48 Hours in New York City.

Geez, long time, no blog. After New York, I was only home for two days before dashing off to Arkansas to visit my little brother before he leaves on his second tour of Afghanistan this week. He deploys early Thursday morning; while I have no doubt we will be seeing his face in September, I’d appreciate it if you would keep him in your thoughts, blogworld!

I have been working on this post for a whole seven days – and it’s my 50th post! – so I think it’s time to hit publish and not look back!

48 Hours in the Big Apple

Thanks to lots of advanced research (shoutout to Google Maps and Trip Advisor), I was able to cover a lot of ground in a relatively short time in New York.

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Our flight arrived Sunday at 11 a.m. After a heart-stopping taxi ride to our hotel, we dropped our bags and headed right back out to explore.  We feasted on some roasted turkey-kale-mozzarella yumminess at the Midtown location of Tom Collichio’s sandwich joint ‘wichcraft before walking to Rockefeller Plaza to buy our tickets for Top of the Rock. The view from the top of 30 Rock was incredible – and that’s from someone who is terrified of heights. I was really glad we took this tour tour rather than the Empire State Building tour because you actually get to see the ESB in all its Art Deco-riffic glory from the Top of the Rock. I was most excited about this.

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After taking in a 360 degree view of Manhattan and riding the elevator back down (not nearly as exciting as the Disneyesque ride up), we braved a large crowd in a small space at Magnolia Bakery to grab a mid-afternoon snack; I had a delicious Oscar cupcake – red carpet red velvet with little gold sparkles on top. We polished off our cupcakes while sitting on a bench across from Radio City Music Hall.

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After our delicious cupcakes, we stopped in the MOMA store – I had to leave or I would have spent a fortune – and then took a little stroll through Central Park. Even in the cold and gray of February, it was beautiful.

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From Central Park, we walked up Fifth Avenue, checking out the Tiffany and Co. flagship store and admiring the Bergdorf Goodman window displays. By this point, the sun was starting to set, so we stopped in Grand Central Station to take some photos and have a drink at the Campbell Apartment. Serena van der Woodsen was unfortunately nowhere to be seen, but I did have a delicious (and potent) glass of Prohibition Punch that gave me just the right amount of courage I needed to brave Times Square before turning in for the night.

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The all-day workshop we were in town for was in the Financial District, so after a quick breakfast at the hotel on Monday morning, we took a cab down to the 9/11 Memorial. We didn’t reserve visitor passes because the Memorial didn’t open until 10 a.m. and our workshop started at 9:00, but we were able to see the site of Ground Zero and the impressive Freedom Tower.

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After the workshop ended around 4:30, we grabbed a pretzel from a nearby street cart and walked up and down the Brooklyn Bridge just in time to see the sun set over the city. We popped in Century 21 to grab some souveniers (namely, the quintessential “I heart NY” coffee mug) before walking up to Little Italy for pizza at Lombardi’s.  This was the only NY pizza we ate so I’m not sure how it compares to any of the many other pizzerias, but let’s just say the yum factor was high. Throw in a Sixpoint Sweet Action beer and I was good to go.

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The sun was shining on Tuesday morning, so I woke up early to go for a 4-mile run down 5th Avenue and through Central Park. I was (and still am) dealing with some knee and hip issues, but c’mon. I couldn’t say no! When would I have this opportunity again? Plus, I made a special NYC playlist (coming soon!) that I just couldn’t let go unlistened.

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After a quick shower and breakfast at the hotel, we went to the New York Public Library to check out the beautiful Rose Main Reading Room before catching a taxi back to LaGuardia.

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Just like that, 50-some hours after we first left, we were back in Atlanta at 3:30!

I had such an amazing in the short time we were there; it’s cliche, but I really had to keep pinching myself. I’m pretty sure I even dealt with some PNYD (post New York depression). I can’t wait to go back for a longer length of time and discover little spots away from the touristy madness and hopefully bring my husband. He has never been, and last week I legitimately thought he was going to strangle me if I started one more story with, “This one time in New York…”

Tell me: what off-the-grid things do you like to do in New York? What food do I need to eat next time? Is it even possible to uncover every amazing nook and cranny without just packing up and moving there?

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