Remember before that I told you I am going down to New York City for a day trip? Well, I went and came back. And I have plenty to tell.
I left my house at around 7:00 PM Wednesday evening. That was after I had a meeting with my subrenter and my Village Director. So my subrenting schema was approved, and I already received the first payment from my subrenter. So the apartment problem was solved. After that, I then cooked some pasta for Friday. I know that I won't have enough time to cook for my lunch on Friday when I get back from NYC so I decided I would cook it before I leave and then store it in the refrigerator. So I did that. Then I got a shower, changed into a presentable outfit, and then headed for the bus station.
I arrived at the bus station at 7:57 PM, but my bus does not leave until 10:45 PM. I had about three hours to burn. Good thing I brought my novel with me, and I progressed considerably on that novel. About an hour before my bus leaves, I striked a conversation with an Indian couple in the station. I knew they were Indian, but given the fact that there are tons of languages in India, I asked them what language they were speaking. And they said they were speaking Hindi. One topic led to another, and I ended up telling them I am a student of Linguistics. The husband turned out to be a tourist, but he is working in Chicago (where they are headed to that night) as a computer software programmer. He is a computer science graduate. He became interested in what I am studying, partly because he also deals with artificial intelligence, computational linguistics, among others.
Anyway, so we chatted for an hour, until my bus departed. My bus leaves at 10:45, while theirs is at 11:20. So when it was time for me to board, I boarded and then fell asleep.
The bus ride was ok, not really horrible, as other people say. We stopped at a couple of places along the way, namely Rochester, Syracuse, and finally New York City. I slept on the way, and only woke up during the breaks. But sometime around 12:00 midnight, a guy behind me started talking on the phone, and he had a quarrel apparently with his girlfriend. I overheard him and snippets of the conversation were like the following.
Guy: I kissed her, but that's it. I didn't do anything else.
Guy: Could you let me finish? Could you let me finish?
Guy: I love you, but let me finish!
Anyway, believe it or not, that conversation took about an hour and a half. His battery was getting low that's why he plugged his cellphone in an outlet while we were in a reststop for 15 minutes. That was about 1:30. That was when I bought a couple of donuts, apple juice, and breath mints. I ate them and then dozed off again, or at least, tried to. Good thing that phonecall didn't last all the way to New York City.
I woke up around 5:45 and I already saw the New York City suburbs. Then around 6:00 we went to the Lincoln Tunnel and then voila! We found ourselves in the middle of Manhattan already. The bus arrived at the terminal at 6:15 AM, just on schedule.
My appointment with my godmother (the Consul General of the Philippines in New York City) was at 9:00, so I had about 3 hours to spare. I went to a cafe, had breakfast, and read my novel again. I was there for about an hour and a half. I sipped my cup of coffee slowly, while reading the book. While I was there, I was joined a four elderly yet nice Austrian tourists. They were speaking in German, and since I knew German, I asked them whether they came from Germany, Austria, or Switzerland. They said they were from Austria, and that they are in the city for 5 days. Apparently, Austria is on holidays right now. I told them that my parents used to live in Vienna, and that I visited them and found Vienna to be fantastic. They were happy to see someone speak to them in German, although their English was perfect. My German was not, but they didn't mind, they were finishing my sentences, but in the end, it was a good conversation.
So at around 7:45, I was walking the streets of Manhattan, passed over Times Square, and saw the famous place where Tom Cruise ran mindlessly. I saw the manholes with the smoke coming out of them, and I saw the MTV studios that until now I only saw in TV, full of music fans wanting to be with their idols.
I reached the Philippine Consulate one hour earlier, but good thing there is a Barnes and Noble in front of it. I went in, and coerced myself to buy a CD. I bought a CD of the music by Philip Glass, a contemporary composer. The piece is called Music with Changing Parts, composed in the 70's for electronic ensemble. It is just one track, lasting a full hour. I started listening to it yesterday and it was just hypnotically fantastic.
Ok, I have been typing for thirty minutes now, and I still have tons to say. So I'd say I will make this post an installment, making this the first of I dunno, three? Four? Anyway, come back tomorrow for more.