Monday, May 30, 2011

Pictures from NYC/BEA Part I

Last Sunday I was able to venture back to New York City for the first time in about five years. This time around, I was determined to take more pictures! We stayed in a different part of the city from the other times - near Bryant Park in Midtown, away from the fun/crazy atmosphere of Times Square and all that jazz.

Sunday Highlights
  • Swapping 90 degree weather for overcast 60something-degree weather
  • Eating at Tir Na nOg Irish pub
  • Realizing that the Mapquest app is the most amazing invention ever
  • Shopping at this humongous department store called Century 21, which is actually across the street from the WTC
  • trying to eat scrumptious clam chowder without slurping at our hotel's seafood restaurant and eavesdropping on the funny drunk people's conversations at the bar
Tir Na nOg & inscriptions on the wall...reminds me of something out of LORD OF THE RINGS
View of our hotel near 5th Ave.
A really cool, huge department store that is good for finding amazing deals, but not good if you're a slight germaphobe like I am and get nervous being squeezed next to sweaty strangers
View across from the store, looking at the WTC site
How coincidental! In town for a book expo, and our hotel is right across from a branch of the NYPL :)
This picture weirds me out because I'm not really sure what I was looking at...moving on...
Chocolate store! Chocolate store! And they had huge bowls of oatmeal for like $1.50. DEAL!

Monday Highlights
  • Checking in at BEA, finding out that I did register correctly and, after months of being confused and hearing all sorts of differing accounts from different sources, finding out that press attendees did get in free (Eleni and Jennifer, if you're reading this by chance...HIGH FREAKING FIVE), and getting to see what the Javits looked like when it pre-show
  • Having the whole day to mill around the city, walk and shed off some of the graduation cake that I'd previously devoured...and not getting lost (yet).
  • Walked down to the Strand bookstore - 18 miles of books. Fascinating! I bought 2 totes, 3 shirts, but only 3 books - Guardian of the Gate by Michelle Zink; The Twilight Saga: The Official Illustrated Guide by Stephenie Meyer (because it was only like $10) and, ahem, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.
  • Went straight from one bookstore to another - Books of Wonder on 18th Street. Okay guys, the Strand is cool and everything (like, astronomically cool), but Books of Wonder is without a doubt, the BEST BOOKSTORE IN THE WORLD. Yes, it is cooler than London's Travel Bookshop (you know, "the one that only sells travel books." - Notting Hill). Seriously, if you guys have seen You've Got Mail...I originally thought that this was where they filmed Meg Ryan's Shop Around the Corner. It wasn't, but it was that kind of atmosphere. And joy of all joys, they had a cupcake bakery-cafe adjoining the bookstore. Yeah, I spent upwards of 3 hours in here after almost bankrupting myself with The Cabinet of Wonders and The Celestial Globe by Marie Rutkoski, Unwind by Neal Shusterman, Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness, Entwined by Heather Dixon, and The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman.
  • Because I was too lazy to go back uptown, I didn't go to the Harry Potter Exhibit...but I heard it was pretty cool :)
  • Went to the Teen Author Carnival, got within a few feet of some of the coolest YA authors without any weird business happening on my part, and met up with my future BEA coaches, support group, and friends: Jennifer from Reading with Tequila, Taschima from Bloody Bookaholic, Lexie from Poisoned Rationality, Emily from Red House Books, and Briana from BAM Book Reviews.
  • Being in New York and highly anticipating the beginning of BEA the next morning did NOT, however, keep us from catching the finale of "Dancing with the Stars." Go Hines & Kym!
Walking down 5th, I noticed a bunch of people standing in the middle of the street, taking pictures of a big, brown and kind of dirty-looking building. I was like, "Why are they all taking pictures of that big, brown, dirty-looking building?" then realized it was the Empire State Building. Ahh! And then I just *had* to take a picture too - after all, that's where the Greek gods live!
The Strand, 18 miles of books!

The coolest, Hugh-Grant's-bookshop-ain't-got-nothin-on-this bookstore in the world!
Books of Wonder!
Inside Books of Wonder, right in front of their enormous Dr. Seuss section
Hey Big Spender! Those are just about the cutest cupcakes I've ever seen!
The books I bought at Books of Wonder, plus my cupcake!

One of the few only-semi-blurry TAC pictures.
From left: Malinda Lo, Carol Estby Dagg, Michelle Zink, Courtney Allison Moulton, and Andrea Cremer
Looking into Bryant Park, which was right across the street from our hotel

BEA Pictures - Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday - will be uploaded shortly!
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