When classes let out on Friday, I decided to visit the Central Park Zoo. I wanted to see if I could spot Amaya, the zoo's red panda. And, sure enough, there she was all nestled up in a tree! I was thrilled to finally be able to see the animal Inky has talked so fondly about.
At the zoo entrance, I happened upon a magnolia tree - isn't it beautiful? I love how magnolia blossoms make everything around them smell nice and sweet, even in such a big, crowded (and sometimes smelly) city like New York.
Next, I stopped by FAO Schwarz for a bit. I'm sure everyone - even if you've never been to New York - has heard of this store. It's only the greatest toy store ever! It's home to the infamous larger-than-life piano keyboard that you might've seen Tom Hanks play in the movie, Big. The store was established in 1862!!
The guard at the store entrance was kind enough to pose for a picture with me. Isn't he silly? The puppets on his hands reminded me a lot of life back at Fair Hollow since Fair Hollow has quite the collection of puppets. I was also reminded of all of the puppet shows Maman and Papa took Juliette and me to when we were little.
I walked several blocks more until I reached Rockefeller Center. Stopping to watch the ice skaters for a bit, I thought of my best friend from school, Nathalie. Nathalie is passionate about skating and is always trying to get me on the ice. Of course, I'm just as uncoordinated in ice skates as I am in ballet shoes, but I do appreciate others who actually can skate.
Finally, I stopped at AGPNY to meet Kanani Akina, our Girl of the Year for 2011. It's not a trip to New York City unless it includes a stop at AGPNY, now is it?
I really liked this neat photo op they had set up for Kanani. It makes me long to visit Hawaii for real (but I'd still choose to go back home to Paris over a trip to Hawaii!).
Kanani and I spent several minutes talking about France and Hawaii. I think I managed to convince her that she must visit France for herself one day. I also asked if she'd like to enroll at a school called Fair Hollow School for Girls, but she politely declined. She already missed Hawaii terribly and was anxious to go back. I can't say that I blame her!