Sushi. It's one of those things that has to be done right. Fresh. Cut well. Expertly presented. I was hoping the sushi restaurant we chose would have all of those components and I was not disappointed. The Omakase that we dined on was fabulous. Each new course that arrived was beautiful and tasted divine. The black cod, the Spanish mackerel, all melted in my mouth. It was my first omakase experience and certainly lived up to the hype. A little dry hot sake made the meal even better. I was worried at one point that I may still be hungry when we were done eating, but when the last piece of sushi was almost a struggle to eat, I knew it was just the right amount.
The dinner was not only gastronomically satisfying, it was also enlightening. I realized that no matter how well manicured people's lives appear on the outside, we all struggle with emotional issues on the inside. This was both a blessing and a complete bummer to discover. On the one hand, it reassured me that I am not the only person around that deals with struggles. I am not a freak! On the other hand, it is saddening to know that others hurt. But I suppose that's just how life is - it's messy.
After licking our chops post dinner we headed out back on to the streets of Manhattan. It's amazing to me how alive the city is. It's electrifying. Everywhere we went, there were people. Everywhere. Times Square was the most fascinating eye candy. It's just a giant ocean of people. Moving in every direction. There was even a bleacher-like sitting area which was completely covered in people. Is that like an observation deck? The lights, the sounds, the colors. I was mesmerized. I remember being in Times Square my Sophomore or Junior year of high school, circa 1989 perhaps, and thinking it was a cesspool. It was darker, danker, and somewhat seedier. And now, it was like a glossy spread out of a magazine or a clip from some movie. Times change.
Eventually we made it back to our hotel for some cocktails in the lounge. This was the same lounge that I walked past as I checked in to my hotel at 7am and yet it seemed so much more inviting. The glowing fireplace encased in glass, the brown leather seating areas situated perfectly for intimate gatherings. It seemed to make so much more sense at 10pm than it did at 7am. Fireplaces glowing at 7am seemed a bit surreal. I opted to stay downstairs rather than going upstairs to change. I feared that the moment I would have stepped in to my room, I would have collapsed on the bed for some much needed sleep. Instead, I ordered a Caipirinha and made myself comfy on the couch. More talking ensued. An hour (or more?) passed and we were finally back in our rooms for some way overdue sleep. The bed was deliciously comfortable. I could have slept forever! And yet, at 8:15 the alarm made its presence known and it was time to start day 2.
(to be continued)
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