Frank Ocean did not want to ride in my rented Ford Fusion; that much was clear. After I parked the car, he met me outside his modernist apartment building in Los Angeles and led me to the garage where he rents three parking spots for three different BMWs. He was dressed casually — gray hoodie, jeans, high-top Vans with red laces, baseball cap — and he jumped lightly from the curb to the parking blocks as we walked toward his late-model blue BMW M3. Ocean no longer had driving privileges as a result of some recent violations, on top of which he was cited for marijuana possession a few weeks earlier. “You can drive,” he said, though I could tell that it was killing him.
Chance the Rapper in NYC. Baaaaalin.
New York was such an amazing place. The people, the foods, the trends. Everything.
I arrived in New York dopey as hell. I barely slept on the plane ride form Las Vegas and I had a big night the night before. Screaming babies on the plane – NOT GOOD! By this stage, I did the math and I had slept only ten hours over five days. I was not in the best state.
As we drove through Harlem, I was so anxious to take photos. Jane and I arrived to her lovely little apartment and settled in. I stayed with Jane my whole time in New York - so grateful to have somewhere to stay rather than paying for expensive hotels!
We headed out to Target on my first day. It’s not like Australian Target – it’s actually cool! I bought Twinkies and other delicious American treats which I had been dying to try! We walked through Spanish Harlem, where I ate the most delicious chicken sandwich.
The same day I headed to Grand Central Station. Real nice! Then to the Top of the Rockefeller Centre – this was one of the most beautiful spots I found. It was stunning! The views were simply phenomenal.
I needed sleep that night. I was exhausted. So much so that every time I sat on public transport I’d fall into micro sleeps. Once I even fell asleep while text messaging and dropped my phone. Haha!
The next day I woke up early and went to the best bagel shop in NYC for breakfast – Ess-a-bagel. It was the best bagel I ate on my whole trip. I was lucky that the guy making my bagel, Gavin, took to me, cutting my bagel in four and slapping on four different cream cheeses. DELICIOUS!
I then headed to Bloomingdales for a bit of a shop, walked the amazing city and rode a bike through Central Park. That night I visited the top of the Empire State Building. Another amazing spot. The only down-side is the queue and the crammed space. It’s really not as romantic as you think it is. That night I also saw Times Square for the first time – and WOW! It was huge and bright and stunning!
That night I visited Jane at work at the Irish Pub down the street from her house. Cute place! There was karaoke and a great guy who solos the MIB theme! Hilarious!
The next day I saw Soho and Noho, or NYU as it’s more commonly known. I visited some funky ass sneaker stores including Flight Club and walked through some amazing places. I really loved Soho. I also ate the most delicious street food – a falafel wrap. YUM!
That night was real special. I saw Frank Ocean LIVE! He brought along his whole crew for an absolutely unforgettable concert. Frankies falsetto is to die for. He is such a talent. Ah!
That night Jane and I headed to WIP – the club which Drake and Chris Brown had their brawl. HAA! It was great. The music wasn’t all that but it was definitely worth the trip.
The next day Jane, Sam and I headed out to spend the day shopping and chilling. We stopped by the Seinfeld diner. I loved that. I checked out a little more of Soho and more sneaker shops and cool outlets - like Supreme and Bad Religion. I also made a friend who took me to the most amazing smoothie shop. I had a peanut butter smoothie and it was the most glorious thing I’ve tasted!
That night Christina (a Uni friend from Australia who just happened to be in the USA at the same time as me) and I headed to Pasha – a well known NYC nightclub. It was great! Boys were a bit handsy and wore sunglasses INSIDE the club, but besides that it was such great fun! The drinks were super expensive but I loved the RNB room!
The next day was my final day in New York. We headed to Brooklyn. I fell in love with Brooklyn. It’s so beautiful – the people are so cool. We checked out some little markets that were set up - real cute! If I move to New York, I will live in Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Bridge, the little markets. AH, I miss it! We also had Jane’s farewell drinks that day, where we gathered with some of Jane’s closest friends. It was really nice that they all came together to have a little send off.
That evening we headed to Marquee. It was awesome! Bottle service, great music! I loved it! This was the third Marquee that I’ve been to. Marquee is a great club because they always had an RNB/hip hop room for me to jam!
Order of the best Marquees across Australia and the USA:
1. Las Vegas
2. New York
I stayed up and pulled an all nighter that night because I had to hit up the train station by 5am for my 7am train. Damn. On my way to Boston!