It had been two years and two months since I was last in New York, but who's counting?
I was back for a short three-day stint to attend a work training course, and it was amazing how many things were different and how many things were exactly the same.
Union Square Cafe is still as good as I remember, but I was happy to realize that we have found restaurants just as good (if not better) out in California now.
The cookbook selection at The Strand has expanded immensely, but their prices still can't beat Amazon, so I took a pass.
I visited Momofuku Noodle Bar to see how the ramen compared to California ramen. The pork buns were melt-in-your-mouth perfect, but the broth of the ramen couldn't compare to Ramen Dojo in San Mateo.
I made my first trip to one of the Momofuku Milk Bars to see what all the fuss was about.
I literally bought one of almost everything they sold. The compost cookies were amazing, and more addictive with every bite.
The "crack pie" (their words, not mine) was the most incredible dessert I've had in ages.
After I snapped the first photo, I thought I'd just take one bite. One bite turned into several and pretty soon I polished the whole thing off. Luckily, I bought the Momofuku Milk Bar cookbook (signed) when I was there, so I can make crack pie anytime I want (and have several hours to spare).
Since I was in the neighborhood, I also stopped by Dylan's Candy Bar. I knew they would have red Swedish fish to take home to John (since they have every candy ever made), so I picked up half a pound as a sorry-you-couldn't-be-here gift.
While it was fun to walk around and be in "The City" again, it made me realize how much I love my life in California.
As convenient as the subway can be, driving to the grocery store is a heck of a lot easier. As beautiful as the skyline can be, it's not as beautiful as a West Coast beach. And as much as I loved New York, California is my home.
Plus I had this gal waiting for me when I returned, which wasn't half bad. We napped the afternoon away, as I attempted to get rid of my jet lag. It's back to the grind, but it's my grind, so I don't mind.