I really can’t believe it’s July already, wherever does the time go?! Other than Tom’s birthday nothing especially exciting has happened to us lately, and I find that the higher temperatures & humidity (ugh) make everything a little more challenging, so rather than exerting myself to write about anything in detail I thought I’d just share a few photos…
Great excitement in the neighbourhood one Sunday afternoon, as the local synagogue had a street party and brought their Torah scrolls out to dance. From what we could gather it may have been part of a Torah dedication ceremony (do I have any Jewish readers who can enlighten me?) and it was all tremendous fun – the truck with the crown on top was actually a giant sound system, which serenaded us for several hours.
One Saturday as I wandered towards Central Park I stumbled upon a crowd of excited birdwatchers on 5th Avenue. I vaguely remembered having read something about some nesting birds of prey, so I dutifully pointed my camera in the right direction and zoomed in as far as it would go. Having done some further research (translation: looked at somebody else’s blog) it’s just possible that these are fledgling red-tailed hawks. Again, if you actually know about such things please feel free to set me straight.
Meanwhile, further down 5th Avenue… I’m not entirely sure why LV is using dinosaur skeletons in their latest window display, but I rather like them!
The cathedral church of St John the Divine is an impressive building, and a cool sanctuary on a hot summer afternoon. Allegedly conceived as a rival to the beautiful (Catholic) St Patrick’s Cathedral, building work commenced in late 1892, & it is currently one of the two largest cathedrals in the world (Liverpool is the other). Personally, I found it rather sinister and austere, without the charm of many of the smaller cathedrals I’ve visited (the lack of rood screen may have contributed to this).
You can hardly go anywhere in summertime New York without encountering some free open-air culture of some sort, with an incredible range of theatre, concerts, and movie screenings to choose from. We’ve put together a list of our own must-sees, the first of which was the Hudson Warehouse production of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged). This wonderful play was staged just below the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ monument in Riverside Park (pictured, with a photobomber who turned out to be one of the actors), and we loved it.
I normally try to play down my current expat-wife status but now and then it is really very nice to take advantage of it, especially when it means getting to see a hot new exhibition while everyone else is at work. The Huffington Post has described it much better than I can, so read their report if you’re interested – suffice it to say that I thought it was brilliant.
For Tom’s birthday he wanted to go to New York Aquarium in Coney Island. They’re still recovering from Hurricane Sandy, and most of the animals were taking it easy in the heat of the day (see otter, above), but I was excited to see the two walruses, and we loved the sea-lion show – this is Duke and his trainer:
And finally, Tom’s birthday dinner at the lovely Blue Smoke restaurant. We didn’t really need dessert after stuffing ourselves with fried chicken and BBQ ribs, but it was just as well that we ordered some anyway!