4 September 2017, USA Labor Day – Steve & I were staying in New York City, the real New York, as some say. We were guests of the HH Sheikh Mansoor Festival at the St. Regis hotel.
We enjoyed the many subtle amenities, including our own pot of coffee in the morning in this most gracious hotel.
The journey has been interesting. We traveled to the Delaware race day on 2 September, and were surprised at how many came from all over the United States for the 25th running of the Buzz Brauninger Arabian Distaff Handicap Gr 1. “http://wp.me/p26iCL-MmN“
Even though it was pouring rain outside, it did not dampen the spirits of the trainers, owners and enthusiasts present.
I managed to take some decent sloppy footing photos from shelter as I was dressed also for the evening dinner hosted by the Eastern Arabian Racing Association in the Clubhouse. The lovely dinner began with a warm welcome and the ceremony awarding the AJC Tent of Honor Award to Kathy Smoke. This award, given for extraordinary service, is well deserved by Kathy for all of her contribution and coordination during her 10 years as president of the Arabian Jockey Club.
On Sunday we took the AMTRAK on to New York. I was hoping to see some of the lovely countryside, but the views across this stretch of America, from Pennsylvania through New Jersey and on to New York’s Penn Station, were mostly along the underbelly of America, and much of it tattooed with graffiti.
Our ride on Lyft, our new best friend, from the train station to the St. Regis was easy and informative. Would you believe that our Polish driver knew that the Arabian horse industry in Poland has now been taken over entirely by the government and those in charge know nothing about horses? I had no idea that this action of over a year ago is so well-known even by those who no longer live in the country.
Taking a walk around the still damp neighborhood of 5th Avenue and Central Park, we ran smack into the Trump Tower across the street surrounded with Secret Service and Police kiosks.
The side entrance with Starbucks had more tourists going in and out through the metal detectors than Radio City Music Hall has on the night the Rockettes are dancing.
We then had to visit the Plaza Hotel across from Central Park, scene of many of my favorite stories about Dorothy Parker, famous theatre critic for Vanity Fair, and the capricious character from the Eloise novels.
On to Monmouth Park, New Jersey, on 4 September, we witnessed Paddys Day taking the third and final leg of the Triple Jewel. “http://wp.me/p26iCL-MnP”
The New Jersey day was as sunny as Delaware was wet. The Monmouth Park track was built in 1870 when horse racing was a vibrant past time and summer meant going to the “Jersey shore”. The generous ideals of the era still exist in event space, private boxes and catering, while the track and saddle areas work well for horses and patrons.
The track has suffered the whims of politicians and racing patrons over the years, but the number of people in the stands showed that many on the right side of the US still enjoy their horse racing in person.
It was quite nice to spend the day with media personalities Derek Tommo Thompson, broadcasting live on YAS TV, and Julie Krone, who had been a top rider at the Monmouth track in the 1980’s. We were all surprised and pleased to hear the many welcoming calls from the Monmouth staff, of “Hi, Julie,” as we walked together to the track. She was and is a favorite with all, and her meet-and-greet later had more people in lines than the latest Star Trek movie.
On to Paris –