. . . on a New York story
Last January when my sister announced she was doing the Dublin Marathon and told me that I was also doing the marathon she threw me a carrot. The carrot was the gift of a flight to New York. As carrots go it was, as they say in Manhattan, a doozy.
“Do the marathon and we’ll go to New York,” she said with the air of someone who has her argument already won. So while I was the narkiest person in Ireland for around 19 miles of the event – “don’t talk to me, look at me, touch me or encourage me in any way” was the order directed every five minutes to my long-suffering support team – I was always going to cross that finish line.
New York is something I used to do before children, something I thought I wouldn’t be in a position to do for a very long time post-children. If it wasn’t for my generous sister I’d still be dreaming of the day I would once again eat a Magnolia cupcake while strolling around Greenwich Village idly wondering which Brownstone Gwyneth and Chris inhabited.
This very morning, all being well, I am in New York city feeling very pleased with myself. Naturally, I packed a large dose of parental guilt along with my warmest jumpers. But if all has gone to plan I’ve managed to leave it in the lost luggage at JFK. I’ll pick it up again on the way back, don’t you worry.
So projected status update: very pleased with self. Possibly have just eaten a hot dog from a street cart for breakfast. Very likely sitting in Strawberry Fields trying to commune with John Lennon. And also this morning I have arranged to meet someone to give her a wedding present. It’s only four years late. I know, I know. There is serious etiquette around this sort of thing but hang on a New York minute. I have my reasons.
I was only delighted to be invited to B’s wedding. It was a beautiful occasion – the gorgeous country church, the antique lace of her gown and the drinks on the sun-drenched lawn. It was only when my boyfriend and I walked inside the marquee that things took a turn. We couldn’t see our names on the table plan. We looked again. B lives in New York so the tables were all references to the city, Manhattan and Queens and New Jersey and so on. We weren’t anywhere in the big city table plan though. Anxious not to make a fuss and knowing from watching a lot of wedding reality TV that table plan mistakes happen all the time, I picked a table (Brooklyn, I am nearly sure) and asked the staff to bring two new settings and chairs.