Staycation of the Year

August 29, 2018

Unlike a lot of working people I take vacation as often as I can. I have a coworker who has to get reminded to take time off otherwise she stops accruing. I truly don't understand this. 

At the beginning of the month I realized that I hadn't taken any real time off. sure I took off for a concert, or when my niece was here, but nothing longer than 2-3 days at a time. Enter staycation. Originally the plan was to take off 3 days but as the time neared, I knew I wanted the week. Call it mental health. It was a fabulous week.


Monday we went to Defiant Brewing in Pearl River, NY. I've been a couple times before but never on a weekday afternoon. It was pretty ideal. After we met some friends for drinks and apps and then headed to real dinner and bed. 


Tuesday was spent in Brooklyn. We always have a good time here and this was no exception. We went to DeKalb Market Hall {a fave} for lunch and then made our way to the New York City Transit Museum. Neither of us had ever been so this was pretty exciting.

The museum is actually in an old, but still functioning, subway station. The first level is all educational discussing the history of the transit system from the carriages to the trolleys to the MTA buses and subways. My grandfather used to drive for the MTA {trolley and bus} so this was pretty cool to me. 

After the museum we were a decent walk to the Brooklyn Bridge. What better way back to Manhattan?!  So we walked. I've been on the bridge before but never all the way across so it a check on my mental bucket list. Of course as we were crossing menacing clouds started to roll in. I was thinking we'd have time to get over but the storm came hot and heavy and we got absolutely soaked. 

On the way home we were walking down some street and I happened to look up and saw that we were in front of The Mysterious Bookshop. It was absolute fate and I had to go in. A few weeks prior, he sent me an IG post about the shop, which I liked, and then put out of my mind. And here it was. 

The shop, which was originally in midtown and opened in 1979, is the oldest mystery specialist store in the US. 

Photo from website
I was so impressed and overwhelmed. Floor to ceiling bookshelves filled with nothing but mystery books. One entire wall was nothing but Arthur Conan Doyle books. They even have seven different subscription book clubs, all tailored around crime, mystery, suspense, espionage, etc. 

We went home to make gourmet grilled cheese with Muenster, Gouda, Gruyere, cheddar, and provolone.  Talk about comfort food. 


This was a rest day since we had been together since the previous Thursday. I caught up on laundry, did a double training session, and annoyed the cats.


It was sooo hot. We headed out to Queens and walked through Gantry State Park. It's right along the river so the NYC skyline views are perfect.

We found ourselves in Flushing in search of buns and dumplings. I'm happy to say that both were excellent. We stopped at Corner 28 for Peking duck bao and it was beyond perfect. The inside of this place left much to be desired, but the food was awesome.

Then we headed up the street and stopped at Dumpling Galaxy. Their menu is pretty extensive so we kept is simple with pork soup dumplings, pork with bok choy, lamb with cilantro, and shrimp and green squash dumplings. They were all soo good and I was surprised that it all came to $30. Total win. 

After eating we quickly debated heading over to the botanical gardens and Corona Park but it was unbearably hot so, true to form, we found ourselves at Citi Field in Mikkeller Brewing NYC. 

They have 60 beers on tap and don't do flights. I can't lie - the beer list was intimidating. There was just so much to choose from. I immediately went sour and absolutely loved both my choices. The first was a raspberry Berliner Weisse that was probably one of the best I've ever had, and the second was a dark sour aged on Chambourcin grapes. It tasted like a tart, full-bodied red wine and it was heavenly.

One brewery is obviously not enough so we then stopped at Big aLICe Brewing. This brewery is a farm brewery. 

As a licensed New York State farm brewery, our beers support local and state agriculture. We partner with state hop farmers and maltsters to source ingredients, and collaborate with local Queens businesses for specialty ingredients such as cold brew coffee, donuts, honey, and beyond. 
I thought this was pretty cool. One of the co-owners was there so we also got a chance to chat with him, which is always nice. 


This was another true relaxation day. We got coffee, lazed about, and had gourmet mac n' cheese for lunch before he headed home.  

The rest of the weekend was quiet but busy. I had appointments and errands on Saturday and then I drove into the city to pick up my brother, who's visiting for the month. 

Needless to say, it was a week filled with good food and drink, and even better company!

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