New York State of Mind

I’m writing this from my new apartment in El Barrio. It’s nice: One decent-size bedroom, a living area, a full kitchen, and a shoehorned bathroom, parquet floors, natural light. You know, something that would rent for more than I pay for my 4 bedroom, 2 bath house on a quarter acre in the ’burbs because even though I’m in Spanish Harlem, this is MANHATTAN, baby!

It’s worth the outrageous money we’re paying to stay here this week because Frick and Frack have never been to New York. We did the tourist thing in Times Square yesterday and have had enough of that, thank you very much. Today we have tickets to How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, starring Harry Potter himself and Dan Fielding from Night Court. We’ll eat amazing food on Restaurant Row tonight and begin the austerity plan tomorrow (spaghetti cooked “at home” instead of one more restaurant meal with ridiculous taxes added on). We’ll do plenty of walking and gawking and photographing and even squeeze in to watch the big fireworks display tomorrow night.

My kids are already in love with The Big City. I appreciate it again–the variety of people, the arts on your doorstep, the vitality of neighborhoods and round-the-clock activity. But after nearly a month of travel, mimi has to admit that flying home to her swamp and staying for a while is sounding mighty tempting. Her Empire State of Mind has an expiration date.

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