Separated and Distracted

Sunday, February 08, 2009 Road Junkies 0 Comments

New York treated us to a day of mild weather on this February Sunday. The morning temperature was in the mid-fifties, so we were able to leave the heavy coats in the apartment as we headed out in search of some New York letterboxes. There aren't any letterboxes in Times Square, but we caught the 1 train at the Times Square subway station for a ride down to Battery Park at the southern end of Manhattan.Being naive out-of-towners, we didn't realize that you needed to be in one of the first five cars on the train to be able to exit at the South Ferry station-- really just a platform. So we were still on the train after it looped and headed back uptown. We decided to get off at Rector Street, the first station going back north. Our subway driver was apparently in a bit of a hurry. Maybe his shift was about to end. When the train stopped at the Rector Street station, Ken exited, as did a French family. Unfortunately, the doors closed immediately, before Dianne and some other passengers could step through. It was sort of like a scene from the movies. Ken was there in the station watching the train zoom away, and Dianne was on the train watching him fade into the distance-- well, more like zip, actually.

Dianne covered the mile back to Rector Street on foot and we were reunited shortly but we were unable to get to the letterbox in Battery Park. The park is undergoing some renovation, and the tree where the box is hidden is in an area that is currently off limits to pedestrians. On this mild Sunday morning, the park was much too busy to allow any stealthy slipping into the area undetected, so we had to save this one for another trip.

The R train took us over to Prospect Park in Brooklyn where our next letterboxes were awaiting us. We stuck very close together when exiting the train. Today's warm temperatures are quite a contrast to New York's recent weather as the frozen lake at Prospect Park attested. There were several signs like this around the lake, each with an ice rescue ladder. Soon we broke the ice metaphorically and found our first New York letterbox. We left a little North Carolina hitchhiker there to keep it company.
We found a total of three boxes in Prospect Park before heading down to Coney Island, where we discovered that the letterbox at the New York Aquarium was missing. An hour subway ride took us back to Times Square for our daily visit to the TKTS booth. Tickets were available for the play at the top of our "want to see" list-- Distracted with Cynthia Nixon. Described as "a fast-paced and disarmingly funny look at parenting in the age of the Internet and Ritalin" this premiere production was excellent. Casting was perfect, the set was clever and high-tech, and we loved it.

Total walking distance for the day: 7.5 miles