Saturday, March 20, 2010

no passport needed

The beautiful weather led us to journey outside of Manhattan. And as luck would have it the Q train deposited us right in the middle of Brighton Beach otherwise known as Little Odessa. Every nook and cranny is Russian. Every sign is in Russian. Every conversation we attempted to eavesdrop on was in Russian. Every restaurant was well, Russian. It is incredible and certainly deserves a complete day of its own tour.

If we had not already promised our smallest traveler a trip to the infamous Nathan's down the boardwalk in Coney Island we definitely would have dined at the this place! It is right on the boardwalk and looks to be not only delicious but filled with great characters as well. It has been bumped up to the top of "Must do in Near Future" list.

After a cold, snowy, wet, did I mention cold, snowy, cold winter we were soaking in every ounce of sunshine available. We walked to Brighton Beach's most eclectic neighbor...the one and only Coney Island. As previous posts mention, I heart Coney Island. The color, the sounds, the people, the smells make it truly one of a kind. Even on this random warmth of a mid-March day the boardwalk was alive and filled. Nathan's had many people in line to enjoy the birthplace of the famous hot dog. It was as if a huge winter cloud had been lifted...and it had!

While the sand in Coney Island is not the greatest we took direction from the sun and enjoyed a view hours of the beach.

Kites were flying, children were playing and the waves sounded like true music to our ears.

This week's forecast doesn't look so grand. After discovering a new place to check out (Brighton Beach) and soaking up some delicious rays of goodness from the sun I think we just might be able to make it through. Spring has to be on her way right?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

District of Columbia

Last weekend we headed to Penn Station and hopped on Amtrak to Washington, DC. Three hours later we were smack in the middle of our Nation's Capital. It has been eight years since last enjoying DC. It is a lovely place. The entire area was still wrapped in a thick blanket of snow. The white made some of the sights even more spectacular. Thomas Jefferson was thick with the white. The Korean War Memorial was even more realistic with the soldiers trudging through the heavy white. As a daughter of a veteran it made it even more touching. When reading about the Korean War there is always mention of the terrible winter conditions. Seeing the statues in that exact climate makes one reflect even deeper on what these men did for our country.

On our trip to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum we had the honor of the seeing the ground breaking Tuskegee Airman. It was quite a lasting lesson and they looked spry in their red coats. The notorious Abe Lincoln had a breathtaking view of a frozen solid Reflecting Pool. We spent many a fun moment taking the opportunity to walk and play on the frozen water in the shadows of our Nation's treasures.

Sunday morning we started the day in the Sculpture Garden of the National Art Gallery. The whimsical and thought provoking pieces were amazing. And who knew our second grader could give us a lesson and insight on the works of Claus Oldenburg?

Georgetown, Embassy Row, the National Cathedral were all taken in with oohhing and ahhing by us. The trip was made even better by a tasty Italian meal and chin-wag evening with a dear friend.

It had been too long since we enjoyed DC. It will now be a more regular journey.