Week 3 was by far my favorite week here in New York! After a nice relaxing weekend, I started a very chaotic, but REALLY great week.
I started off Monday morning by meeting Shari Diamond, the teacher that I would be TAing for that week. I knew that we would hit it off right away and that this week of TAing would be a much better experience. Shari is a professor at Parsons during the school year and her photographs are extremely interesting and embody a lot of ideas that I really connect with. Check out her work! On top of really liking Shari and her work, the course was a Photoshop I class which is right up my alley. Throughout the week, Shari would describe how to use the basic functions and purposes of the software and then the two of us would walk around to work with people individually on what they had just learned. Towards the end of the week, Shari let me lecture on the different methods that I use in Photoshop as well. It was really wonderful to be able to have such hands on experience with teaching a class with a large range of ages, personalities and cultures. I felt like I was actually contributing and helping individuals a lot which was a really great feeling. This week with Shari’s class made me feel a lot more confident in the fact that I definitely want to be able to teach at some point in my life. I loved every minute of the class and I even learned some new ways of doing things!
During my lunch break Monday, I was also asked to TA a lighting course that was that night. I jumped on the opportunity because I am loving being a TA and I think I will learn a lot from being a TA for a lighting course! Because of this choice, however, I ended up working a 12 hour day! Yeesh! So far, I have only been to one of the courses, but Mark Morosse, the teacher for the class as well as the photographer for the Met, seems really fun and full of great information. I am really looking forward to the rest of my Monday nights with him!…There is also a kid in the class who looks and sounds like a young Arnold (you can imagine how I am saying that)…it. is. hilarious…and awesome.
Thursday, as I was getting ready to head home to FINALLY do laundry, I ran into these cuties in the lobby. Molly and I proceeded to play with the 30 day old, extremely sleepy puppies and their momma for a good, long time… inevitably ending another day without going to the laundromat… I can’t say it wasn’t worth it though!
Friday, after finishing a looooong but enjoyable week of work, Molly and I headed out to grab some food and walk around midtown for a while (in a 109 degree weather mind you). After we had had our fill, we decided that we would try hailing a taxi (because it was freakin’ hot!!) to get us to the Gael Pub where some of our friends from ICP were. This particular night was a fundraiser for one of our supervisor/friend’s favorite non-profits in New York so it was fun to be able to go see how New York does a little fundraising! When we arrived at the Gael Pub, we met up with two of our supervisors/friends, Leigh and Roberto. Both of them have been really great and helpful about getting us out and having fun in New York. A bit later, we were also joined by Sarah, a girl who is getting her MFA in Photography at Indiana University, as well as my good friend Ben! Sarah was in town visiting with her family so it was really wonderful that she could break away from family time for a bit to come hang out with us and give us a familiar face! Ben is one of my good friends from Indiana who once slept on my couch for a semester like a total hobo :). No, but actually, he is the best. Ben had never been to New York and I was in desperate need of some familiar faces so he hopped a flight out for the weekend. Little did we know how much we would get packed in this weekend.
Saturday morning, we headed out early so we could give Ben the fullest New York experience in just two and a half days. We hopped on our train and then subway in some horrendous heat to first head to the West Village for breakfast. After breakfast we wandered around finding random little shops and galleries here and there. I am continually surprised/appalled/confused at the photo galleries here. We went in to one where they were selling extremely large, pixilated, and just down right HORRIBLE prints for lots and lots of money! I guess it gives me a little hope… that or is just totally discouraging to see.
After we were over the West Village, we headed towards SoHo for some more shopping and galleries. Ben got an awesome custom belt made and Molly and I oogled at all of the women’s clothing that we will never be able to afford. As we made our way through SoHo, we finally made it to Canal Street, or as I like to call it, land of the creeps and awesome fake purses (awesome because they are actually really nice bags). Molly and I worked on a little hustling and came out with an armful of some good buys.
After our purse shopping frenzy, the three of us found ourselves in Chinatown. We walked around there for a while, giving Tony a little time to get to us from the Bronx. When we couldn’t take anymore walking, we finally wandered to Little Italy to find a good restaurant to meet Tony at for dinner. Our dinner there was great and the sitting down part was even better!
After dinner, the four of us headed over to the Highline. The Highline is a beautiful, elevated walkway of green space and interesting architecture that was built on some old, unused train tracks that were being threatened with demolition. Along the walk, there are musicians, artists, galleries, tasty treats, and much more. It is a really beautiful walkway to take during the sunset. Some of the foods being sold on the Highline are also very interesting and unique. Tony and I decided that we needed to get some homemade popsicles to beat the heat…. unfortunately, the heat beat mine, melting it right off its stick!
After that lovely sunset walk, Tony walked us around to show us the area before we decided that we had had enough walking and stopped at a restaurant for some tasty drinks. Strawberry Mojitos might be my new favorite summer drink!
Finally, after the longest day we have spent in New York so far, Ben, Molly, and I started the trek back home. It was the latest we had come back on the train since we moved here, so we had never seen the night crowd heading back to Long Island before. Boy, did they show their colors! All of a sudden, about half way home, I hear this huge splat on the ground and Ben laughing hysterically. I look over and a girl was getting sick….which proceeded to spread all over the train because of the jerking motions side to side. We, seemingly being the only coherent people on the train, climbed over seats to get out of that car….the others however, happily and drunkenly moseyed right through it. What a day…
After getting back to our house, before completely crashing, I looked down at my ankles to find that they had about doubled in width. Yeah…we walked a lot.
After our usual tradition of attending the Sunday farmer’s market, Tony came to pick Molly, Ben and me up for an adventure at the Bronx Zoo. The grounds are beautiful there. All of their “exhibits” had interesting facts and figures about the specific animal and the devastation that humans have made on their population- as well as methods of fixing/preventing. I think it is a really important component to the zoo and that it should become more prevalent in all zoos. The point is to preserve and educate and I think that the Bronx Zoo does a really great job at just that! Also, if you are really into birds, this is your place!
After a lot of walking around the Bronx Zoo, Molly, Ben, and I took our first express bus to get back to Manhattan to see the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Two summers ago, when I came to New York with my dad, we took a pretty extensive tour around the museum, so this time, I payed more attention to things that I could photograph to possibly use as stock for my images that I create in Photoshop. I am still amazed at its enormity and the mass amount of incredibly beautiful and iconic pieces of art that it holds.
After leaving the Met and realizing that we had completely skipped lunch, we desperately searched for a good place to eat… and naturally, we ended up at the Hard Rock Cafe on Times Square? Turns out, it was actually a really great decision. Since being in Little Italy, I had been craving some good bruschetta and boy did I get what I asked for. It was by far some of the best Bruschetta that I have ever had. Also, I really enjoyed that there was a very large poster of Justin Timberlake in the ladies restroom. Thank you Hard Rock.