Monticello III

Monticello III
The horse pulled Monticello III in Coshocton Ohio, part of Roscoe Village.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace National Historic Site- New York City

Completing out a Very Presidential trip through New York City was a visit to the Theodore Roosevelt Birthplace.

We wanted to go here on our last trip, but this site was going through some upgrades, and was closed at that time.

So, we stopped by here one morning and had a great time.  We thought we might be here a half an hour to an hour, but we ended up staying for over 2 hours.

There is a small but very attractive museum in the front area.  An absolutely Holy Grail level display case houses the shirt, notes, and glasses case penetrated by the bullet of John Shrank during an assassination attempt on former President Roosevelt.

The unsuccessful assassination attempt happened in 1912 in Milwaukee.  See my photos from that site here.  The bullet was slowed by Roosevelt's glasses case, notes, and shirt, but it did go into Teddy's body.  It would be with him for the rest of his life.  And, as a side note to Teddy's toughness, he refused to go to the hospital at that time...  and he went on to deliver a 90 minute speech as scheduled.

Anyway, it was a true thrill getting to see these amazing relics.

We watched a very well done movie on Teddy's childhood at the home, and then we took a great tour of the home. 

The Birthplace is actually a reproduction but it is on the same site as the original home.   Our tour went through several rooms, and we had a guide that knew her history, and was a very funny lady.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Samuel J.Tilden House in Gramercy Park in New York City

Here are just a few photos I took of the Samuel J. Tilden House in New York.

It is literally a very short walk away from the Theodore Roosevelt Birth Site.

Tilden is one of those political trivia notes that seems odd.  In 1876, he won the popular vote for president, but still lost the electoral college to Hayes.

Anyway, he lived in this very attractive house that is now occupied by the National Arts Club.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Bravo Pizza in New York

I did want to put up a couple of quick photos of Bravo Pizza in New York.  We stopped by this pizza place which was small and loved it.  These little skinny restaurants in New York have a lot of character.  AND, I remember stopping at a similar place in the same area on my first trip to NYC over 2 decades earlier.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Astro Gallery of Gems- New York City

We walked by the Astro Gallery of Gems one evening and I took a few photos from the outside.

We did come back on another day to check out the inside and this place blew us away.  It was almost as much of a museum as a shop.

They had all sorts of odd rocks, skeletal pieces and coral.  They had a lot to look at, but more impressively, they had some really amazing pieces.  Not only did they have some cool, rare items, they had those items in amazing condition.

I am not sure how they got their hands on all of their extremely rare and perfect inventory, but they have it.  I enjoyed looking at the coral, and at some meteorite pieces.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Trump Tower in New York City

I am sure you remember our trip to Trump Tower last time around.  We ended up having a very nice time, and having a nice, affordable meal.  Its a good stop while in New York.
I think a lot of people go by, and don't realize that you can walk right in.  There are businesses inside, and its a pretty open building.
There is security at the front, but they seem to only check packages.  If you aren't carrying anything, they wave you on in.  There is plenty of security inside, but they are pretty hands off as far as I could see.
Last time, we ate at the Trump Grille, but this time, we went a bit more casual and ate at the Trump CafĂ©.  I ended up having beef stroganoff, carrots, and Brussels sprouts.  My meal, with a drink was around $16.  Again, for this area, a nice meal like that is a bargain.
I absolutely insist on avoiding political talk here, but I do cover history, and Presidents here a lot.  I think this is a rare opportunity to walk into a building where an active President spends a lot of time.  Who knows what the next decade or two will bring, but this is a major site related to a president.... and I think visiting it right now has some bragging rights attached to it.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Forbidden Planet and the Strand in New York City

So, one evening we went over to Forbidden Planet Comics Shop and the Strand Book Store in New York.  They are both located literally right next door to each other.

We looked through Forbidden Planet, which is a place I would have loved at one time.  I still though it was pretty cool, but teenage me would have absolutely freaked out over this place.

It is a huge comic shop, with all of the collectible toys and that sort of thing.  At the front counter, they did have a nice selection of signed recent comics.  I was very impressed with that.  In fact, I am sure I would have picked up some, just to give them a try...  but I had to think about packing issues for the ride home.  I had one carry on bag with me, and I was concerned with trying to stuff more into it.

I went in to the Strand Books with the same mentality.  Plus, I am stocked up on books to read for some time.  Ever so often one pops out to me, but its not often.  I did briefly visit their rare books room on the third floor, but they were setting up for an event.  Plus, there are really no rare books I am looking for at this time.

I DID end up buying some of their small buttons and some postcards!  In fact, I found a few very cool things here, including a very nice 1984 book pin, and a similar one for Fahrenheit 451.

We were really impressed with the atmosphere at the Strand.  The place was vibrant with staff and shoppers.  There must have been 10 registers open to check people out.  it was nice seeing a book store obviously doing a lot of good business.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Chelsea Market in New York City

We swung through the Chelsea Market briefly while in New York.  It was jam packed with people!

There are mostly food places, and, like in many areas of New York, seating to enjoy your food purchase, was scarce.  We did grab some great coffee here though.

We went in and fought the crowds.  It is a cool place to visit at some point.  Here are a few photos!

Friday, January 5, 2018

Statues in New York City

Here are a few photos I randomly took of various statues as we walked around New York.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Time Square- New York, New York

Here are a very few photos I took of the Time Square area.  We spent time here last time too.  If you are in New York, you almost don't even need to put it on your "to see" list.  You are going to end up there at some point.

We walked through here one day, and noticed a chain Italian place as we were looking for a place to eat.  We joked about people visiting Time Square just to eat at this chain restaurant.

Well, after making jokes about tourists going to the chain places when they visit New York, we found a cozy little pizza place that looked local.  We ordered, and had some great pizza.  At the end of our meal, we realized that we had just enjoyed...  a chain pizza shop.

The costumed characters are still all over the place.  Also, you learn quickly to simply not talk to the various salesmen on the street.

Even with all of the chaos, this is a cool place to go to.  Like the rest of New York, security and police are abundant, and the place just feels safe now.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Waitress on Broadway in NYC

On our last trip to NYC, we toyed with going to see a Broadway play, but it simply never happened.  We got too busy with other things.  This time, we knew we had to see one.  Its definitely one of those things that should be on all bucket lists.

I really wanted to see "Waitress" because Sara Bareilles wrote the music for it.

So, we checked around and didn't like any of the deals that were available.  We ended up going right to the theater and got a great deal on "obstructed view" seats in the third row!  The lady selling the tickets was very helpful and kind, and we were so appreciative on getting what we considered a hookup for the show.

Later, we stood in line waiting to get in to the theater half an hour before the show.  We would realize later that half the cast (including Jason Mraz) walked past us to get in the theater's side door.

The pre show vibe was exciting, and I did notice some excitement around a former American Idol contestant in the audience.  I think that's pretty common for Broadway though.

The obstructions for our discounted tickets were barely noticeable, and we were very happy with our discounted seats as I am sure people beside us probably paid a lot more for their seats.

The musical itself was great.  Easily a highlight of our trip and probably the best theater experience I have ever had.  The acting and the music were both flawless, and it is crazy how much goes into making something like this happen.

Jason Mraz was fun to watch...  and his comedic timing was perfect.  For a guy known for his singing, his acting was flawless.  In fact, he pulls off a pretty big accomplishment, in making his character (a doctor having an affair with his patient) likable.

Also, my friend and I are both HUGE fans of Northern Exposure, and we were thrilled to see John Cullum step on stage as Joe.  Forget the pop stars in the theater this night.  John Cullum is true stage royalty.  We're not worthy.

The Bareilles pinned songs sounded the way you would expect.  Excellent.  There was a live band on stage that blended in with the actors at times (the waitresses would talk to them and take them coffee, as though they were customers).

The story was sweet and sad.  You can look up the story, so I won't get too deep into it, but there is a lot of getting on with life after making bad decisions, dealing with bad and inappropriate relationships, etc.  It is very haunting in a way as Jenna's, the main character, mom is conjured with pie ingredients.

There is a line in the musical, where Jenna is writing a letter to her future baby, and she talks about finding someone in life that loves you enough to hold you for 20 minutes.  If that line doesn't get you, you are a loveless zombie.

As with any exciting, emotional performance, it ended, though I wanted more.  We left the theater knowing we had experienced something special.

On a side note, when I got back home I watched the movie on DVD, and I enjoyed it very much too.  The musical is very faithful to the movie.  AND, I have read up on the film's writer, director and co-star, Adrienne Shelly, who was murdered shortly after the film was made.  Her story is an interesting one and I hope you take the time to look her and the foundation started after her passing up.