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Blog: Blog2

Day 3: 15,168 Steps, flowers, and JFK

Although I was in a proper (and comfortable) bed that did not require lying flat, I did not sleep well. However, I woke around 6:00 and went down to breakfast, which was typical hotel breakfast. I chose the “cheese omelet” with some fruit, a yogurt, and some turkey sausage. As I do, I took it up to my room. I have my morning routine, the details of which I will spare the public. With a bit of New York’s NBC 7, Today Show, and watching the sunrise outside my window, it was a lovely morning. I decided to go down to the hotel’s fitness center for a brief workout to repent of some of my sins past and future. While on the treadmill, I watched the news report of Russia’s alleged killing of the leader of Isis. (I forgot about this news as the day progressed, so I have no idea what other breaking news happened). I returned to my room, showered, and got ready for the day. The hotel staff was kind enough to hold my bags so that I could check out but also not worry about schlepping my luggage all over Brooklyn. Oy vey!

Shehzad had asked for me to smuggle two different sandwiches from Wendy’s to London, so my adventure was partially determined by my proximity to Wendy’s. I found that there is a location near the Brooklyn Museum and Brooklyn Botanic Garden. I started walking in that direction. This took me by Grand Army Plaza, which is something I had often driven by but never walked through. Speaking of JFK, it was quite nice.

I continued down Flatbush Ave through Prospect Park and eventually saw the sign for the Botanic Garden (no botanical); however, I couldn’t find the entrance. After a bit of googling, I found that the entrance would be very close to Wendy’s. Perfect. The sign at the admissions desk said “walk around for free,” so I asked if I could have a map. I was told that is is only free on Tuesdays or for senior citizens. Of course, I told them that the sign was very confusing, and I read it about 5 times to be sure that I wasn’t crazy. I wasn’t….this time.

I checked the time, and I had just over an hour to make it through the garden. I thought I might be rushed, but I made it through the discover garden, herb garden, the conservatory, the Shakespeare Garden, the amazing rose garden, and back to the exit through which I entered. My favorite parts were the bonsai garden inside the conservatory, the Shakespeare garden, and the rose garden. It was all quite beautiful, peaceful, and possibly magical.

Upon exiting the garden, I went straight to Wendy’s and ordered the necessary sandwiches to transport to the UK. I really hope they are processed enough and/or have enough preservatives that this amount of time unrefrigerated will not cause a health issue!

I made it back to the hotel to retrieve my bags around 11:50, just in time to go to Runner &Stone for lunch down the street. I found them online, and they struck my interest because of a few items on their menu, as well as the fact that it said that their bread is made by natural fermentation. I assume that means that the bread is more of a sour dough that doesn’t use packaged yeast (Fleischmann’s). This is another of my current obsessions, by the way. From the menu, I knew that they had a duck pastrami salad. Again, I know I’m weird, but that is what really struck my fancy. It was simple, beautiful, delicious. It also had rye croutons made from their bread. It was such a lovely, chill place for lunch, and I am glad that I found it.

Might not look like much, but it was delicious.

I then walked up 3rd Avenue to the Atlantic Ave terminal to take the Long Island Railroad to Jamaica station to then catch the AirTrain to JFK. This all took about an hour, and I was in my airport lounge by 2:00. My flight was scheduled for 6:30, but when I have a lounge pass, I prefer to just take advantage and have a leisurely time in the airport. This allowed me time to chat with some people, catch up on this blog, and have some snacks.

I went to the gate for my flight at around 5:30, and boarding began soon after. Although one flies a Virgin Atlantic flight that is booked through Delta, that does not mean that one has the advantages or perks of flying Delta. Normally, I would be in zone 1. Also, normally, I wouldn’t care, but when I am packed for 10-11 days in a carry-on, I want to be sure to get my overhead space. Although the flight was full, it fortunately wasn’t a problem.

We pulled away from the gate basically on time, but we didn’t take off until 7:30, an hour later than scheduled. That’s annoying, but perhaps the time will be made up in flight. The flight attendants gave a great first impression with their first beverage service, and they continued to be very kind during the meal service a bit later.

Not the best airplane meal ever

I am now in the present tense, and it is time to brush my teeth and think about sleeping. Considering that it is 2:53 am in London, it would be nice to get a few hours of sleep before landing in about 4 hours. I have about 50 minutes left in the movie “Fences,” which I hope to finish watching before landing.

Oh, Viola…

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