Sun 12 May - New York City, NY

Sunday and the weather is nice, so we reckon Central Park again. We only covered a small portion of that huge park last Sunday. Today we aim to check out the area around the park and take a lap of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir, known from the movie "Marathon Man" (with Dustin Hoffman running this same route) among others.

So after a long and lazy Sunday breakfast at home, we take the subway and F-train to Lexington and 63rd. A bit of a detour to a Wells Fargo ATM for cash, which is still used often here, we walk out to Central Park's southeast corner and north on 5th Avenue.

As Di said, there go $1,000 worth of haircuts among these 3 young ladies. Not a strand out of place and no split ends. Di has a little "hair envy" moment, which soon passes.

There are plenty of nice buildings with doormen and of course scaffolding (they are always restoring these older buildings). We do note that in this district the scaffolding is neatly painted, and lit underneath and no rust. Hmmm... In Chinatown we don't get quite the same.

We think this is the French consulate. We also saw flags for Ireland and Russia on other old buidings. Nice location...

We pass the Frick Collection Museum on East 70th Street. We need to check this out some other day as it has been given great reviews.

And us in the corner of 5th Avenue and 70th Street looking south. Central Park to the right.

Interesting choice of name for this ice cream vendor...Mister Softee?

We pass Central Park Zoo which had some quite elegant gates into a children's playground.

We pass the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which is undergoing renovations and although the building is huge, we didn't think it looked that impressive for New York.
We head into Central Park just north of 85th Street. And there it was, the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir or Central Park Reservoir as it was known until early 1990s and is still called by many. It is no longer used to store New York City's water supply, but provides water for other parts of the park and beyond.

We stop for a break at the southern pump-house and watch the world go by. There is a succession of joggers and walkers, tourists and others on the 2.54km loop and quite busy, perhaps not surprising given a nice Sunday just before lunch. Here is Hans...

And here is Di.

Well, we had to do the loop and so slowly wander around the reservoir, trying our best to avoid puddles of water and joggers. Signs suggest you should walk in an anti-clockwise direction but lots of people seem to ignore these.
Beautiful views south towards downtown.

A self portrait looking southwest.

Another location shot...

We try to identify the pump house which was used in the "Marathon Man" movie and we think we found it. This certainly looks sinister enough.
This is next to Central Park Tennis Center, which is a huge complex of tennis courts, perhaps 25 or so outdoor courts.

Yep, yet another location shot. We are not sure what the building with the 2 towers contains, but it looks great.

After completing the loop around Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis reservoir, we walk west on 86th Street into Upper West Side and onto Columbus Avenue to find some lunch.

Our ideal location would be with outdoor seating, a nice menu, mid price range and not too yuppie. In fact, the very first restaurant we saw at the corner of Columbus and 86th looked so good and met all these criteria that we did not search further. The place is called Machiavelli's, same as the Australian politician's favorite on Clarence Street in Sydney. Great karma, and we got an outdoor seating right by the open window to the restaurant meaning we have a great view of both the inside and the outside.

Di is checking out the menus...yep 4 of them in total.

Hans found Franziskaner on the drink list... Well, it is not that common in the US so it had to be ordered.

Great ambiance as we had a piano player entertaining us from inside the restaurant while we sat with our pre lunch drinks and watched the world go by.

The food was excellent too. Calzone for Hans and home made ravioli stuffed with eggplant and cheese for Di. Wine, Tiramisu for Di and coffee followed.

All good, an hour and a half later, with $100 for food and alcohol, we decide to work off some of the indulgence by wandering down Columbus Avenue from 86th Street to Columbus Circle on 59th.

Well, it was Sunday and markets were on, in 2 places almost next to each other. The first market had mostly jewelry and useless overpriced craft stuff and reminded us of the Sydney Road market in Manly so we pass that one pretty quickly. The second market was far more interesting with ethnic food stuff, colorful characters and various bric-a-brac. We wander around the public school site for a while to take it all in.

We then continue south, diverting onto Broadway at 65th Street and pass the partly newly redeveloped Lincoln Centre (only completed in 2012). Looked impressive and we need to investigate and come back later. They offer tours which sound like a good idea and we also like the idea of a performance.

Just next to Columbus Circle is Trump International Tower and Hotel.

A self portrait looking north.
Columbus Circle is quite a busy traffic intersection and subway location but surprisingly well behaved (not always the case with NYC traffic we've noticed). Some location shots.

This busker one man band was playing outside the subway station and he was really good.

And down in the subway station 59th Street - Columbus Circle, these guys were playing and singing and they were excellent. Very smooth. We donated $1 to them. New Yorkers do tip buskers if they are good and these guys collected at least $5 in the 5 minutes we waited for our train.

Well, we take the A-train to 4th Street and change to our F-train and are home around 4.30pm. Another interesting day with new discoveries.

With all the lunch and alcohol we feel a bit snoozy, and not in a hurry for dinner. Something simple - nice bread and cheese from yesterday is all we have.


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