Memorial Day Weekend

New York, Travel

Wow so a month has been past since I last wrote on here. Eeek i’m sorry. Haven’t really felt the ‘inspiration’ to update with what I’ve been up to. But here is a quick recap of the long weekend we just had here in America.

May 26th was Memorial Day which is a day for remembering Men and Women who have died while serving in the armed forces. It is also considered the unofficial start of summer. So as the majority of New Yorkers headed to their house in The Hampton’s, Will and I stayed in the city. During summer my work has ‘summer fridays’ where the office closes at 3pm. The first of these was on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend to give us an extra long weekend. I spent my few extra hours roaming East Village and Lower East Side and catching up on personal projects at Cafe Pick Me Up on Avenue A. This is one of my favourite cafes in the city, such an awesome location just across the road from Tompkins Square Park. On my way home I got caught in the rain – again. I really need to learn to have my umbrella on me at all times this time of year! But luckily got home before the major thunder and lightening storm set in!

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The forecast for the weekend was a bit iffy and was threatening rain each day. We decided to make the most of the little bits of sunshine New York was tempting us with on Saturday and take our bikes out for a ride. First stop – basketball shots in Brooklyn. All the Basketball courts you see around New York in the movies aren’t an exaggeration. They are everywhere and easily accessible. The one we were at was filled with kids who stole our ball and Will had to beg for it back.

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Pushing our limits with the rain even further we rode to Brooklyn Bridge Park. It was a bit more crowded than expected with 4 wedding parties getting photos in front of the bridge. The photos would look great – yes. But being around all those strangers and foot traffic on your wedding day just sounds like unnecessary stress to me! Unfortunately on the way home our luck was out. We got caught in torrential rain and it was not slowing down anytime soon. I was drenched by the time we got home. Sickness soon set in, putting a damper on the rest of the weekend and me missing 2 days of work.

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Sunday the weather completely cleared up and it was a beautifully sticky 25 degrees. We ventured up to Queens to check out Sculpture Park. It’s like an outdoor art exhibit where they make obscure sculptures and put them on display in a park overlooking the water.

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After stocking up on Cold and Flu tablets we headed to a rooftop party just around the corner from us with a couple of kiwi friends. It was a fun night with an INCREDIBLE view. We have a small rooftop at our apartment but it is nothing like this. I’ve got a feeling summer is going to be filled with nights like these.

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We’ve been here almost 7 months now (wow that’s flown by), so that means 7 months being away from the beach and spectacular sea views. I needed a dose of the sand, the sea and the sun so off to Rockaway we went. Rockaway beach is an hour and a half subway trip from New York City. Not as accessible as the beaches back home but not bad when you are living in the depths of a concrete jungle.

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The subway was packed. So many city folk headed out to show off their bikini bods and take a dip in The Atlantic. Which was ice freaking cold btw. Because New Yorkers don’t have the luxury of a back yard or beaches everywhere they really make the most of city parks and any beach you can get to via subway. On a weekend day in summer any park in the city will be covered in people. As the beach isn’t the easiest to get to, people tend to use parks as their place to get a tan. They head down in their swimsuits, find a spot, lather in sunscreen and bake.

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The shore line of Rockaway Beach was something that really interested me. At any beach in New Zealand the shore line will be dotted with million dollar mansions because of the view. At Rockaway, it was project housing. That’s just something you wouldn’t see back home.

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While we were still in New Zealand, Will and I watched a short documentary video by The Selby about a small beachside taco shop called Rockaway Taco. The guy who created this tiny food shop was so interesting and we always said we would go check the place out when we in New York. I am so glad we did. We were in line for probably close to an hour but it was well worth it. See the video i’m talking about below.

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