October 3, 2013 at 4:09 pm
You can’t visit the national parks right now because the federal (non-)government is shutdown, but you can read this blog entry about my recent visit to the Smoky Mountains National Park. There is no “e” in “Smoky,” by the way. I checked. If you really want to use an “e” you can call the mountains “The Smokies.”
I ended up in the Smokies because my mom and I wanted to get together but didn’t want to fly anywhere. So we looked at the map and it turns out that halfway between Indianapolis and Chapel Hill sits…Dollywood! But there also appeared to be some mountains in the area, so we thought we’d check those out after we’d spent the previous day running around Dolly Parton’s theme park. (I’ll post about that eventually, I promise.)
We started out by stopping at the Sugarlands visitor’s center where we picked up some helpful brochures and watched a 20-minute movie about the Smoky Mountains. Nowhere did it explain why the area was called the Sugarlands, which I was particularly curious about. I [...]
June 27, 2012 at 7:57 am
Oh, right, I did stuff last weekend too
Before I regale you with tales of what I did during my second weekend in New York, let me flash back to the previous weekend which I forgot to blog about. Whoops! I did brunch at Good Enough to Eat, a cute little place which features a white picket fence on the sidewalk. My table was shoved right next to one with another couple, which was weird because I could hear their entire conversation but had to act like I wasn’t there. Another hazard of eating alone. I got the yummy Peter Paul Pancakes which were served “with Belgian chocolate and coconut, topped with toasted coconut,” though what that has to do with anyone named Peter or Paul is anyone’s guess. And what happened to Mary? Doesn’t she get pancakes too? (Some instant Googling reveals that “Peter Paul” probably refers to a brand of coconut flour, though I had to go to the second page of results to figure that out. The second page! You’re really slipping, Google.) [...]
June 25, 2012 at 7:58 am
I was a big fan of the musical RENT in high school, so the best part of visiting the Lower East Side on Thursday morning was accidentally stumbling upon Avenue B and realizing, “Oh my God! This is where RENT happens! Is the Cat Scratch Club around here too?”
I did not find the Cat Scratch Club, nor did I seriously look for it. I did look for the Clinton St. Bakery because both Carol and Ilene said they’d cut a bitch for their pancakes. Ok, they might not have said it in those exact terms, but I think it was implied. I ate there on March 1st, which means I just barely missed visiting the restaurant during national pancake month. They hadn’t taken down their national pancake month signage yet, so I felt particularly disappointed, like they were rubbing powdered sugar in my wound and drizzling it with chocolate syrup.
The pancakes were delicious, but I did experience a brief moment of terror when I tried to pay with a credit card and they told me [...]
June 22, 2012 at 7:57 am
Tuesday morning I had to roll out of bed fairly early because the maid was coming. It must be nice to have a maid, but it’s not that nice to wake up early on vacation. Actually, it wasn’t that early, but my sleeping schedule was rather effed up that month, partly because of the medication I was on.
Anyway, I managed to get vertical, get dressed, and get out the door. I took the subway to the West Village area so I could walk the High Line, a raised walkway that used to be a railway. In that sense it reminds me of the Promenade Plantee I visited in Paris, but with less graffiti. It overlooks the Hudson River and in the summer it’s probably prettier than it was at the end of February. I had planned to walk the whole path, but it was an overcast day, chilly, and my feet still hurt from walking to Brooklyn the day before. I was also entering that period of mild depression I blogged about recently. [...]
June 20, 2012 at 7:58 am
Hey, remember when I visited New York last February? No? I barely do either! But I’m finally blogging about it based on all the notes I took. Pen and paper are my second hippocampus.
The Brooklyn Bridge is held together with duct tape. I kid you not. Duct tape. Kentucky chrome. Holding the Brooklyn Bridge together. But we’ll get to that.
When I wasn’t manically coding web sites during my first two days in the city, I was reading a print-out of the comments you guys left on my post asking for recommendations. Thanks for that! I love to plan, plan, plan, my vacations, but I felt like I was cramming the night before a final for this one. I didn’t flesh out my itinerary until I was in the city studying your crib notes. I circled anything that was mentioned more than once, and with some help from Google I made a list of what I wanted to see and where I wanted to eat. I wasn’t sure how many days I would have free [...]