Thursday, July 7, 2011

4th of July Weekend

We're back from vacation and back from a fantastic weekend! We flew in on Friday afternoon and landed around 3:30. Word of advice - NEVER fly Spirit airlines!! I know they've been around awhile and advertise cheap flights, but they suck! The reason they can sell cheap flights is because they charge you for EVERYTHING. They charge $35 for a carry-on bag. People use carry-ons to avoid being charged to check luggage. They also charge you for soda and water. Seriously? Come on, Spirit. The flight attendant came up and down the aisle at least 20 times to collect trash, which was super annoying. What trash? You don't give us drinks or even a measly bag of peanuts so what the hell do we have to throw away? Not to mention our pilot must have been either new and nervous or just an absolute idiot because we all wanted to throw up during the landing. The plane was rocking back and forth so badly. I really think Mike was afraid I was going to throw up all over the seat in front of me, but I took some deep breaths and made it. I should have, though. Screw you, Spirit - this is how I feel about your airline. Barf! So there.

OK, back to the trip now that I've gotten that out of my system. We all headed back to Ryan's parents house at Seaside Park. The house was huge and gorgeous! It was right on the beach too. The sun was still out so we put our bathing suits on and walked down to the beach. The guys played football (and some random game they made up) so us girls took a walk down the beach. We must have been gone awhile because the boys thought we got lost! That night, we enjoyed an amazing dinner and hung out at the house.

Saturday morning, Mike and I took the bus into NYC! It's obvious that this was something I was so excited about doing. I really miss that city and despite some of the negative things (like walking the streets when it's rainy, dealing with the post-Christmas cold weather and the rent), I really do miss living there. There's so much to do and always something going on and I love the city life. As you saw in my last post, we tried to hit all our favorite spots. It was great! It was so hard to leave. I'm already longing to go back for another trip! I'd really like to go up in the late fall/early winter. That's the best time to be in the city! We came back Saturday night and joined everyone to walk around the Seaside Heights boardwalk. What an amazing people watching place... I could have sat there for hours and just stared at people.

My beloved Central Park. I could just sit here ALL day!
Sunday was overcast, unfortunately. However, we didn't let that stop us! We hung out at the house, played games and then us girls rode bikes over to the boardwalk once the sun started to peek through. We were there for about an hour, though, before the rain showed back up. Fortunately, the house was only a mile away and we were on bikes. Since were were all leaving the next day, Ryan's parents grilled up hot dogs and hamburgers so we could celebrate July 4th the day before. Everything was great and we were stuffed by the end of the night!
Enjoying some delicious peel-and-eat shrimp out on the patio.

On Monday, we woke up early to head into Philadelphia, where we were flying out of. Geoff and April had to leave early Monday morning, so we dropped them off at the airport and the rest of us went into Philly. Mike and I had never been there before, so it was fun! Especially being there on July 4th! What a perfect day to experience that city. The weather was great and since there was a parade going on, we took advantage and went to see the Declaration House, Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell before there were lines. Everything was so historic and so interesting. Of course, for lunch we HAD to have a traditional Philly cheesesteak! The "real" way to eat them is with "whiz" and nothing else. I got mine that way and Mike got his with provolone (the whiz was better though :) ). We walked around the city a little more, went to the Betsy Ross house, visited an old cemetery that dates back to the 1700's, stopped for some amazing ice cream sundaes and then it was time to head to the airport. We stopped at the Philadelphia Art Museum to check out the steps that Rocky ran up and down, but it was blocked off due to some July 4th concert going on. Still got some pics, though.

Our flight back was on Southwest and was 100% better than the flight up! Plus, there were only 54 people on the flight so we had tons of space to stretch out. Score! It was a fabulous weekend and we're very grateful to Ryan and his family for inviting us up there. Here are a few more pics of our weekend:

My office building where I worked for

The corner where we met in May 2007! 5th and 55th.

My apartment building on the corner of 23rd and Lexington.

Meeting up with some great friends in the city!

The house where they film "Jersey Shore" on MTV. Not too fancy...

Mike meeting a patriotic friend in Philly.

Where the first Supreme Court met in 1791.

The Declaration House, where the Declaration of Independence was signed!

That's the actual chair George Washington sat in!
In front of the Liberty Bell.

The Liberty Bell - I thought it would have been bigger than it was!

Yum!! On the left is provolone, right is whiz.

See any ghosts?

Betsy Ross house. Couldn't take any pics inside, but it was cool!

Yum - chocolate mint sundae!

The famous steps that Rocky ran up and down.

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