6th Feb – New York

Didn’t sleep well. Lazy start – out about 10:00am. Walked North on 6th Ave to Central Park. Took a horse & carriage ride around the South end of the park in bright sunshine on the snow, which lasted about 20 mins. Saw the ice rink made famous by the film Love Story and the top of the apartment block where John Lennon lived & died. After the ride finished Lynne told me very quietly that doing that ride was one of her life ambitions fulfilled.

Walked South down 5th Ave – very posh shop land! Lynne went into a very posh cosmetic shop called Saphora and bought some excellent cosmetics at less than half UK equivalents.

Caught a bus for 10 blocks South down 5th Ave to the Empire State Building using the $4 Fun Pass that gives 24hr unlimited riding on buses & subway (didn’t go on it). Went up the Empire State Building, only to 86th floor – the 102nd floor observatory is not open week-ends!! It cost $7 and the queue wasn’t bad. Takes 2 elevator rides. First to the 80th floor, then from there to the 86th floor. There is a third lift to the 102nd floor, which tops the top cylindrical bit. Still, it was a bright sunny winter day with visibility reported as 25 miles. Great views on camcorder.

Walked part way back towards the hotel on 6th Ave looking for a bar where we could have a beer and look at the guides for something to eat, the target being Broadway Joe’s Steak restaurant. Spotted a restaurant & bar in a cross-street called Cafe Un Deux Trois and went in for a beer. Got introduced to Rolling Rock beer, excellent. Decided to stay for a meal. I had a nice Pate de Campagne & Lynne had Gravlax – something I had not heard of before. Its thinly sliced salmon that is marinated & not cooked! Lynne then had Steak Tartare, which came with fries. I had Steak Frites, which was a thick lump of sirloin steak with a huge pile of fries. ($24 – very spoilt!) The quality of the meat was so good I really enjoyed it cooked medium rare. We shared a salad with Roquefort cheese sauce. By this time, after a couple of hours of steady eating, its go for bust! So its desert time. They did a gluten free Creme Broule, and I had a wonderful Chocolate Gateaux that tasted of chocolate, not suqar – not at all sickly! Finished off with Fonseca Bin 27 – one I had not heard of (Bin 69 for me), but beautiful nevertheless. It was Lynne’s first vintage port, and she loved it!

Caught a cab back to the hotel for a nightcap. Early night.