much foundation and rouge. I thought that look was out of fashion eons ago. Yet here she is, looking pasty white. Almost clownish. She is high strung. Nervous and fidgety. She finishes brushing her teeth and applies her red lipstick. Stops long enough to let the waiter know that the french fries that came with her meal were inedible. can she get a discount? The waiter comes back. She gets a $2.00 discount, and here is the bill. She fidgets and fusses. Gets her money out. Looks at the bill. Appears to do some calculations. Closes the billfold, puts her money away, collects her belongings and leaves. At no time did she smile.

I remember thinking what a business this is. You have to trust your patrons to put money in the billfold before leaving. Something made me wonder if she left any money since she appeared to put away all the money she had pulled out. She had left $2.00 in the billfold. The waiter ran out to chase her down. She had disappeared.

Welcome to New York.

We came to New York without an agenda. A few friends wanted to have lunch or dinner with us. That was about the only agenda that was set up beforehand. The whole idea was to wander and experience the city. Go back to the hotel when I got tired. Janet could go shopping and do whatever. Thursday was out day. We had dinner by ourselves. Spent the afternoon wandering getting to know the streets. We stayed at a hotel called 60 Thompson Street. Part of a chain of Thompson Hotels. This one happened to be located at its namesake. So much imagination at play here.

The hotel was nice enough. Queen size bed in a room not much bigger. A lovely HD TV, except all the channels were analog with a third of them unwatchable. The remote barely worked. You had to lift up your arm, point in the right direction and hold whatever button down. Spin three time, pray to the God of remotes, burn an effigy. They replaced the batteries in the remote to no avail.

My cell phone is on a Canada only plan. The hotel wanted to charge us $10 for 24 hours of WiFi service. What a ridiculous thing to do. I have a letter going out to someone at the Thompson Group complaining about that. You tend to spend very little time in your hotel. Making this one of the more expensive perks. They should make it $10 for 24 hours of service, as in a cumulative amount, as opposed to a 24 hour day. Janet’s Blackberry was spotty until she went to an At&T store where they jiggled and wiggled until the unit started working. What a to-do.

Went to bed early in anticipation of the next day.

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