Ever had one of those days where absolutely N O T H I N G went right?
A few nights ago when I got in, my sister told me we didn’t have hot water. I was preoccupied on the phone, I didn’t bother to ask for details. I got out of bed late the next morning, courtesy of my dysfunctional relationship with my comfy bed. I wasn’t sleeping, I just tossed and turned, fondling my pillow, and hit the snooze button way too many times.
I had exactly 23 minutes to leave if I was going to make it to work on time. I headed to the bathroom, brushed my teeth and began to prep for my shower. I hopped in the shower, “AHHHHHHHH”, I shrieked as I hoped back out. The water was F R E E Z I N G! I’d completely forgotten, what my sister told me the night before! I had 13 minutes to leave the house, there was no time to put an outfit together, I grabbed the nearest thing off of “the chair”, (come on you know the chair, we all have one) grabbed my coat and on the way out I remembered, MY HAIR!!
I’d straightened it the day before but somehow, Carrot Top, Lotte Schwartz and David Kleinfield’s love child managed to land on my head. I quickly grabbed a hat that was hanging on my door. I’m sure it didn’t match with anything I had on, but I didn’t care.
I made it just in time to catch the 7:28 am train, which guaranteed I’d get to work on time. I got a seat near the door, in a subway car that did not have a homeless person (which usually made me conscious of the things I have to be thankful for), panhandlers, or subway performers. Great, things were looking up. I put my headphones on and tried to enjoy the ride. Surprisingly, the train ride was smooth. No train traffic, sick passengers, stops due to an “earlier incident”or police investigation.
I arrived at Lexington avenue/53rd street station at 8:30 am. I happily made my way to the 6 train platform. The 12 minute ride would get me to work just in time. I reached the platform only to be greeted by a crowd that rivaled that of the Macy’s day parade. Ok, I’m exaggerating but geez, what in the world was going on!!
Determined to get on the next train, I inched my way to the front of the platform. A few minutes later I heard that dreadful MTA message : “Ladies and Gentlemen, due to an earlier incident we are experiencing heavy delays on our 4/5 and 6 subway lines”. EXPLETIVE, EXPLETIVE, EXPLETIVE!! After 15 minutes a train finally came. There was no need for me to move my legs to get onto the train because I was involuntary propelled by the swarm of people behind me that were pushing to get on the train.
I was Sandwiched between a student with horrible taste in music whose headphones were entirely too loud and a very kind man dress in business suit who sweated profusely but apologized every time he leaned, bumped or stepped on me as the train jerked from station to station. I finally reached my stop, I practically sprinted into work at 9:26 am very prepared to take the walk of shame to my office.
I got off of the elevator, the receptionist wasn’t there, “that’s weird”, I thought. The floor was empty, “oh shoot, am I missing a meeting?
I nervously poked my head by my boss’ office, armed with an embarrassed “Good morning” prepared to explain my horrific commute but the door was closed and and the garbage can was outside which indicated that he hadn’t arrived yet.
Wait, Is it a holiday? I settled in and started to go through my emails. I was copied on several emails, apparently almost everyone including my boss were running late due to the train delays from the “earlier incident”. Thank goodness! My day should start looking up from here right? I should be so lucky!
Around 12 pm I realized I’d left my charger at home. Later, My computer shut down as I was updating a report. After that, when I bought my lunch, I forgot to get my change. It was only $2.36, but it was mine! Then, on my way back from lunch I scuffed my favorite boots when I tripped crossing the street. Finally, on top of leaving my change I realized that I’d left my hat and gloves on the counter at the deli.
I had to a doctor’s appointment at 4 pm, so I had to leave the office at 3:30 pm. Feeling pretty bummed about my day I didn’t get much work done. 3:30 pm came quicker than I expected. This was the first time I was seeing this doctor, so I called the office to confirm the address. “Hi, I have an appointment at 4:00 pm, I’d like to confirm the office address”, the receptionist replied, “our office address is 50 East 32nd street”. I thanked her, packed up and headed to my appointment.
I got out at the Park Avenue station and walked toward East 32nd street. I saw 56, 54, 52 then 50… But 50 was a nameless set of gray metal doors next to Chris Noth’s Restaurant,The Cutting Room. It was clear the gray doors didn’t lead to any commercial office space, it had rows of dumpsters lined up against the wall. I pulled my phone out to call the doctor’s office and realized I left the number on my desk. It was minutes to 4 pm. I had no more energy. I didn’t know what else to do.
I stood at the corner of 32nd and Park Avenue, I was so frustrated. I was so angry. I wanted to yell, kick and scream at the top of my lungs, but all I could manage to do was cry. I didn’t care that my mascara was running or that people were probably looking at me. The happenings of the day had defeated me.
Sulking in my funky mood, I walked to the train station feeling so sorry for myself. A burly man looked at me and said, “wanna hug”, I gave him an icy glare that was equivalent to a swift double ninja kick.
As I neared the train station my friend Sabrina called, I tearfully explained to her what I’d gone through, and she LAUGHED, I was so upset and she was LAUGHING! The nerve! How insensitive! I decided to give her a piece of my mind. Still laughing and unmoved she invited me for a drink at our favorite Caribbean Restaurant-Bar-Lounge in the West Village, Negril’s.
Negril Village, a hip, soulful and vibrant celebrity hotspot. Addicted to their food, ambiance, drinks and vibe, over the years I became a staple. Negril’s, my New York version of Cheers. Happy, sad, or just releasing the stresses of everyday life. It was my place. My comforting go to. I got there before Sabrina, I ordered our usual drink, their signature rum punch.
One of the managers spotted me at the bar and kept me company while I waited and I explained my horrid day. I’d cheered up by the time Sabrina arrived (effects of the rum punch). Not satisfied with how much I’d already suffered Sabrina gave her account of my mini break down to the bartenders, restaurant staff, and patrons. We talked, joked and laughed. Negrils was just what the doctor ordered. Because, sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name.
I only had a few drinks that night but here are some pictures of some of the things I’ve had the privilege of enjoying!
Calypso shrimp and grits
Coconut rum punch
Curry shrimp, white rice, cauliflower, and broccoli
Rum and Mango
Shrimp and grits
Jerk steak, broccoli, string beans, and whipped sweet potatoes