Day Two: (Click on the photos to enlarge)
My mother was determined to be on the Today Show early Wednesday morning. After staying up late on Tuesday, I was not so sure that I wanted to get up at the crack of dawn and stand in the cold to be on TV. The other ladies did not want to bother with the Today. Jean and I both gave Mom every opportunity to back out, but her mind was set. We got up at 5:30, dressed, and headed to Rockefeller Plaza. We walked about two blocks to Broadway where I hailed a taxi - that was a treat itself. The taxi dropped us off, and we were some of the first people lined up (cause only crazy people stand in the cold at 6:30 in the morning). We visited with all of the people around us and had a great time. I had made signs for Mom and Jean to hold. One said “Wichita Falls, Texas” and the other said, “Hotter ‘n Hell” which is the big bicycle race in August that WF is famous for. Well, it caught Al Roker’s attention. He opened the 7:30 segment by saying something like “These ladies from Wichita Falls have their own weather forecast…” He asked Mom and Jean their names, and they were on the Today Show. I was standing as close as I could to them and stuck my head in the picture and saw myself on the monitor. We were so excited! Who would have thunk that we could actually get on TV? We immediately left the line-up and went for coffee next door. I called my brother and my son and Jesse. Since the show airs an hour later, they were able to tape the segment. Apparently, I did not make the final cut and no one saw me, but Mom and Jean are celebrities. The WF’s NBC station picked up the segment and ran it several times that day. It may have been the highlight of the trip.
Back at the Wolcott, we met up with the rest of the herd and took off for shopping and site-seeing. We shopped at FAO Schwartz to shop, we used the restroom at the Hyatt Regency, and we had lunch at the Trump Building. We saw a light show at Grand Central Station. We walked by Central Park. We went inside Tiffiny’s just to say we did. Most of the time the weather was cold, but okay. It did snow on us occasionally.
After lunch we went to China Town where we bought cheap souviners. And yes, we did buy knock-off purses out of the back of some hidden room. Here is how it went down. Susan approached a man on the street (Jamacian) and talked to him for a minute while we shopped. He eventually took us to a store and through a back panel in the wall to a room lined with purses. He told us that since we were a group of old ladies, he knew we were not undercover policewomen and he said that there were police out everywhere - which made for a good story whether it was true or not.
It was getting dark by the time we took the subway home and made our way back to the Wolcott. Susan and I left the older ladies to rest and eat at a near by Irish pub while Susan took me to Little Italy. We walked and saw some interesting sites without worrying about the herd. We were standing on a street corner waiting to cross, when a yellow school bus full of rabbis pulled up and two rabbis got on. Susan laughed when I said, “That ‘s not something you see in Duncan, OK, everyday.” We ate at a great restaurant which Susan said is quite famous, but I forgot the name. We drank a bottle of wine and had a wonderful meal. Susan and I got to know each other after 30 years of not seeing each other. The young waiter flirted with us. We made friends with the table next to us who were some older Italian/New Yorkers with great accents and very friendly (uncles to the restaurant manager). It was just a perfect setting and perfect NY experience and wonderful way to end my trip. When we got back to the hotel, Susan’s mother had been worried because we stayed out late (about 9:30). I told Susan, “Well, I guess this means I cannot babysit you anymore.”
The next morning we walked to Penn Station pulling our luggage and caught the train back to Penn Station. Then we caught a shuttle to the airport and our plane home. It was a smooth trip home.