Jack and I were married by one of our best friends, Jez. We chose him as our celebrant for a number of reasons but the main one being that, as a couple, he really knows us best.
Jez was there on the Monday night in Brooklyn when Jack and I met in 2011.
Two days later, he came on our first date.
He welcomed me with open arms when I moved to Australia.
And he acted as a witness to prove to immigration that our relationship was indeed real.
He shared an apartment with us in London during the Olympics.
And I loved being their third wheel.
He helped Jack cross “Do a Comedy Show” off his bucket list.
And he always lets me vent about my own hopes and dreams.
Jez is an incredibly creative, thoughtful and inspiring human whose positive spirit is contagious and admirable. I’m so lucky that he’s my best friend’s best friend.
While Jack and I went on our 5 month honeymoon, Jez went on his own 5 month trip. Our adventures only overlapped once. In New York City. There, he gave us our wedding present: a recreation of our first date – just the three of us.
I don’t want to say that this is the world’s best New York City date or anything. But, I mean, look at what’s followed.
In 2011 we went to McCarren Park to watch Wayne’s World as part of SummerScreen.
In 2015 we went to McCareen Park and reminisced about the good times until we got too cold
In 2011 we went straight to eat.
In 2015 we bowled at The Gutter and ate at Tacombi.
In 2011 we played ping pong at SPiN.
in 2015 I beat everyone in ping pong at SPiN.
In 2011 the night ended too quickly and I just hoped they both had as much fun as I did.
In 2015 the night didn’t end. We walked uptown together and talked about how fast time goes by.
If walking the Brooklyn Bridge seems touristy, let me assure you that it is, but it’s something you should do whether you live in New York City or are visiting. Biking the Brooklyn Bridge, on the other hand, is something you should do at your own risk. We tried it; all four of us have completely different levels fitness – It was funny, bit of a mess and a lot of danger.
You see, there are only two types of people on this famous bridge. People on a leisure walk with a camera attached to their hand and people on bikes with somewhere to be and a serious addiction to beeping their horns. We fell somewhere in between.
Here’s my photo journal from our time on the bridge.
The Shop is a fancy sit down restaurant housed on the bottom floor of the ANdAZ 5th Avenue Hotel. It’s where uptowners and business people meet for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner. I’ve never eaten there. I don’t fit in.
But! This place has two eating sections to accommodate us all: The Shop and The Shop Retail.
The Shop Retail is just what the doctor ordered. It’s the small section at the front of the restaurant which offers an even smaller selection of breakfast goods, coffee and juice on the go. The menu will be outlined on a blackboard underneath the counter where you order and pay, in your own time. You can then pick a seat amongst the coffee table books and the other New York centric gifts for sale or you can take-away your food.
I recommend eating in so you can enjoy your coffee, beans by Cafe Grumpy, in The Shop’s exquisite ceramic mugs. Also the breakfast sandwich is easier to consume with two hands, as the bun is oversized and must be kept under control.
Plus, the New York Public Library, which sits directly across The Shop, doesn’t allow food or drinks inside – Oh, my bad. I just assumed you were headed to the library’s photography exhibition Public Eye: 175 years of sharing photography, but the games section at Bryant Park is also a brilliant choice!
The Shop Retail
485 5th Avenue at 41st Street, New York, New York, USA, 10017
Opens at 6:30am
When I told Tiff, my roomate in NYC, I was going to Jack’s Wife Freda for breakfast she was like, “Oh. Good luck fitting in. Only bloggers go there.”
I thought oh, how perfect! I blog!
She must have read my mind because then she added, “You know those really pretty, well-put-together fashion bloggers who force you to reassess your life every time they put a picture on instagram. Those type of bloggers.” Luckily, we were already on our way so changing our minds was not an option.
After spending the morning at the popular cafe, I understand why super cool fashion bloggers would choose to hang out there. It’s homely and comfortable, quiet enough and cute as can be. It’s also inspiring in every way: the decor, the atmosphere, the location. Even the sugar packets are cause for some photography action. And don’t even get me started on those perfectly designed menus or their heart-warming illustrations or their “We’re the perfect match” matchbook. [Insert 10 heart emoticons and an exclamation mark here.]
Luckily, the food at Jack’s Wife Freda is just as inspired as its design. I tried the two poached eggs with grilled tomato and haloumi; a risk that paid off. My sister had the Madame Freda in all its cheesy glory and my mom ordered the incredibly photogenic yet still tasty Rosewater French toast.
As it turns out, Jack’s Wife Freda is not too cool for school, it’s just the perfect amount of cool – just like their Instagram.
Jack’s Wife Freda
50 Carmine Street NY, NY 10014
Reservations available for parties of 6+