Monday, March 23, 2009

In like a Lion, out like a Lamb

I had to post this before Tiff called her posting hiatus quits and beat me to it. This was such an outrageous occurrence, that it is possible she would have come out of hibernation for it.

Tiff is in town, let that be the preface to this entire story. On Friday I zipped down to the Newark airport to pick her up. She stated that she was starving, and since I've been there and done that we hit a drive-thru. This is shameful for me to admit, we went to McDonalds. I haven't been to a Mickey-Dees since the Food-Poisoning-Incident-of-2001. I will say that I only got a strawberry shake and a sprite. Food avoidance seemed the best option considering my last experience.

Food in hand, we headed for NYC. During rush hour. On a Friday night. Did I mention New York City? After an hour and forty five minutes we finally pulled up to the hotel. We gave the valet the Suby (I know, classy right?) and headed to check in. While standing in line I realized that I had left my phone in the car. I headed back to the valet service, waited for 10 minutes while they located my car, brought it up to the 1st level of underground parking then walked down to the 1st level of underground parking to retrieve the phone. At least it was in the car, had I found it in my purse while waiting I would have really felt like a dumb#$%.

Phone located, problem solved.
Next came the room. I'm sure Tiff will have much to say on this subject, all I will say is we are pretty sure that it was a converted janitor's closet (it was that small). Next on the list was the concierge that gave bad directions, very, very, bad directions. We proceeded to be 45 minutes late for our dinner reservation. On the plus side, the restaurant and food were excellent. I had amazing cheese and spinach ravioli in a sage-butter sauce. Yum.

After dinner we strolled back to the closet, ahem...hotel. We visited with a different woman at the concierge desk and asked for a nice place to listen to music and get some dessert. Enter the cab-driver-from-the-other-side-of-the-world, perhaps even from the underworld. This is where I would also like to interject, if you are cab driver in NYC and it's the first day of Spring, consider yourself fore-warned. Perhaps not so well fore-armed.

Tiff and I climbed in the cab. As we piled in we asked the driver, "Do you accept credit cards? We don't have cash." When he said yes, we proceeded to hand the little-man-in-a-turban the address of the place written down on a piece of paper. Easy, no? No miscommunication, no room for things to get lost in translation. Oh, ho I say! I thought for sure I was going to die or toss my delicious raviolis on that Mad-Hatter of a cab ride. Not pleasant.

We finally ended up in the general vicinity of where the lounge was supposed to be. Finally we asked the driver to pull over, we were close enough. Just as Tiff was ready to swipe her card the cabbie clicked the pay-out button. "No card!" he said. Ummmm, the first thing we asked when getting in the cab was "Do you accept credit cards? " Let's review. Is there really any way that can be misinterpreted? Apparently. The next section of this is highly embarrassing for me. As Ma Bowler would say "Bowlergirl, you are really loosing your cool." I think that Ma Bowler might have even put me in a permanent timeout.

So there you have it. I went from trying not to loose my dinner to loosing my temper in less than point two seconds. I yelled at the-little-man-in-a-turban. I said some very bad words. I screamed that I wasn't a stupid tourist to be taken for a ride (I failed to mention that he circled the block several we wouldn't notice). I proceeded to rant that there was no way we were paying him in cash since we had none. He responded with "Go to the ATM across the road." That did it. I yelled some more. I was calling the cops, this was ridiculous, I was calling the cab commissioner.... Tiff was kicking my sorry mean butt out of the car. She did what my mother would have done in that situation. She gave me a much needed timeout.

I stood fuming on the sidewalk while Tiff rationally dealt with the situation. Got some cash. Negotiated the $13 down to $5. Then walked away like a calm woman. Not like the mad woman that was still standing in an angry rage on the sidewalk (in case you lost track of the situation, I was the angry raging one standing on the sidewalk). Now we realized we were lost. The cabbie had sped away from the Banshee post-haste, leaving with the address of the lounge. We were somewhere in the Village, with no idea where to go.

First stop for Tiff, bathroom. This involved a Duane Reade, a bottle of water, some Skittles and Rollo's. Second stop, another street corner and another cab hailed. The entire time I had my arm out I feared that Karma was going to bite my sorry butt and send the same driver to pick us up again. Somehow we dodged that bullet and a very nice, not crazed, not miscommunicating driver picked us up. Third stop, movie theater in Time Square.

Here Tiff and I watched a terrible movie. Terrible, terrible. However, we decided amongst or two-selves that it was a much needed diversion. So there ended our adventurous evening. The first day of Spring came in a truly vengeful style. Hopefully the month of March will hold true to the saying, "In like a Lion, out like a Lamb". There was already one lion in the city this last week. I'm hoping it will be the last.

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