Tuesday, May 06, 2008

No time to breathe!

Participants:- Abhinav Pathak, Shreerang Dixit, Aditi Sodhi, Tanmoy Roy


1. Times Sq and NY Public Library

These are not one of my fav places to go - but then as per the 'Click lots of pics' tourist manual of the state of NY- these are some of the places to visit (along with Liberty aunty and Empire State). Since we didn't have enough time to squeeze out in our time table - Time Sq during the day. Although as per the manual - it needs to be visited with awe and surprise in the eyes during the night, we could only manage to stare foolishly and consequently look happy during the day.


I am no expert but I have a faint idea about excellence, at least most of the times. With a star cast which had well established Hollywood actors and even boasted of academy award winners (among various others) – it was a high 'expectancy event'. The production managers and the director (remember Capote from the movie by the same name?) were also widely respected Hollywood entities. I remember one of my friends gasping – how did you get the tickets?

The play surrounded a distressed situation of an alcohol and drugs addicted family and still proved to be a laughing riot on more than one occasion. It took turns in invoking pity, empathy, sympathy, hatred, disgust … I am running out of words. It lead to happiness for the people sitting there as they felt richer by the end of it. Highly recommended for people visiting NY!


3. Strands Book Store

Before the next show began we had a couple of hours for snacks and visit to what they claim is the World's biggest bookstore. Supposedly 18 miles of books!! I couldn't even check out one section. My friends gave me enough inferiority-complex by discussing literature, I had no clue about.


4. Fuerzabruta (meaning Brute Force)

This was the surprise package. I mean, we had an idea that it should turn out to be crazy and whacky. The only thing which we had no idea on was – the extent of craziness. Well it was again, worth every penny spent. I mean this is the closest you can get to understand the effects of cocaine, without actually taking any. Not often do you see, women floating in the sky full of water, or running around on the walls, or men falling off a conveyer belt, or getting hit by doors and walls (I skip the rest, to refrain from sounding 'amusingly' bored).



We ended the day with a live contemporary Jazz performance by a 'tight' and successful band. What I missed out on the website was a small highlighted notice about the need to call separately (apart from buying the ticket) to reserve a table. As dumb as it can sound- I obviously didn't imagine that I will have to call even after paying for the tickets 3 days in advance. Anyway, as we arrived there – we were told to 'stand by the bar' and enjoy the show. On normal days this wouldn't have been a problem, but given the amount of exhaustion we had undergone- our knees couldn't even withstand our weight for 20 mins. So I used my shameless skills to embarrass the manager till he gave us a table. All well that ends J




1. Brooklyn Art Museum

We couldn't cover much here as one of the morons had to leave that day. We did cover African and Japanese sections among a few others.


2. Roadside vendors/Wall St.

You can't go back from NY without eating at the road side vendors (alas, one of us did). Even though it was chilly – we sat outside and ate. A 'Starbucks hour' had to be undertaken, to kill the chill that had gotten under the skin.

For people coming for the first time to NY- Wall St. and NYSE is a must visit; more so for people belonging to the Finance domain (whatever that means). So we spend some time to look at the old buildings and click pictures (like so many others on the same street), after which it is time to move to Brooklyn bridge.

3. Brooklyn Bridge

As the sun is about to set – we start walking on the Brooklyn bridge. Looking at the activity and the energy on the bridge – it fills us with excitement. One of my friends is interested in a lot of 'solo' snaps. He has his wished fulfilled.

4. Pier 17

This is a Pier near the bridge which attracts a lot of people. A place to sit in the open air, sip wine, shop, listen to music and talk, while the river passes by. With a few more pictures of Brooklyn bridge we come back home.

5. More Books!

Close to our crashing ground, there happens to be a book shop. My friends buy me some (five actually) books as a part of the birthday present treaty. One of them happens to be Ullysses. Now that I have been presented, there is no escape. I will have to finish it.


1. Gravid Water- Experimental Theater

The rains prevented us from going out as per our original plan of visiting the 'typical tourist spots' as per the manual. So finally in the evening, we decided to brave the rains and go watch an interesting form of theater. The concept is to enact specific scenes from various plays using regular actors and some improvisers. The actors have prepared the scenes like they would normally do, but the improvisers, like the audience, have no idea about what the scene will be. They just land up at the scene and start acting. This confusion leads to extremely funny situations as the actors are expected to stick to their original dialogues, as far possible.


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