Nancy and I wanted to reward ourselves – we received both of our COVID shots, so we planned an overnight in New York City. The secondary purpose of our visit was to see how the city looked. We had not visited New York for a year since the pandemic began.
We stayed in the Conrad Hotel in Lower Manhattan. The staff could not have been nicer and we felt perfectly safe. The room had been empty for 72 hours prior to our visit. There must have been only a few people in the hotel that evening, although there was supposed to be a group coming in the next night that booked the entire hotel for a week. There were no hints as to the nature of the group.
We visited the David Hockney art exhibit at the JP Morgan Library and Museum. Our plan was to walk; we could use the exercise. Second, we still wanted to avoid exposure on the subway or cabs. There was good interest in the exhibit but we also felt the Museum planned the proper number of visitors for the space.
We met Jimmy Roberts, my cousin at the exhibit. Afterwards, I wanted a coffee. We tried three coffee shop/restaurants before we found a take out Sushi place that was open. I substituted Green tea which also has lots of caffeine. My estimate would be that 25% of the restaurants and storefronts in the city either were closed or out of business. That percentage might be a good one for some other elements city life. I would say the traffic was 25% lighter than usual, both vehicular and foot traffic.
Construction is going on most everywhere in the city as it is in most places.
There were some bubble structures with individual tables at the El Vez Mexican restaurant outside our hotel. We decided that looked safe to dine in. It was a tad cold, but fun.
The next day, we drove down Fifth Avenue. The area looked pretty much the same as always with the Plaza Hotel, Saks, and the upscale jewelers.
As we left the hotel in Battery Park, we drove through an area once filled with warehouses that have been repurposed to apartments and other uses. We wondered how excess office space in New York will be repurposed as we come out of the pandemic.
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