A Fat Purple Fig

Month: December, 2017

Finita la Musica

The music is over. The party is finished.



The History of Harlem


For our last day, New York decided to school us in cold. I had spent all week feeling over-confident about the weather (“it’s snowing, but I don’t find it too bad!), so I guess it was time to learn. The light jumper and scarf that had done the trick until now, was rendered entirely useless, as Eva and I scuttled down into subway for some warmth.

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Things I Have Noticed: New York


Jaywalking is the norm. If you see a gap in the traffic, however small, it is customary to rush across the road, inspiring others to rush with you, ignoring the red hand indicating that you should be staying put.

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Pastrami on Rye


Being the second-to-last day in New York, and of our entire holiday, I wanted to do as much as possible (did my legs have a limit?). I splashed out on tickets to Dear Evan Hanson at the Music Box Theatre in the evening, and decided the day should be spent exploring.

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The VERY Big Day


On Monday, we made an early start for the consulate, so we could be the first ones there at opening. Eva and I weren’t pushy enough to get on the subway (you literally need to push your body back on people in order to fit), so we soon gave up and walked. It later turned out that someone had unsuccessfully tried to set a bomb off in there a couple of hours earlier, so I’m not sure the crowds were typical.

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Broadway Bound


I am not known for my love of musicals. I have enjoyed some of the classics immensely – Phantom of the Opera with my mum was amazing, for example – but others truly are a mystery. I have no idea how the hell Cats lasted longer than a week (it’s all about Memory, I suppose), and why, oh why, couldn’t everyone see that Mamma Mia was just ABBA songs, strung together by a plot so thin, it was pretty much transparent?

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The Passport Issue


Friday was dampened by THE PASSPORT ISSUE, which had cast a pall over things.

Long story short(er)…before boarding the plane to New York in New Orleans, we discovered that Eva’s passport wasn’t in the ‘special black bag of very important papers’, despite me returning it to there every (other) time. She still managed to board, after an ID check and a pat down from airport security, while I crossed my fingers that it was in our checked luggage.

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Big Apple Greetings


First things first: I love New York!

Why, I’m not entirely sure. There is a familiarity about it, which I suspect is made up of the oft-viewed icons of popular culture (taxis, fire escapes, food carts, manholes), combined with the elements that make up many large, tightly-packed cities (underground trains, traffic coordination, footpath (sidewalk!) etiquette).

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For the Love of History


After the overwhelming success of my tours in Mexico, I had high hopes for the French Quarter and Cemetery Tour I had booked for Tuesday morning in New Orleans. Part of me hates walking the idea of walking around in a tour group, but it is undoubtedly also the easiest way to learn about the city in a short space of time. In addition, it is prohibited to enter the high-walled St. Louis Cemetery without a tour guide, which made me want to go in there all the more.

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Things I Have Noticed: New Orleans


New Orleans has a lot of freight trains running through it…sometimes you get stuck in the car waiting for them for ages. The noises from them can be incessant after dark. At first, I thought they were foghorns from the water, but it’s definitely the freight trains.

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