Friday, 25 January 2013

State Library, the Frick and Clive

Today (24th) was a rather chilly day. We headed into town and walked to the State Library which was open (yay). We walked through Bryant Park, where the water fountain was still on! All the fountains in Central Park have been shut down for the winter, so I was beyond thrilled to see this one still going, with awesome ice happenings.

Then it was on to the Library.

I got way too excited about some cute little birds.

The inside of the library was utterly beautiful. I couldn't take photos of the reading room, but the rest of the building was also fabulous.

After the Library, we went to the Frick Collection. It's a museum set up in Henry Clay Frick's mansion, to showcase his extensive art collection. The house is undeniably fantastic, but I found the layout of the works uninspiring and lacking any meaning. They left the art in the places he originally put them, but as a viewer, it was hard to understand the collection of works as they're gathered in any real order so it's often hard to appreciate them. So I wasn't a huge Frick fan, but I enjoyed the outside architecture of the building. You were not allowed to take any photos inside the building, and I forgot to take a photo of the outsides (derp).

After the museum, it was outrageously cold, and we headed back to time square. I parted with the family, who headed back home, and met up with my friend Sam who is in New York for a Juilliard audition because he's amazing like that.

We saw the play 'Clive' by Jonathan Marc Sherman, directed by Ethan Hawke at Theatre Row. It's an adaptation of Brecht's 'Baal' and was compelling and confusing and wonderful all together. We described it as a 'thinker' play, because I'm going to have to spend the next week getting my head around it! But it was awesome to see Vincent D'Onofrio on stage, and Ethan Hawke was very very good as Clive. Wonderful night!

Cool Days in Massachusetts and Driving Home

This morning (23rd) I woke up to the beautiful frosty view of the Smith College Campus in Massachusetts. Emma and I had breakfast in the Dorm Dining Room and I pretty much felt like I was in Harry Potter. The grounds are amazing. So beautiful and SNOW COVERED! I had a bit of a tour of the grounds, but it was so cold, so we didn't go everywhere.

The quad where Em's building is.

Emma's building.


The frozen pond!

Standing on the frozen pond!

Saying goodbye was so so hard because I miss her dearly back in Aus, but it's not so bad, because I'm back here in only four months so I'll get to see her again in the blink of an eye!

We drove back to our big city and collapsed home.

Road Trip Y'all

Today (23rd) we drove Emma back to college. We hired a car, and were off on the wrong side of the road!

The American landscape is pretty different to ours I thought.

Passed Newtown, Connecticut.

We stopped in Hartford, the capital of Connecticut for lunch and it was a ghost town, but we found a tavern for lunch where the chef played pool in the games room when he wasn't cooking our food.

And uh, SNOW. The further north we got, the colder it got. It got really really cold let me tell you.

And then suddenly there were signs for Smith and we were in Massachusetts.

Northampton is an utterly gorgeous town. Every single house is amazing looking.

And then we found Emma's place!

She gave us the grand tour of her dorm house, and introduced us to all her friends as 'my four Australians'. The family headed back out into the cold to find a motel to stay in while I hung out with all of Em's dorm mates and helped them build a bookshelf out of cardboard boxes (yep, it was cool). Then we met back up with the family for dinner in town and had a gigantic pizza.

Emma and I were dropped back at the house, and we sat and talked with her friends for literally hours. They are all super cool and it just made me want to go to her college! College seems like one big sleepover! Then I crashed on her dorm room floor and we slept in the freezing cold Massachusetts night (not that her dorm was cold, nice and toasty in fact!) I am going to miss her ah!

Momofuku Milk Bar

We loved this place. It was so fun. As soon as we walked in, Emma asked them why it was called a 'milk bar' and they explained that they took the atmosphere of a bar, and replaced the alcohol with milk. We told them that in Australia there were places actually called milk bars, that sold milkshakes and things and they had no idea!

The whole place was very cool. They didn't have a huge range, but everything they had looked super yum. They have this thing called cereal milk, which is like crushed cereals mixed with milk, and they also make it as an ice-cream, which they gave us a sample of because they're super sweet.

We had cookies and milk.

Emma had a compost cookie, which is made of a mix of all these yummy things like cornflakes and pretzels and chocolate and butterscotch.

Amelia had a cornflake chocolate chip marshmallow cookie which was divine.

And lastly, I had a blueberry and cream cookie and holey moley it was good. My perfect cookie right there. I am tempted to get their cook book JUST for this recipe. 

Milk and Cookies

One of the two bakeries we visited today was Milk and Cookies. It was in the cutest little shop, in a street off the main drag, tucked between the houses. 

Inside was a toasty warm haven of baked goods.

We ordered cookies! I had a Peanut Butter cookie, Emma had dark chocolate chip, and Amelia was the winner with her mint chocolate cookie. My cookie could have been a bit softer, but Amelia's was to die for.

Library, Stamps and Bakery Adventures

Today (22nd) was Emma's last day in New York (ahh!) We spent the morning watching the inauguration (happiness) and eating yummy food, before heading out into the COLD for an adventure, parent free.

Em really wanted to go see the Lions at the front of the State Library, but unfortunately, because today was MLK Day, it was a public holiday and the library was closed! But we went anyway just to see the architecture of the building.

After enjoying the view of the library, we set out on a bakery tour, with a stamp shop side stop. We boarded the subway and I managed to NOT get us all lost, which I am rather proud of. The first bakery was Milk and Cookies, which we loved. We had, cookies.

Next, was the stamp shop. It was mind-blowingly amazing. Literally, walls of stamps.

Then we found this building...and freaked out. Future home.

We also went into the Strand Book Store, which is a huge famous book shop.

We hit up bakery number 2, which was Momofuku Milk Bar. We had yet more cookies, and filled ourselves up, so we headed back into the city, where we met up with the parents and went to see Lincoln at the cinemas, in honour of Obama's inauguration.