Friday, January 02, 2004

Times Square

Some parents are super organized. Sunday is swimming day. Tuesday is library day. Reading from 9:00-9:30. And gross motor skills from 9:30-10:00. Uh, that's not me.

Usually I wake up and have no clue what I'll do with the kids that day. Today, Jonah is on vacation from pre-school, and the day is wide open. No plans. No babysitter. I have been on the phone making arrangements for a half an hour, and the plan is starting to take form.

I have to do some chores around here today. Maybe let one of Jonah's friends come over. Start unloading Christmas from the livingroom. At 4:00, we'll take the subway with my friend, Susan, to meet Steve in Times Square. And then, we'll all go to Dallas BBQ for dinner.

Dallas BBQ is a New York chain. I don't think it has left the city yet. Excellent and cheap barbecued chicken and potent margaritas. $4.95 for white chicken, corn bread, and a baked potato. It's not the Salt Lick in Austin, TX, but it's a great place to bring kids, because the food is out pronto, and it's pretty casual. I can let the kids play with cars under the table.

It's actually hard to find kid friendly places in New York City. There are whole sections of the city where kids are unwelcome. We took the kids last week to shop in the lower east side and Chinatown. The crowds nearly knocked them down. We walked down some side streets because Canal Street was too rough. There are also no public bathrooms which are oh so important for kids who hold off going until the last possible moment when they're holding the butts and jumping up and down.

Times Square is also one of those places that seems to despise strollers and slow walking four year olds. Crowds in a hurry to spot Eminem at MTV or to see the Producers or to take their picture next to the naked cowboy strumming his guitar in the middle of the street.

(BTW. I've heard people start talking about Times Square as the new ground zero. As the place most likely for terrorists to go medieval on our ass. Slightly stressful.)

We'll wait for Steve in the granite lobby of the large building where he works. And then we'll navigate through the crazed tourists to the dinner destination.

I like a challenge.

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