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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Victorious, Fun Day On Long Island

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I was victorious this one time!  I had a victorious, fun day on Long Island!  I had to jump through hoops to make it happen, but this time, it worked. It rarely does.

friends playing last August

It was a year ago this month that I attempted to have some fun outside of immediate family gatherings and holidays and parties with the immediate family. (See What About Restaurants, Parties, Invites And Public Places?)

I wanted to do something fun with my daughter, a Mother/Daughter day.  But what?  I love seeing live shows and LOVE Broadway, but it's just too much for me to travel into the city these days.  I also worry about having a medical issue so far away.  

I deserved some fun.  Especially after the recent fiasco.  (See 10 Ways I Survived the Bathroom Fiasco)

CLICK VIDEO - Scene from The Nutcracker

I saw several shows at Lincoln Center including an amazing opera and the New York City Ballet. My daughter and I saw George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker about 10 years ago.  I'm so happy I've done those things and had those experiences. 

[Photo: Amazon]
Sandy Duncan on Broadway as Peter Pan

Luckily, I've seen more Broadway shows than I can count.  Two of my favorites were Yul Brynner in The King And I and Sandy Duncan in Peter Pan.  I was very young when I saw each of those shows but they were unforgettable. The last show I saw was Jersey Boys about 9 years ago and it was just amazing.

I checked out a local theater.  I made some calls and found out that they don't do any cooking in the venue, the show I was interested in didn't use any smoke (there was "smoke" in the show but it wasn't real smoke so I was told).  It didn't bother me, so that was a plus, thankfully.  

When I saw the "smoke" start not far into the show, I panicked, thinking, oh no, they gave me wrong information (which happens sometimes to my despair).  Will we be calling an ambulance?

We planned to see the show on Thursday, August 10, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.  Four of us were attending. Me, my daughter, my sister and my niece.

My daughter suggested we go to lunch before the show.  Oh boy, here we go.  (See What About Restaurants, Parties, Invites And Public Places?)  She recommended Toast, which is right near the theater.  


The young people frequent the Patchogue area for the clubs, theater, concerts, restaurants, general nightlife and of course the shore.  My son, nephew and niece all go together often and separate for other reasons.  My daughter frequents an establishment that holds a Country Music night weekly and meets friends there.  

CLICK VIDEO - shot by me a few years ago

We had a private room a few years back to celebrate my sister's birthday at Off Key Tikki.  I couldn't have cocktails or order food, but they allowed me to bring my own food!  I enjoyed the music and kept myself busy filming and taking pictures.  I left early; the rest of the group decided to go to other nightclubs in the area.  

My daughter said that we could sit far from the kitchen and that the kitchen was closed off.  Of course, I would need to bring my own food.  I said I'd give it a try and if I couldn't stay, I'd just wait in the car for them.  We planned on her picking me up at 11:15 and meeting my sister and niece there before 12:00. 

I used to work in Patchogue until 2006.  I went to college there in 1983 and again from 1999 until 2006.  There's a lot of business in the area and at lunch time, the restaurants all get packed.  My niece said you could "get on a line to be seated" by using an app and so, before her and my sister left for the restaurant, my niece put us on the line to enter.  Technology.  Sometimes it comes in handy!

CLICK VIDEO - filmed by me a few years ago

Patchogue was like a mini city when I worked there from 2001 until 2006.  Since then, it's been built up a lot.  Many of the old Victorian homes along the main streets have been turned into businesses since the early 1970's. Many along the side streets have been restored and are still private residences.

I pointed to one of the old homes as we drove through town up to Main Street and said to my daughter, "See that house, it was once in the middle of nowhere, now, a city has been built around it!" 

CLICK VIDEO shot by me a few years ago

She giggled and I thought back to when I first moved out this far East on Long Island.  Back then it was still desolate.  (See 12 Facts About Long Island, New York)

The new condos built near the water were built to resemble the old architecture, to keep the feel of the community.  

The new apartment buildings also try to keep the theme.  

The area is hopping with young people working, living and playing.  There's business, restaurants, clubs, rooftop venues, theater, shopping, colleges and more all in walking distance.  Not to mention the town is on the water on the south shore, so there's plenty of beaches, boating and the like.  


I went to college in Patchogue myself and graduated in 2006.  My college offered an adult education program, designed for working adults.  

CLICK VIDEO - Patchogue and Brickhouse Brewery

Sometimes after class on a Sunday, a group of us would head into town and have some appetizers and cocktails at a local establishment, The Brickhouse Brewery.  When I worked in Patchogue, I'd do happy hour after work once in a while with coworkers as well, also at The Brickhouse.  Those were the days when I was NORMAL. 

pictures taken by me at the Anniversary dinner at Lombardi's on the Bay
Lombardi's On The Bay - shot taken by me from the docks looking toward town

CLICK VIDEO The Lombardi Family Cooking at home

Five years ago my parents celebrated their 50th Anniversary in Patchogue at Lombardi's on the Bay - The Great South Bay.  The video of the Lombardi family cooking at home reminds me very much of my own family!  (See I Can't Go!!! Mom's Meatballs!!!)

So my daughter picked me up at about 11:30 on Thursday, she was running a bit late.  She drives on the highways, like NORMAL PEOPLE do!  If you have been following my blog, you know, I don't ever take highways.  I'm terrified. (See What Is Gephyrophobia?)  This caused me a lot of anxiety. 

I told my daughter, fine, but I'm closing my eyes.  I said, it's like the scene in Gone With The Wind when Clark Cable's character Rhett Butler blindfolds the horse and says "You'll like it better if you don't see anything."  

Gone With the Wind is my mom's favorite movie and because of her, became my favorite.  My daughter and I watched it together one cold winter day when she was little.  

My daughter found my comment rather funny and we both got a good laugh.  She continued laughing at me with since I had my hands over my eyes.  You thought I was kidding, I wasn't. I am so NOT FUN to drive with.  (See The Summer of '77 - Oh The Anxiety)

It was a fairly short ride, thankfully.  Parking is always a challenge in Patchogue, but she found a spot pretty quickly.  

My daughter is young and fast.  I cannot walk that fast so I trailed behind as we walked from the parking lot to the restaurant. She was waiting for me, but I felt like the little kid trying to keep up with mommy!  Roles reverse through the years.  (See A Single Parent Lesson)

As we walked, my niece texted my daughter saying they got a table and it was outside!  Even better.  

There were no vents from the kitchen in the outside area we were sitting in.  I would be ok there.  I couldn't order anything, but at least I could sit with them and live vicariously through them! 

Of course, most people going out for lunch and a show don't have to worry about cooking and packing up food they could bring with them.  They just shower, dress and leave for some fun.  Not me.  
  • I had to worry about preparing and packing up my own food.  
  • I had to make sure the restaurant would allow me to bring my own food. 
  • I had to worry about not being able to stay at the restaurant.
  • I was worried about any chemicals they may spray at the restaurant or theater. 
l - r my daughter's meal, my niece's meal and my sister's meal
They all said their meals were delicious.  My daughter even brought food home with her.  My sister and niece left a lot of their potatoes and didn't want to bother taking anything home.  

the meal I brought for myself
I brought boiled chicken, string beans, a red potato, a mozzarella stick and a jar of baby food apples, all organic and all gluten free.  Everything was also corn, egg, nut, and soy free. I can't use any spices, including salt, so everything I eat is bland. I HATE black pepper and doubt I'd be able to use it anyway. (See Oh, I Know, You Have Celiac Disease. Umm, No, Not Exactly)

while they ordered their drinks, I kept busy snapping pictures

We had nice conversation and some laughs over lunch.  We had some time to kill before the show so the girls decided we would go for cocktails, well, they would go for cocktails.  I had my bottled water I brought from home.

l - r  my sister's drink, my daughter's drink, my niece's drink - not sure what they were

We sat outside again, this time at the sidewalk tables out front, and I drank my water while they enjoyed their drinks.

Disclaimer:  By the time they drove it was four hours after they had ONE drink, which was not very strong and they had eaten prior to it.  If you know anything about how this works, and I do, my family has owned restaurants and bars, trust me they were neither drunk nor impaired.  "The ONLY safe BAC level for driving is .00.  If you've been drinking, the only way to get to .00 is to wait at least 45 minutes per drink." Read more   No one in my family has ever driven drunk or impaired. It's why we have designated drivers, call Ubers  or cabs or family/friends who will drop off and pick people up or if we do enjoy a drink we don't drive until hours later when our level is back to .00.

The show was amazing.  I hadn't seen a live show in years, so it was so exciting for me. We all enjoyed the spectacular talent and there was a variety of acts, something for everyone.  My favorite was the jumprope sequence. It reminded me of being a kid playing jump rope in the city with my cousins.  

We had good seats.  In my opinion, if you can't get good seats for whatever reason, it's simply not worth going.  I made sure to get an aisle seat in case I had to get up.  I don't like to bother people.  

I sat on the aisle on purpose, my daughter next to me, my niece next to her and my sister in the fourth seat in.  

I can't sit for long periods, so I often have to get up due to the issues with my legs and I don't want to disturb people.  At intermission, they all chose to stay in their seats.  I had to get up for a bit, so I walked up front, slow as I am, it felt better to move.  It felt good to sit back down again too.

There was a long line at intermission for the bathroom, as usual.  I was glad I used it when we first arrived at the theater.  Of course, I was concerned as to whether or not they had recently used bleach or other chemicals to clean before the show started.  

Luckily, they had not, per the employee I asked and when I entered, obviously she was correct as I didn't smell anything and I was fine.  To think, I even have to be scared to use the public bathroom for fear I may leave in an ambulance.  


Funny Story:  When I worked in Patchogue, I answered the phone one day and someone on the other end asked me, "Is this the Patch-a-gewey office?" I laughed for an hour as did many in the office, it was so cute.  We get it too, because saying the names of towns on Long Island is very difficult.  To hear how it should be pronounced, click here or the video above.


My husband proposed to me on the dock down in Patchogue. It was beautiful as we looked out over the Great South Bay towards Fire Island.  



A lot has happened in Patchogue for me through the years.  If I were young and healthy now, I'd definitely move there in one of the new condos or apartment buildings.  I'd work, live and play there. (See 15 Things I Loved About Being Young, Single And Healthy)

Even in my own backyard, there's been problems.  (See But It's JUST... - Part 1 of Series)   For the first time in literally years, miraculously, I was able to have a victorious, fun day on Long Island in one of my favorite towns!

August is National Breastfeeding Month. This year's National Breastfeeding Month Theme -- Charting the Course Together -- will focus on how we can use... Read More  Some say breastfeeding helps avoid allergy/immunology issues later in life and helps control weight for a lifetime and much more!  
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