Ha! You thought I was done with New York City didn’t you?! Not hardly. I could write a book!
Let’s see…did we talk about the flight into NYC?
Or eating supper and meeting friends in Grand Central Station?
Or spending the day in a Greek restaurant? I thought so.
Or shopping in Bloomingdale’s? By myself. And walking down Park Ave and catching a taxi. By my self!!!!
Or closing down a bar? Thought so.
But did I tell you about Sunday in New York? This could well be the highlight of the trip for me, in spite of my fascination with The Christmas Tree!
Here’s how it started…Frenz’s daughter wanted to take me to her church. So we headed out and arrived breathless to the West Side Redeemer Presbyterian Church promptly at 11:00. It was standing room only! I was expecting around 20 people??
I looked towards the stage and was met with the amazing sight of a 15 piece string orchestra plus 2 trumpeters, 1 timpanist, a pianist and a 20 member choir. Now this was NOT Cousin Deallie and Uncle Chig from across town who sang once in a high school choir. No way. These folks were pros and man, could they put out the music!! (Not that Uncle Chig can’t make beautiful music…it’s just that his style might not exactly fit in? After all, the Lord loves all voices praising Him!!!)
What music you ask?! None other than Handel’s “Messiah”…exerpts were sprinkled throughout the service, along with readings and congregational Christmas hymns. (I’m pretty sure Uncle Chig never heard of Handel, much less his “Messiah”!)
The readings themselves were works of art, supplied by the Grand Master in His Scriptures. Genesis 22:15-18 was read in Armenian, followed by the musical genius of the folks on stage. Then Isaiah 60:2-3 and 9:2, 6-7 was read in the Korean (we followed along in English with our programs in hand!) Swahili, Farsi and Mandarin readings completed the service, with the choir’s “Hallelujah” icing the cake and “Angels We Have Heard on High” being the strawberry and cream on top of said cake. All I could think was, “THIS is how Heaven is going to sound like!!”
Plus now I can say that I’ve sung with some of the best musicians in NYC!! Whether they wanted me to or not.
What a worship experience! What a musical experience! THIS was my favorite part of the entire trip!! Besides being wonderfully and beautifully executed, it was a totally unexpected treat!
After church, we headed out to meet some friends for lunch and they were the sweetest couple from my hostesses’ hometown! We then boogied on to Bryant Park to connect with Frenz and #1 daughter and later toured the New York City Library, which is a work of art itself!
We strolled through the library, which is not only massive but is the result of wonderful artisans, most notably the wood carvings that fill the library with warmth and age. The library itself is a museum. And always, always, ALWAYS…remember to look up. (You thought I was going to say “be quiet”, didn’t you?!!)
The words “Look up” might bring to mind some religious elbowing to “look to God” and that’s a good thing. Always. But in this case, a second connotation is suggested…look up to view the daunting art that is above your head in this library. And could also give you a neck “crick”. I’m pretty sure that I have never witnessed so much magnificent artwork on ceilings. Ever!
But then, I looked OUT a window in the Catalog Room (which is arguably as large as the little town I live just outside of!) and there stood the Empire State Building.