New York City – Hate the City… Love the Shows!

I hate New York. I hate the tall buildings, the stench, the trash heaps every fifty yards. I hate the smell, the taste, the lacking ethics, the livelihood of New York. It is squalor, putrid, materialistic, greedy and corrupt. There is no redeeming value to New York, except… the theater and the museums!!!

Oh my gosh!

I saw two fabulously perfect Broadway shows; The King and I, with Kelli O’Hara and Ken Watanabe and An American in Paris, with Robert Fairchild!   Oh my, I laughed and I cried – they were so staggeringly stunning!  I toured the Frick Museum and the Met and visited Soho, Little Italy, Fifth Avenue, Central Park, and more in just over four days! It rained, it poured, the sun shone brilliantly and the clouds hovered and threatened. It was four and ½ days and I am exhausted! Not just for all the walking, the taxi’s that were oblivious during torrential downpours, the street vendors, the garbage, the arrogance, the attitude, the pushing and shoving, the muggings and more…but for the unrelenting ‘buzz’ that everyone is required to sustain.

I am home now and definitely quite happy at the familiar landscape. But there were certainly great things that were housed in a city where scaffolding and garbage 20 feet high greet you every single block every day all day!

I would have to comment on the Frick Museum and the Metropolitan. The Frick for the decadence of its existence. It was built by Henry Clay Frick for his most beloved and beautiful wife. Every piece of limestone, every lay of wood, of ornament and chandelier were breathtaking. It encompassed an entire New York City block and housed what could only be described as the most amazing collection of artwork, sculpture, porcelain, antiquity and antiques in the US. Then there was the Met! Spanning 4 city blocks, the museum could easily take a week to experience, but we had just a few hours and so chose to dally at the John Singer Sargant, Portrait of Artists and Friends, exhibit. Studying each, and the inscription identifying it, I became so drawn into the man, I could not escape. He was at once amazing. dashing, intriguing, artistic, debonair, attractive, magnifying, magnificent, perfection in art, and I wished I could have known the real man. He drew me in and I was spelled!

I stayed in my friend’s condo on the 29th floor of a building in upper Manhattan. A good to better neighborhood, she paid a hefty pence for the right to live in this 1043 square foot abode. It was a bonus that the elevator took a sort of hyper-speed to reach the ground floor where a doorman would greet you with a smile. But despite her spending $50k to have new noise proof windows installed, the noise must have bounced, because it was not dissipated – at all and was a constant symphony rehearsal played by five year old students… At night, I slept fitfully by blasting the air conditioner to whiten the cacophony.

In New York you cannot have a – garbage disposal, ceiling lights that are recessed and cordless, washer-dryers without special permission, ventilation in bathrooms or kitchens, or any delivery without a proper delivery receipt. Rules abound! At present, New York charges a premium tax on residential purchases over $1million, which in New York City would apply to everyone given the cost of a condo. But then everything costs a premium, to such an extent that my friend found if she flew to her home city of Larkspur across the Golden Gate Bride from San Francisco with her monthly dry cleaning and monthly confixation of her hair, she would save money rather than having these things done in New York. So she does, and it gives her a break from the perilous living.

And while life isn’t perfect back home, while skeletons still stalk my days, at least I have the open skies, the mountains in view, brilliantly green trees and grass, the bantering of squirrels and the sweet trills of birds. I have my grown children, my elderly dog and my abode of friends who love me.

Life isn’t perfect, but then, at least, “I try…etc., etc., etc”.

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