Sometimes there are just days that slip by and I find myself completely immersed in my own world. The past few days have embodied that free-flowing and adventurous spirit I have come to call, “the Megventure“. Usually characterized by a series of rash events and unpredictable story lines, these “Megventure’s” are typically filled with close friends, spontaneity, and of course, an unmatched sense of wanderlust.
My Megventure began on Thursday night at a small Italian restaurant, tucked in the far confines of the East Village. Surrounded by some of my newest and closest friends, as well as two professors from the Tisch Center, I indulged in a delicious Insalate de Spinaci (Baby spinach, roasted almonds, ricotta salata, strawberries and balsamic reduction) and Fettucine al ragu di Salsiccia (Buckwheat tagliatelle with broccoli rabe puree, Italian sausage ragu and pecorino) at Paprika – t’was delicious! The best part of the night, however, was not the food, but the company. I was introduced to people within the department I would not otherwise would have had the opportunity to interact with, and also strengthened my relationship with one of my favorite professors, David Hollander. Sitting in such an intimate setting with only ten other people gave us the opportunity to open up, in a way that is not normally afforded in a classroom. I am so lucky to have had this amazing opportunity to get to know my classmates and professors on a much deeper level.
Friday night was an adventure in itself. I ventured out to Brooklyn for the second time (ever) with a few other classmates (all guys of course) to cheer on the Nets as they battled against the Detroit Pistons. So maybe “battled” might not be the best word, because the Nets blew them out, but it was a hell of a time if I may so myself. It was my first ever professional basketball game, and I am so glad I was able to experience it at Barclay’s. There is an ineffable vibe that certainly draws in the young people to the game – it was a sporting experience unlike any other. Though I am not a huge fan of professional basketball and the game was less than entertaining, I had such a great night at Barclay’s.
Saturday morning started with brunch at Veselka – days that start with brunch are usually ones worth remembering. And Saturday was no exception. I’m not one to complain, but after the horrendous winter that we had the past six months, it was so wonderful to finally break out the sandals and explore the city I have only begun to scratch the surface of. Saturday morning was the beginning of a day-long adventure throughout the city – one that resulted in a number of firsts. Following brunch with my best friends, Phebe and Ryan,and their two friends, we decided to go to the High Line in the West Village. For those of you who don’t know me very well, the High Line is a sanctuary of sorts of me, and one of my favorite places to take people when they visit the city.
Tori, Ryan, Phebe, and Graeme
We walked, talked, and wandered down the mile and half path before deciding to venture up to Times Square to expose Ryan’s girlfriend to the circus that is New York City. Phebe, Ryan, and I immediately decided to escape the mayhem and wander into yet another sanctuary – Central Park. Our tired legs yearned to rest, so we found some boulders and relaxed among their nooks and crannies. In the middle of relaxing, Ryan had an epiphany that we should go to the American Museum of Natural History to see the dinosaurs. My inner five-year-old self was excited beyond words – I had never been to a museum in NY and dinosaurs are so cool – what’s not to love? The AMNH was amazing (and crowded) but so worth it! Though we wandered aimlessly through the dinosaur exhibits and probably didn’t learn as much as we could have, it was the perfect end to a perfect day spent with friends. My favorite dinosaur, besides the T-Rex (Duh!) was the Megaloceros (for obvious reasons). The museum pulled at my child-like heart-strings and inspired me to get out and see more of my amazing city.
The rest of Saturday was a blur, as I prepared myself for an early wakeup the next day. Sunday was warranted by a soccer session at Gaelic Park and a less than exciting evening filled with homework. Little did I know that my sense of adventure would get the best of me and I would be once again on the road with my roommate, Erin and her friend, Alyson, to a wonderful restaurant in Chelsea. Don’t let the pictures of Co Pizza below deceive you – the restaurant was AMAZING. The wooden walls, dimmed lighting, and candles on the table made it feel like we were away from the hustle and bustle of the city. We all ordered one pizza and split the three flavors between us. I ordered the Cuattro Cipolla (4 Onion) and it was divine. The Straciatella and the Popeye were also lovely – I felt like I could just nom on them forever!
On the way home from Co, we encountered an abandoned subway car. I know what you’re thinking – DON’T ENTER, IT’S A TRAP! Don’t worry, we were fine (no creepy guys, no bad smells, you get the picture). My inner-child awoke and before I knew it, I began to swing from pole to pole until the train began it’s journey along 14th street.Though the weekend seemed to pass by in a single instant, I am so incredibly fortunate to have spent my Megventure of a weekend with my closest friends.
Until next time!