How we spent our 7 waking hours in NYC

Alright, so I basked in the glow of the mountains of North Carolina + I sank down into my roots while relaxing at the coast of North Carolina. And that means that, sadly, my time in my home state was done. But, no worries. Lina + I maxed out our vacation as much as possible. So, on the way home to Sweden, we’re stopped over in NYC to squeeze in just a little time in the funky, wild city that we love.

Of course, our expected almost 24 hours in New York did not turn out at all like we planned. Which is extreeeemely typical of us. Travel anywhere, at any time, with us and you will be guaranteed an adventure that you’ll never forget. Throw in a Mercury Retrograde and things will be all fucked up. But, there will always be amazing stories to tell.

Like this one…

Our plane was scheduled for 5pm on Thursday. We were flying direct from Asheville to NYC. We’d be there about 6:30, grab a Lyft to the city, and check into our Chelsea hotel by about 7:30. And then… dinner out! Followed by a whole bunch of wandering + exploring the neighborhood. Crash + sleep late. Wake early + soak up those NYC vibes all the way until we need to catch a Lyft back to the airport about 2pm on Friday for our 5:30 flight to Stockholm.

But, as you can imagine, none of that happened. Ok. Some of it happened. But, not at all like we had planned.

It began in Asheville at the airport. As soon as we walked in + checked in, we saw that the flight was immediately delayed until 6:45. Ugh. That was seriously cutting into our time in NYC. But, nevermind that. We decided to roll with it, knowing that we’d get there when we’d get there, and make the most of the time we had.

That means that, after hanging out with my parents prolonging our goodbyes a little bit more, we headed straight for the bar. One last chance to get some local craft beer! That beer turned into two beers each + then dinner. Why? Because our 6:45 flight was now delayed until 8pm. Definitely getting us to the city way later than planned.

But, whatever. we kept rolling with it. And, sometime after 8, our wheels were up + we were on our way. I ugly cried + had a little emotional meltdown for the first 30 minutes of the flight, and before we knew it, we were landing and it was only 10:15 pm! Haha.  Of course, there were major storms in the area, so they couldn’t get our luggage off the plane, so we joined about 5 other flights of passengers waiting for our bags to come. And, then finally, at 11:00 pm we were in our Lyft on the way to our hotel!

I found this cute little Chelsea brownstone that had been renovated into a kind of hostel-like boutique hotel and we checked in with no problem. We then lugged our super heavy luggage up 5 flights of stairs + crashed immediately. It was too late. We were too tired. We couldn’t do it. So, we made a pact to sleep + wake up at 6 am.

Morning came, we got dressed super fast, and checked out (the hotel kindly stored our bags for us). All that took only 1 hour, so we now had a glorious 6 hours before we had to order a Lyft to the airport!

So, here’s how we spent it:

→ Breakfast at The Butcher’s Daughter in West Village: a super hip + super duper tasty all vegetarian restaurant

→ A walk to Washington Square Park to people watch: an iconic NYC place that we’ve visited many times before

→ A coffee stop + more wandering the streets of Greenwich Village: with tons of photo moments

→ A spontaneous stop at a salon for manicures: what?! i know, crazy, right? it turned out to be such a great thing + we met some very wonderful women who worked there

→ More walking + wandering + ducking into stores: ’cause it was hot as hell

→ Lunch at a cute bar near the corner of 5th Ave + W 17th Street: delicious, cozy, fun, and the best way to top off our NYC “visit”

So, a funny thing happened. Of course our crazy adventures did not end after our time at the airport. No, no, no. We got our Lyft car and headed to the airport. Should’ve taken about 30-45 minutes. We planned for plenty of time. But, there was INSANE NYC traffic (the Lyft driver even admitted that!) and we arrived after the time we needed to check in.

But, no worries. We checked in, got our boarding passes, whizzed through security, and headed to the gate, only to find out that, YES, our flight was delayed an hour. But, only an hour. And we only had this flight, so we didn’t really care.

Turns out, we boarded only a little bit later than our intended delayed time. But, wait. There’s more. We sat at the gate forever. Mechanical issues. Storms in the area. And, then finally, about two hours later, we headed out from the gate + onto the waiting line on the runway. But, there’s even MORE. Hehe. While waiting in line for our turn to take off, the pilots discovered that one of the fuel pumps wasn’t working. WHAT?!

Well, we didn’t return to the gate, but moved into some no man’s land on the runway area + some mechanics came out to fix it. And then, after that, we finally took off. Headed to Sweden. Only 3 hours late!

The flight was flawless. Easy. And seemed fast. And, upon landing on Swedish ground, I couldn’t have cared less about all of the stuff that went down.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my life, it is to literally just roll with the punches. Things will turn out ok. It will never ever be as planned, but there will be adventures, stories, challenges, and tons of moments that will make us better people. Well, that’s my little advice from my little travel adventures.

Oh, and, NYC, thank you, once again, for all of the wild, funky inspiration.

xoxo. liz.



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