With each new milestone, I feel an urgency to capture every moment of joy available and fully embrace the opportunity to celebrate life. My husband’s recent birthday was another excuse to do just that.

And for us, there is no better way to experience blissful joy then amidst the cultural magic of the Big Apple.

New York City -spontaneous, uncontrolled, rich in possibilities, and most definitely

our happy place. Full of friends, fantastic food, and a smorgasbord of endless options for entertainment we slip back into our former city selves quickly after touchdown at JFK.

We are exhilarated by the heartbeat of humanity that surrounds us and captivated and uplifted by a city that is still capable of surprising us with its richness.

Room with a view

We chose to treat ourselves to the luxury of the midtown  Thompson Central Park hotel, partly for its convenient location but mostly to ensure an easier and more comfortable stay. We love the view of Central Park from our room and the clubby lounge, offered as an extra perk for the upper story rooms, was the perfect place to have that early morning coffee or happy hour drink while listening to live jazz before heading out on the town.

The hotel spoiled us with a special birthday greeting for the hubby on check-in too!

While we enthusiastically visited 6 museums in 9 days (MET, MOMA, Guggenheim, Whitney, Ruben & ICP), we also honored our need to sit a bit longer at the museum cafes for lunch and tea or hop in a taxi rather than walk the entire city from Battery Park to the Upper East Side.

Catching an exciting Rangers hockey game, a Broadway musical revival, and an evening of great jazz (Dizzy’s Club, Jazz at Lincoln Center our favorite) made every day a winner.

We willingly relaxed for an hour or two in the late afternoon so we could enjoy the theater or late dinners and drinks with friends. Our way of accepting our physical aging as our NYC souls were still running 24/7.

Honoring our instincts to have early morning visits at our hotel or close by allowed us to keep our energy for an afternoon stroll down 5th avenue or through the park. We chose to view new or special exhibits rather than racing through all the galleries. Most of the permanent art collections we have seen scores of times before.

Rather than trying to live our lives under some tyranny of perfection, trying to craft the ideal trip from our former days, we instead, chose to create an amazing vacation in the here and now.

Modifying our expectations and gratefully embracing our favorite city and all its offerings at this age was the biggest gift we gave one another.

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