Sunday, October 16, 2011

City Views, Country Dreams

Good evening from New York.

It's been quite a while since I last wrote.  Before offering up my alibi, I would first like to thank all you kind folks who've left lovely messages

Not long after that prior post I got sick, catching some sort of cold that had a big bad cough as its sidekick.  Around the same time, demands of my job ratcheted up a bit.  Not a great combination, but I am delighted to report that weeks later there's improvement on all fronts.

About the time that my cough was on the upswing, I chose to go ahead with a long-planned get together with the truly marvelous, well-traveled Vagabonde, who was visiting New York with her husband.  Yet again, I experienced that wonderful feeling of meeting a fellow blogger and having the sense that we've known each other for a long, long time.  Even better,   neither Vagabonde nor her husband seem to have taken my cough home with them as a New York souvenir.

By last weekend, I was feeling much better, and ventured over to Fifth Avenue to have a glimpse of the Hispanic version of the Columbus Day Parade, in which contingents from all the Central and South American countries settled by Spain show the rest of us their costumes, music and dance.  

The weather was perfect.

So many bright colors and fantastic costumes for men, women and children.

You can see from the view of the sidewalk that there were very small numbers of folks viewing the parade.  The parade's route used to run from midtown all the way up Fifth Avenue to 79th Street.  No longer.  This year's route was barely a mile long.  I hope that this does not signal a trend toward shrinking festivities.  The "big" Columbus Day parade, honoring Italy, is held on Columbus Day and draws much larger crowds.

Look at these adorable children!  I hope to see them again next year.

This next fellow looks a bit fearsome.  I guess that I also look forward to seeing him again next year.

I think that this lady with parasol will also be wanting to join the parade in October 2012.

I left the parade route and walked a bit further up Madison Avenue, stopping for a delicious hazelnut gelato, and engaging in some window shopping.  I liked the clean lines and harmonious colors of these textiles.  Somehow, I cannot remember the name of the shop!

Refreshed by that gelato, I then walked back across Central Park to the West Side, and admired the view of the different greens in the sun and shadows of the Sheeps Meadow, with the Central Park South buildings in the distance.  It was a bit too cool for any sunbathing, but perfect for ambling around, playing with frisbees, or just sitting and talking.

And so, that Sunday drew to a close, and another work week began.

Look at the amusing shiny blue bird with silver ball that has appeared overnight on the entryway to my local subway station.  How can you possibly look at this and not smile?

Here is another view to show you the joyous attitude that this very big bird wants to share with all of us passersby.

Tomorrow morning when I set out on my commute to work I am counting on this gleaming vision to work its magic.  (I promise to try to find out more about the identity of the sculptor.)

Best wishes to you all.


  1. Thanks for the little tour. Most of us here in the midwest love to see anything we can of New York, and what a funny big blue bird!

  2. How lovely that you had a chance to meet the interesting and well-written Vagabonde! We were to meet earlier this year, in Southern California, but TGD's illness caused a postponement.
    I'm glad that the cough is giving up its grasp on you. It seems to me that fall, more than any other season, calls for a clear head and good health so that we can get outside in the cool, crisp sunshine and enjoy every last bit of it.
    That Bluebird of Happiness worked its magic on me too!

  3. So glad that you're feeling better! And thanks for the view of the parade.
    I take it you didn't get as far as the Occupy people. I realize that you were otherwise occupied.
    Hope you have a grand week!
    And that bird really is something else!

  4. So good to hear that you are well again and had a beautiful Sunday watching the parade!

    The Blue Bird is really interesting. Wonder where it comes from? A migrating species? ;-)

    Best wishes,

  5. Ah, I wondered where you were...I am very glad to hear that you're on the mend, but the double whammy of work and sickness is not good.

    That bluebird reminds me of a scene from The Rescuers, where the seagull is landing in a rather ungainly fashion!

  6. I am so glad you are now feeling better Frances. It seems that with Autumn comes a collection of nasty 'bugs', chesty coughs, colds and things we could do without.
    Your tour was as ever, fascinating. Those costumes are a marvel! the children looked as though they were having such a good time.
    Your bluebird is great!

  7. I'm so glad to hear you're feeling better.

    It was also very pleasant to spend a lovely pictorial Sunday afternoon with you, even if I didn't see it until Monday morning!!

  8. What a lovely Bluebird! You always show us quite the nicest aspects of New York. So glad you had a chance to meet Vagabonde. I'm sure you had a lot to talk about. Hope you are properly over your cold. Take it easy now for a few days.

  9. It is wonderful to have you back.

    I think New York is the only city I have visited in which I immediately felt at home. Strangely wonderful.

    It is good news you are feeling better. Are you finding work easier now, then?

    When I looked at your parade pictures it reminded me again how much I love the ephemeral nature of beautiful costumes. Illusion is a wonderfully exciting thing and I find the art of appearance fascinating too. Which is strange as I also like honesty and dislike subterfuge.

    I'm so sorry to warble on... I was so touched to read your kind, kind words today. Our grief is very real and we miss the presence of our dear, sweet cat. I think the very worst thing is to have a trusting animal in your care and not to be able to work miracles.

    Thank you and have a good week.


  10. Hi Frances,

    Glad to hear you are feeling better and had some good company too! I enjoyed seeing your photo's of the parade. It looks like a very cheerful event.

    Enjoy the blue skies & sun!

    Lieve groet, Madelief x

  11. Lovely to see your photos.I love New York.We have only been once but it still remains my favourite holiday.We would love to come again-maybe one day.

  12. Just love that blue birdie! I've got just the place for it in my front garden.

  13. I never knew about the Spanish Columbus Day festivities!
    Loved your wander round your part of town.
    I so rarely get up there but hope to take a fall walk in Central Park pretty soon.
    Buster sends lots of love!

  14. What, this bird appeared overnight? Magic!

    NY is a magical place altogether, to judge from your blog; a parade every five minutes, people out in gorgeous colours and costumes enjoying themselves.

    Somehow, I see NY in black and white and yellow (the cabs), with people rushing hither and thither, rather than taking leisurely strolls in Central Park.

    I'm sorry you've been poorly, hope you did a lot of pampering yourself.

    Stay well and take care.

  15. It's not good to hear that you've been struck down by a horrid cold and another cough at a time when you've been feeling the pressure at work too. I do hope that you're completely recovered now.

    I wonder if parades are feeling the pinch too, if this one was shorter than usual? Still, someone's feeling full of the joys to plant the big, blue bird!

    Lucky Vagabonde, is another thought that went through my head reading this. There's a few of us bloggers now who will look at any glimpse of New York and think of the time we spent with you!

  16. Hello Frances I'm glad you're feeling better now.... those coughs can really linger on. I enjoyed all your wonderful photos of the costumes today, and those subtle and stylish fabrics you spotted too. The big funny blue bird is very entertaining and a rather wonderful shape viewed from all angles! I hope you continue to feel better and enjoy the autumn days.
    Take care. Helen x

  17. I love that bird there is something very dr zuess about him, as you say how can one not see him and smile!

  18. the blue sculpture looks like something a child would bounce on and the costumes remind me of a mad programme on TV here which centres on a Brighton cake shop, the maddest roccoco designs and enthusiasm. Hope you're back to full strength, soon XCX

  19. I am glad that you have recovered - hope work isn't too bad as well. I love seeing your pictures of the goings on in New York and had missed them!

    Pomona x

  20. Glad to hear that you are on the mend and have kicked that nasty cough to the curb.

    It looks like the festivities and sunshine have cheered you, not to mention that big blue bird which put me in mind of Sesame Street.

  21. hehe LOVE the big blue bird. If I had made him, he would be the Penguin and the Pearl.

    SWorry to learn you have been feeling unwell, but glad to hear you are improved xx

  22. Blue Bird is too cute, and you're right - guaranteed to make one smile. I'm so glad to see a new post from you! Pleased to hear that you're feeling better, especially as New York looks glorious in autumn sunshine. I hope your weather this weekend is just as good!

  23. Short trip to N.Y. wonderful city ... I am pleased to hear from you, me, on the other side of the globe! (and I saw some nice pairs of socks that would be appreciated here in a little cold that day).
    See you soon ...( Excuse me for bad English)

  24. Hello dear Frances,

    What fabulous colourful costumes in that parade.

    Love the blue birdie.!

    Thank you for sharing your wonderful New York pictures with us Frances, and I do hope you are feeling much better after that horrid cold.


  25. I just wanted to say thank you for your lovely comments on my blog - they don't come through with an email address so I can't respond directly, but I really do appreciate them!

    Pomona x

  26. Sorry to hear you have been unwell my friend; but delighted that you are feeling better and that you were able to meet Vagabonde. The pics, as always, are fabulous. You are a truly talented lady.

  27. Sorry to hear you have been ill, hope you are fully recovered now.

    What a lovely post - I have always had this romantic idea of visiting New York in the autumn (especially around Halloween) but havent managed it yet :(

    Have to keep saving up!


  28. Frances - your email still doesn't appear - if you go to Edit Profile, that is where you can do it, I think - tick the box near the top, and make sure you have an email address entered in lower down.

    Pomona x

  29. It sounds like you've had the same nasty little bug I've had, for such a small bug, it causes a huge amount of misery doesn't it? I'm glad to hear you're recovered now. New York has a lot of parades doesn't it? I think this is a wonderful thing, showing real community spirit. And what wonderful costumes! I do like that fabric you spotted. Maybe the beginnings of something for your self perhaps? So glad you're well Frances. Love Vanessa xxx

  30. I am glad to hear that you are better now! Why does work get so demanding in autumn? O_o
    I heard on the news that the east coast had snow! I hope you are staying warm! I haven't blogged for a month myself but will be able to do so very soon!

    Happy Halloween!

  31. I hope you are still feeling well Frances after your poorly spell. Thank you for your good wishes by the way. I hope you have a good Halloween tomorrow and share with us how it is celebrated in New York.
    The Irish presidency is a bit of a 'figurehead' like the UK monarch as far as I know and I am pleased you are interested as I am sure many many folk in your city are.
    When I win the lottery which I hope will be soon (!) we will share some time together I promise.

  32. I am so happy to hear that you feel better. I felt a bit guilty when we met to have you talking to me when your throat was giving you so much pain. At the same time I was pleased to talk with you after having read your blog. Before we met at Café Lalo my husband said “How are you going to recognize this lady – you have never seen her?” I told him “I’ll know her” then he added “what will you talk about since you don’t know each other?” I answered that we knew each other very well, not to worry, just as we know all the kind bloggers who come to our blogs and read our posts and we read theirs– they are as much our friends as the friends we know in our neighborhood. We really had a great time and the time went too fast. Afterwards my husband said that it did seem that we had just met an old friend and was delighted to have been included.

    The parade you show us looks like so much fun – always something exciting going on in New York for sure – what a city!

  33. Love that blue bird!
    And now you have unseasonally early
    I do hope that one day you'll blog that you've met me in New York... it's on my 'to do' list!