After a relaxing morning shower (with no one popping their head and giggling about how mommy looks funny naked - note to self, must get lock for bathroom) and coffee, I met up with Michele and her outrageously fun friend Jen (yes we often called this BEA "The Abundance of Jen's) at their hotel.
Since Jen is a New York expert, we trusted her to pick us the perfect place for breakfast, and she did. We ate at the H.K. (Hell's Kitchen) Cafe where I had a delicious spinach and feta egg white omelet that was to die for. Honestly the thing fueled me for the whole day without making me feel over full. Next time I am in New York I will definitely be checking you out again. Coffee was fabulous too btw!
Then we just spent the day walking around New York (have to say it is one of my favorite cities, so alive and eclectic). Jen, our unofficial tour guide,took us to all of her favorite spots in New York while teaching us how not to look like tourists. It was a fascinating, fun and the type of day I needed. We had no plans and we just soaked in everything New York had to offer. Enjoyed just being with people like me. After the stress of the last year, this was such a simple but wonderful day.
Honestly, cannot remember the order of our day, but here are just a few of the things we did.
Fishs Eddy - One of the most unusual and fun housewares stores I have ever been too. Really wish I hadn't been on a tight budget or I would have totally dropped a fortune there.
Washington Square Park: After walking around on such a hot and humid day, this was the perfect place to stop for a while. Enjoyed watching the young children frolic in the midday sun without a care in the world.
|Michele and Jen|
|Pic curtesy of Michele Li (Me and Jen - two of the Abundance of Jen's)|
Union Square: A truly vibrant area of the city. I had my Tarot cards read by a women that Jen highly recommended. I was impressed with this women's ability to read people (or her gift, still not sure on this one). She told me a bunch of fascinating things that were truly overwhelming. What I remember (hey I am old, remembering things is not my strong point) is that the universe is spinning around me and waiting for me to step up and make things happen. I have a light in me that attracts people ( you hear that Nathan Fillion, come and find me) and that I just need to step up and grab the things I want. She also told me that life gets more interesting and better around September of this year (Hmm coincides with my 4 yr old going to Kindergarten). She also mentioned that I should mature - um not sure that is going to happen and stand up for myself. One of my favorite things she said that there was a man with a secret in my future -- hmmm yup I am also hoping that that has something to do with Nathan Fillion having a secret crush on me -- come on Nathan, I may be a plain looking girl, but I have learned THINGS from books and shh don't tell Jeff ; )
The Strand: The mecca for book lovers in New York. I had heard so many wonderful things about this store, I just had to visit. Honestly, you could spend days in this place. However, we only had a few minutes so we took a quick look around and I also picked up a copy of The Messenger by Lois Lowry, that I had been looking for. I highly recommend taking some time to scope out this massive book store if you are ever in the area.
|Loved this display made out of damaged books|
Once again raced back to the hotel to get prepared for a publisher event. Jenn and I attended the HarperCollins party at the KLounge and what a blast it was.
Ran into Cindy, who is a delightfully sweet and funny blogger from Canada (Yes we Canadians seem to find each other and bond). I was a little nervous when I looked over and saw Wally Lamb. He is one of those writers who intimidate me as I believe they are superior intellectually than myself and don't want to come across as stupid. Of course, Jenn, thought I was being a moron and dragged me over to meet him. He was such a delightfully frank and charming man and he put me at ease right away. I think we spent over an hour talking to him about education (he was a teacher) writing, kids, etc. Also had a chance to chat with Eloise James, Leah Clifford, Rachel Carter and so many more fabulous authors.
|Me and my pal Wally|
|One of my favorite photos - this shows how fabulous and down to earth Wally - and also how hilarious my pal Jenn is|
|Jenn, Adriana Trigiani and Stephanie Evanovich|
Everyone I chatted with raved about the appetizers. I had to keep away from them as I have a sensitive stomach when it comes to certain spices. However, the wine was delish and the service was fabulous. My only complaint that was nobody was introduced - but hey it was a cocktail party so I guess that was the point.
|Photo courtesy of Jenn (wish I had written down the name of the wine)|
|Me and Leah Clifford|
We tweeted one of my favorite bookish men, Cammy, to find out what he was up to. We met up with him at The Ace Hotel where he was attending a private event hosted by Simon and Schuster for Amanda Lindhout. We also ran into the fabulous Felicia from Simon and Schuster (she has a fabulous personality, so fun, honest and passionate about her job - next time I am in T.O. Felicia -- I am taking you out to LUMA for dinner!!). I also had the pleasure of meeting Kevin Hanson, the President of Simon and Schuster Canada. He was a truly charming man and hopefully I convinced him that he needs to send the handsome and talented Brad Smith to Chapters Shawnessy for an author event. Had a few minutes to chat with Amanda Lindhout about her book and about living in Canmore (Near where I live in Calgary). She is a truly beautiful and peaceful individual and I wish I had had a chance to read her book before I met her. Also ticked off that another one of our bookstores in Calgary scooped her up for an event before the store I worked at did. Obi Wan Cammy you must teach me your ways, so that I can make Chapters Shawnessy the MUST stop place for authors.
|Goofing around with Jenn (Pic courtesy of Jenn)|
Cammy had to take off with the Simon and Schuster staff so Jenn and I hung out and chatted while snacking down on the best grilled cheese I have ever eaten -- and trust me I have eaten a lot of grilled cheeses. The Ace has a great vibe and it is the perfect place to people watch. Than it was back to the hotel to once again pass out -- after all tomorrow was the official Day 1 of BEA and I needed to be rested.