It’s hot. 92 degrees hot. And we walked all day. No subways. We walked the scenic high line along 10th Avenue and reached the Meatpacking District in time for lunch. There was a light breeze around that kept us from melting. Fashion around New York is incredible in itself but as we sat and ate, every second person that passed us looked as if they’d walked straight out of magazine. New Yorkers are not only fashionable but they carry it with style. You can still wear the most expensive couture item and look like you’re wearing a paper bag, but New Yorkers can put on that paper bag and make it look like runway. They ooze confidence and aren’t afraid to be themselves, not tied down to the latest trend but creating them. Bright fluro colours, boots, red jeans, edgy sunglasses and mixed prints are among the styles walking around Manhattan this summer.
We walked off lunch and sweated out every ounce of water we drank. As we made our way toward the river, hopeful to find a cool refreshing breeze, we ran right into her. Breezy and her twin sister Coco were chaining up their bikes as we rounded the corner. Before I knew it, I was in front of them asking if I could take their picture. Not only are they identical twins but also sport matching tattoos, wicked hair styles and matching shades. I learn they are accessory designers from Minnesota, making their mark on the fashion industry with celebrities like Kelly Osbourne and Nicki Minaj wearing their shades. You can check out their online store here. They were so approachable and friendly as have been most of the people I’ve met in the concrete jungle.
Later in the evening we caught the number 2 train to Harlem. As we made our way down 125th Street, it started to hit me. I was just about to see The Jackson perform live at the Apollo. The excitement was palpable as we entered the theatre. Along the walls were pictures of other stars that caught a break at The Apollo. James Brown, Ella Fitzgerald and Gladys Knight all had some wall space. I touched the lucky log that everyone (including MJ 40 years ago) rubs for luck before hitting the stage for amateur night. We were sitting just 5 rows from the stage and The Apollo is not a large theatre…if I spat, I reckon it would have reached it. We were so close, even The Jacksons’ agent was sitting behind us (I don’t endorse eavesdropping but it did come in handy in this instance).
Then the curtains raised, the beat started, the smoked cleared and there stood Tito, Jackie, Marlon and Jermaine. Instantly the crowd jumped to their feet and went crazy. They opened with Can You Feel It and even the high class ladies with large jewels adorning their necks started clapping and singing along madly. The Jacksons did not disappoint. The played the classics and some of my favourites, like Lovely One, Heartbreak Hotel and Looking Through The Window. They danced and sang only a couple of meters away from me. I couldn’t believe we scored these seats….and yesterday for that matter.
After the concert, the MJ stalls that popped up outside the theatre the day after his death and still remain were pushing their merchandise a little bit harder. Hopeful they could capatalise on the emotions of the concert goers. Well, it worked. Among other items, I bought a J5 tote bag for $12 that I could have made myself. But hey, I was supporting local industry.
My oh my what an awesome day.
(Again, I haven’t proof read…I stand by my grammatical and spelling mistakes.)