Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Parking Ballet

In an "only in New York" moment, I was lucky enough to finally capture an intricate dance that takes place each weekday morning on 120th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam.

Drivers remain in their cars and pull out in staggered formation just enough to let the street sweeper pass next to the curb. Then they put it in reverse and return to their parking spaces, get out and walk to work.

Everywhere else in the world such parking habits would provide a daily ration of ticket income for police, but here in what is supposed to be the hardest-assed city in the country people find a way to make it work. Who says New Yorkers are rude and nasty?

Well, some of them are...

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

More sonorous than the cactus

... was last night's performance of "33 Variations," starring Jane Fonda. The play itself was a bit trifling, but nonetheless very enjoyable--especially because it concerns Beethoven, one of Mary's favorites. And it was exciting to see such a big star up-close (from the second row, no less!).

She was nominated for a Tony award yesterday morning, so she was probably in a particularly good mood to step onstage for us.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Cactus Concerto

So, how exactly does someone "play" a cactus?

Very carefully, of course.

Certainly with less abandon than one plays chad. We heard both vegetation (vox vegi?) during a percussion performance in a Chelsea studio (where else?) the other night with Mary's friend and colleague Pierre and his mother, Claudine. Well, at least we had a good meal afterward. While I admire the performers and their earnest efforts, atonal sounds just aren't my thing. I guess my musical tastes are not that experimental. My brain keeps searching for a melody, and it just frustrates the rest of my body.

So, just chalk it up to one of those interesting experiences one finds pretty much only in NYC. At least it was spent with good friends.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Last Sunday

Last Sunday, Jeff and Mary went on a hike with our friend (and Mary's colleague) Pierre and his mom, Claudine, who is visiting from France (she lives near Paris). It was warm but not "overbearing" at Bear Mountain, which is about a 1-hour train ride from the Bronx. It was nice to get outside--Mary has been a bit of a couch potato lately. A big "merci" to Pierre for helping Mary up the mountain. His expert climbing skills came in handy.

This weekend won't be quite so scenic. First of all, the weather is supposed to be rainy (yuck). Second, we are starting to move Rachel out of her dorm, so we'll be packing boxes and loading them into a rental car most of Saturday afternoon.

Saturday evening, however, we are spending once again with Pierre and Claudine, seeing a little concert at an art gallery. That's something we've never done before!

Next week will be a whir of activity. Tuesday night we are seeing Jane Fonda in a Broadway play called "33 Variations." Our run of luck with plays has been very good lately, so we hope it continues with this one. And how often do you get to see Jane Fonda in person, anyway?

After that, we will finish moving Rachel out of the dorm and take off for California for 10 days. Busy times ahead!