Last week, after Falsettos closed, Orrin and I hopped in the car with the babies for a leisurely 10 hour drive to New York. As you can imagine, New York City holds a special place in my heart, and so it was with great anticipation that we departed for our babies’ first visit.
First off, 10 hour car rides with two babies are not easy. But I’m not really sure they are that much more difficult than a 1.5 hour plane ride. By the time you get to the airport, wait in line, go through security, wait around, board the plane, wait on the runway, depart, land and taxi, you are almost looking at a similar journey length to driving. We learned on the drive that rest stops can be fantastic playgrounds. Who needs slides and swings when you can make an obstacle course out of restaurant tables, jumping from one to the other, and have an unlimited number of plastic straws to chew on.
New York is a fantastic city for kids. Central Park is unbelievable, and while I’ve always appreciated it, I appreciated it so much more through the eyes of almost one-year-olds. The packed playgrounds, the remote control boats, the zoo – it’s a pretty fantastic place. I wish Toronto had something comparable in the centre of the city. The subway is remarkably mesmerizing for infants and ours made at least a dozen friends each ride. The sidewalks are nice and wide, offering lots of room for our large double stroller even with all of the pedestrian traffic passing by.
Alas, while New York was pretty wonderful with the kids – per ‘the new normal’ – I had to minimize my theatregoing activity. We did manage to make it out to one show alone (Far From Heaven at Playwright’s Horizons… not entirely my cup of tea, but lots to admire). But my dreams of introducing the kids to Matilda, Kinky Boots, and Pippin will have to wait for the next round of revivals.
It was a lovely way to spend time with the family after a few absentee weeks during Falsettos, and a great reminder of the magic that is New York City no matter what aged lens you are looking through.