Irene & Fashion Night Out & Harley Davidson's

Holidays in the US generally follow a standard mode. There is a lot of eating out, an inordinate amount of time spent at Macy's and Target, and of course above all, just sitting around with Anu and Will. But this time there were two unique occasions, or three to be exact which left some memories behind, and made the day or night for me.

Hurricane Irene - there was so much noise about it - - everyone seemed to be preparing for a total devastation of their areas. there was so much discussion about the speed of the winds, the probable lack of electricity, the problems that may occur. Maybe it was was an overload of information, but to some extent it was better than the Indian attitude of let us see what will happen, and of  "chalta hai, sab theek ho jayega". We also went out and bought a lot of ready to eat food - which would not need the microwave, a lot of torches were put in strategic places and candles and matches came out of the cupboards.

At 2 am I woke up and sat at the window for about an hour and watched nature at her furious best. She ranted and she raved, she shook all the trees around and she poured at her terrifying best. Somehow, she did not scare me, but I enjoyed just watching her show her dominance over mankind. There was nothing anyone could have done at that point. I have rarely seen winds at that speed. I have rarely watched huge pine trees swaying, and I have rarely enjoyed sitting and watching a thunderstorm with such delight and awe. It was worth the loss of sleep. I do not have the ability to describe it, no words seem adequate, but it was something to keep stashed away in my memories as a night of amazement.


Macy's of New York is still one of my favorite haunts. I know exactly where I will get trousers to fit me, where the Starbuck's is located and where to get my tourist discount coupon from. But this time was different. New York was celebrating Fashion Night Out. Every floor had some celebrity on it, there were DJ's and musicians in various corners, and needless to say there were multitudes on each floor. There was a festive atmosphere everywhere, and much to my surprise even the customers were dressed in their finest clothing!

The mystery was solved only when we discovered that on that evening every clothing store was going to be open till 11 pm, and that there were free hop-on and hop-off buses to take you from store to store so that you can to  your hearts content.

Fifth Avenue had even more people, and it was such a delight to just stand and watch the exuberance and the enthusiasm. Justin Bieber was in one of the stores ( we did not see him - there was no way to get past the screaming girls), the GLEE actress was there, the store windows of other stores had DJ's playing great music in them. What a lovely idea this was, you dress up in your latest clothes, you get to see your favorite icons, there is a festive atmosphere all around and of course, you shop till you are satiated. I love watching people, and this was a new look at the youngsters of New York. Another memory to store within my depository.

In Norwalk, 9/11 was honoured by a motorbike parade. It started from a parking garage very near Anu's home and all morning you could hear this loud machines going past to gather there.The parade was preceded by a fire engine and an ambulance and police bikes with all red blue anfd lights flashing. Then cam the 4000 bikes, yes that is right, there 4000 bikes. the sound was deafening, but the machines were spectacular. My special favorite was a golden mob ike, which was the size of a small car, then there was one where the rider had one a mask - he looked like something out of a horror movie. For over an hour we sat on the roadside just watching the riders go past, waving flags and victory signs.

Memories are made of days such as these - these are what make visits to other parts of the world special.




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