New York State of Mind (July 17-20, 2012)

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Our next vacation started only a few days after our last one ended and was planned by Kris. All I did was get the stops from him to book lodging.

Map of our New England Route

What time zone are we in now? I'm so messed up. I'm not complaining though. Too much travel is a good problem to have.

We arrived home on Friday morning at 6:30am and I had to be at work for AcDec by 10am. On Saturday, we spent the entire day test driving cars despite my being incredibly nauseous from all of our flights. We narrowed down the list of the ones we drove to the Hyundai Elantra, Chevy Sonic, and Toyota Prius C. I still want to test drive some more though. I think I want to test drive a MINI Cooper. I think they are cute.

Sunday was packing and laundry day, as I had to work again on Monday.  I also had to say a final goodbye to my Mazda.

Saying a final goodbye to my dented 2006 Mazda 3i Touring

Monday night we checked into the Park Inn DFW for the evening - a really nice hotel that offers DFW shuttle service. I'd gotten the Park and Fly package as part of the Club Carlson bonus point promotion. You could stay a night and earn enough points to stay one or more nights in any Club Carlson hotel. Kris and I racked up a lot of points thanks to this promo.

Tuesday morning we were on the flight to Westchester, NY with a layover in Chicago. *It saved us massive amounts of money to take the flight to White Plains (HPN) airport and rent the car there instead of flying to LGA, EWR, or JFK. White Plains is a 45 minute drive from New York City. It was a smaller airport and very much worth the layover to save the money (at least $200 savings for the two week car rental). We get to drop the car off at LGA for no additional money.

Strange to both Kris and I were the set of keys we were given for the rental car.  They gave us two sets, but there was no way to separate the two keys?!?  What good is that?

We stayed the evening in Long Island at a Best Western.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

We started the day with free breakfast at the hotel, but I wound up seeing a Carvel Ice Cream and had to get some. 10 am ice cream. Yum!

Our first stop was to Marconi's Radio Shack housed at an elementary school. This was Guglielmo Marconi's original radio shack from 1902 that was used for ship-to-shore transmission/receiving and training. Can anyone guess who wanted to go here? If I hadn't mentioned it before, Kris planned this trip. I am learning lots.

Kris at Marconi's Radio Shack

The next stop on the list was Wardenclyffe, Tesla's 16 acre laboratory now pretty much ruins. Kris loves Nicola Tesla. Really, we should all love Tesla. He is little credited for the major inventions he came up with that we still use to this day including the AC induction motor, the radio, and the x-ray.

Kris with Tesla Tower in the background.

I got Kris's photo with Tesla Street. Passersby must have thought, "Oh goodie...another Tesla nut."

Next up was a spot for me - a house in the shape of a big duck! Over 20 feet tall, the duck was made as an advertising gimmick and is now a gift shop. When we walked inside the lady said, "Duck on in for a gander." Reminded me of something my faraway friend Marlene would quip.

While I toured the duck, Kris took photos of butterflies.

In a nearby field was a neat windmill.

Lunch was at a famous roadside stop called LUNCH. Many stars have eaten here. Kris got some seafood. I got a hotdog, but it came dry. I asked for mustard, and they brought spicy mustard (which I can't eat). Did you know that squeezing lemon juice on a hotdog isn't awful?

We stopped at some scenic overlooks of Long Beach, Hither Hills, and then headed to Montauk to see the lighthouse.

Montauk Lighthouse
On the drive back we saw Popeye bartering corn before it started to pour on us.

Did I mention that I got to eat Carvel for breakfast? Well, dinner was two slices of pizza. I love New York food!

We checked into our Huntington B&B for the night which was within walking distance of the Paramount Theatre in Huntington where Dream Theater was playing a two night engagement.  The B&B had a good amount of space and a loft bedroom.

The Dream Theater concert was great, but I didn't quite understand the affectionate swearing by a few members of the audience. If you like someone, why would you scream a**hole at their general direction?

Dream Theater via Kris's cell phone camera

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Every time I go to New York, I've tried to go to a museum in Astoria called Museum of the Moving Image. Every time I've gone to New York, it was closed...but not this time.

We got there at opening to run through it before it was time to meet up with my mother.

Kris and I saw all of the exhibits, but we didn't watch any of the many movies/movie clips available. You could easily spend a half day there. We were there less than an hour.

Dummy used to do the spinning head in The Exorcist.

Prosthetic legs used in the movie Black Swan

They have three floors of displays ranging from memorabilia, movie magic, audio effects, and other theater.  We were a bit sad to see they had a Nintendo NES and Sony Playstation on display as relics next to antique Pong.

Are both the Nintendo NES and Sony Playstation really old enough to be relics in a museum?

Hey hey...

Kris stayed and hung out with my mom and Aunt Alice for lunch. We all went to a diner for lunch grub. Kris headed out to go back to Long Island for night two of Dream Theater, and I spent time with my mom and Aunt Alice while visiting with Anna and Nicky.

For dinner, Nicky, Danny, Aunt Alice, Uncle Nick, my mother, and I all went out for some awesome burgers. It was really nice to have the big group together.

I stayed the night with my mother (keeping her up too late talking) and got to meet the love in her life - Kit Kat, her sweet little feline companion.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Mom and I walked over to Aunt Alice's and spent a bit of the morning with her. Kris came and joined us. Uncle Nick had picked us up some massive Sal, Chris, & Charlie's heroes loaded with lots of meat and cheese. Best sandwiches ever!  Kris and I had some for lunch.

Juliette, Nicholas, Nicky, me, Danny, and my mom

Aunt Alice, me, and my mom

We were to pick Terri and Adam up from the airport, but, due to rain, they were delayed. When we were finally able to pick them up, we headed out to the PEZ factory.

Traffic was atrocious, and it took us hours to drive to the PEZ factory. We had less than 10 minutes before it closed, so the lady let us come in for free.

We all darted this way and that looking at different things before leaving. We saw everything we were interested in looking at for free!

Adam and the giant PEZ

 I also got a free sample pack of each flavor of PEZ. We all had one PEZ before remembering that they are gross. I still have the other flavor packs.

While driving to our next location, we passed some odd yard art.

Next up was a trip to Riverview Park in Shelton, Connecticut to look at the white squirrels. We didn't see any squirrels at all except for a ghost squirrel who mysteriously appeared on Adam's shoulder - scary.

This evening was a stay at the Courtyard Hartford Farmington and laundry time for Kris and Kristy, but not before driving through Derby, Connecticut's smallest city.

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