We had another fun, productive day on Thursday. We attempted another entrance to the Empire State Building but decided against because of time restraints; Chelby wanted more time spent at the Museum of Natural History (and, truthfully, she’s scared of heights). So, we took a cab to the museum and spent a better part of the day there enjoying the special event Cosmic Collisions in the planetarium, and the rest of the museum. After, we left to walk through Central Park to enjoy the view spying on lazy parkers reading their books and enjoying the sun, and a hot air balloon, with a side trip to Columbus Circle on our way to Serendipity 3.
The visit to Serendipity 3 was the highlight of the entire trip. It was Oz for our merry band of travelers. It was a destination that I never stopped hearing the end of even before we left for New York. I was hearing about Serendipity 3 so much before our trip that I was already growing tired of hearing about it by the time we arrived. If you don’t know what Serendipity 3 is, it’s a restaurant that has been the center of attention for many, many years. They’ve focused on it in movies, like Serendipity, and in television, like Rachel Ray’s cooking shows and Samantha Brown’s travel shows. Serendipity 3 is the home of the famous Frozen Hot Chocolate. After having tasted it, it is easy to see why it is famous. If you are ever in New York, I highly recommend visiting, not for the meal but for the deserts alone. During our 45 minute wait to get in, we decided to have a quick dinner at a oven cooked pizza place across the street. Our original intention was to visit Serendipity 3 just for the deserts so having a meal during the wait was perfect, unplanned, timing.
The only unfortunate event during this time was that it started raining and did not stop for the rest of the night. But, we were able to use this to our advantage by visiting Dylan’s Candy Bar candy store and cafe right next to Serendipity 3. It was a pretty neat candy store filled with all types of candies and chocolates. Thereafter, during a brief pause in the rain, we walked to FAO Schwarz and the Apple Store to wait out the rain, and to waste a little more time, before we retired for the evening.
On Friday, we sort of took our time since we had planned to visit Central Park Zoo and it didn’t open until 10am. We arrived there at a decent time and spent most of the midday enjoying the zoo and Central Park until we had to get to the airport for our flight out at 5pm. The rest of the trip, after this, was a disaster.
We got to the airport on time. The only issue was that the plane was delayed 30 minutes later than the original planned 5:05pm schedule. However, due to the surrounding storms, it was delayed again until close to 6pm. While we were waiting in line to get on the plane I had overheard someone else state that there was even a tornado warning in the Manhattan area. Once we got on the plane, the fun didn’t end. We finally taxied out toward the runway pausing halfway for over an hour to wait in a queue with 40 planes in front of us. At the time, there was an estimate that we would not be taking off for another two to three hours. The only problem for us, along with many others on the plane, was that we had a layover in Chicago’s O’Hare airport for a transfer flight to Orlando at 8:00pm. Needless to say, we did not make that flight. We arrived in Chicago close to 9:30 CST, an hour and a half after our plane left out for Orlando. So, we waited in queue at United customer service for another hour waiting to see when our next flight would be taking off. Unfortunately, it wasn’t until 12:55 the next day.
So, United gave us a discounted hotel voucher and put us on the wait list for any planes Saturday morning from 6:50am until time of our scheduled flight out at 1pm. Luckily, we found a really nice Hyatt ten minutes from the airport for less than $75 and stayed the night there. I am typing this from the United gate now having missed out on the first flight out at 6:50am. We are now waiting for the next standby at 10:45am but I doubt we will be on that plane also. More than likely, we will be flying out at 1:00pm.
Update: I am typing this now after having finally arrived home in the early evening. It happened as predicted; we didn’t fly out until 1:00pm.
The trip was pretty decent up until that storm hit NY on Friday. I would be so happy to be home now, if I wasn’t so exhausted.