Once done with the Met (and I've probably forgotten about a million details, but figured it was long enough as it was ;) ) we went outside and caught a cab to The Strand - a large 2nd hand/bargain book store by Union Square. I have to say, I love having friends who'll go book browsing with me (all three friends I met in NYC were happy to oblige) and who enjoys it as much as I do, so I don't end up feeling rushed.
The Strand was pretty amazing - SO many excellent books, and at great prices too. I could have used a fortune in there, but managed to limit myself to just 3 books. I think it's a very, very good thing that books aren't as cheap in Denmark - I'd have run out of space in my apartment ages ago!!!
From The Strand we took another cab (to spare my legs) up to Times Square for a cocktail hour at the Marriott Hotel. Irina knew of a bar on the 8th floor which sported a gorgeous view of Times Square, so we decided to go there for a glass of champagne to celebrate some really awesome news Irina had gotten earlier that day :) This is the first time I've ever seen designated elevators though! Well, that's not entirely sure, I've seen elevator bays with signs of "For floors A-K take this elevator, for floors L-Z take that elevator", but here you went to a number pad, typed in the floor you were going to, and a small computer screen told you which elevator to go to! Rather fancy, that ;)
For dinner, Irina had recommended the restaurant, Queen of Sheba (10th between 45th and 46th) as having great atmosphere, excellent food and being the perfect ice breaker when dining with "strangers", and she was right on all three accounts! Queen of Sheba is an Ethiopian restaurant where the food is served in a communal (or table-al) basket, and then you use bread to eat it with your fingers. Irina suggested we get a sampler so we could try a lot of different things, (a good idea as it would have been absolutely impossible to choose otherwise!) and recommended their honey-wine to drink. Absolutely delicious and very different from just about anything I've ever tried before. The closest I've ever come was the Syrian Mesa we tried in Cyprus.
One really weird thing about the restaurant though... we entered, and it had AC like every other place I'd been to in NYC... but Irina and I sat down right in front of a heater!!! It was still cooler than outside, but how utterly weird! ...not to mention counter-productive. Gave us something to laugh at though ;)
And just like the rest of the day, we never stopped talking ;) I really didn't want the day to end as I was having such a great time together with Irina - I think it's pretty safe to say we got on like a house on fire :)
On the way back to the hotel Lars told me that he'd spent most of the day in Brooklyn where - among other things - he'd found the Wendys that served as "McDowells" in "Coming to America" (one of Lars' favourite movies). I thought it was rather cool that he'd found it :) Back at the hotel room, Lars turned on the TV to wind down a bit before going to bed... and discovered that "Coming to America" was on!!! Now what are the odds of THAT?!