Thursday I’m piling Wubby in the car, heading to Charlotte to catch a plane to NYC and (hopefully) get from the airport to Grand Central in time to catch a train to someplace in Connecticut where Alecto, bless her pea-pickin’ heart, will pick us up and take us to meet Simon.
This will be my third trip to the big city, on purpose as opposed to those nasty layovers at JFK on the way to Santo Domingo. I know, it doesn’t make any sense to fly to NY to then fly to the Dominican Republic, especially not in January. But hey, it was cheap. Although we did wind up flying all over the eastern seaboard in a blizzard only to wind up back in Greensboro about fourteen hours later, but that’s a different story.
My first trip was in 1983. I was 22, and had never been on a plane before. We flew out of Roanoke, VA, which is an experience, as the airport is surrounded by mountains. True story, when they needed to extend the runway at the Roanoke airport, there was a major road in the way. Solution: put in a tunnel, then bury it and build the runway on top of it. Sometimes I really miss Roanoke. Anyway, it was a business trip for my mom, and a lesson in traveling for me and my aunt (mom’s sis.) While she worked, aunt and I wandered around mid-town, in the rain, for three days. Then the three of us wandered around for 2 more days and came home, in the rain. We couldn’t get to the airport because some tunnel somewhere was flooded. Our flight was delayed 5 hours, because of rain and fog. When we finally boarded, we were ninth in line for take-off and the liquor was flowing freely.
I didn’t see much of the city on that trip. It rained. A lot.
The second trip was three years ago, for a job interview. It was supposed to be up and back in one day. Didn’t happen that way. It was June, the first 90+ degree day of the summer, and there was a power outage. Then the thunderstorms came rolling in. The interview went well, and sometimes I wish I’d gotten that job. Turned out that someone already with the company found out they were interviewing outside and decided he really wanted to move to NC. Oh well. At least I didn’t have to spend the night at the airport. It just so happened that a great friend of mine was in the city on business and was gracious enough to let me crash at her hotel, which was very nice. Something-or-other Murray Hill. We had a lovely time, and I got home mid-afternoon the following day.
So I’m wondering what on earth has possessed me to take my 20-year-old kid to the big scary city. Not really wondering… I know why. Art. He needs art. MoMA, Met, Whitney, whatever we can find. We’re meeting up with an artist, cousin of my dad’s, who has a studio somewhere on the west side, around 72nd I think. I’m a little nervous about meeting him, afraid I’ll blubber and cry like an idiot. He looks like my dad. I suppose I’ll have to apologize in advance.
I think I’m ready for it to be Thursday. Except for some tiny details, like packing. I suppose I should have my head examined, but hey, I already know I’m crazy so that would be a waste of time. I have a new toy to play with on the trip, a netbook. Could come in handy if we get stuck in an airport during a thunderstorm or other rain-related event.
I promise not to touch the paintings.
What I really can’t figure out is why Alecto is being so nice to the Wub and me. But then, we might be sleeping with the dog!