Author Archives: jaimecooke

Adventure Point: The Cloisters, Met tour

The Cloisters was something I wanted to do from day one. All I heard about it was that it was pretty, had trees, and looked medieval. 

My friend Elliott from High School spent the summer interning for the MET at the Cloisters. The Cloisters is the MET’s medieval department. He spent the summer researching medievil art history and giving tours to school groups. Last Wednesday I came up and visited him at work, where he was able to give me a private tour of the museum. 

The Cloisters holds five Cloisters, which are squared-off courtyards in monasteries where priests would be able to go outside and relax since they were not allowed to leave the grounds. The five at the MET were from Spain and France and extremely old, with beautiful marble surfaces and intense details. The whole museum was filled with religious artwork that reminded me of being in Westminster Abbey. 


This is my friend Elliott next to one of the Unicorn Hunt Tapestries. The Unicorn Tapestries were my favorite exhibit because nobody knows who made them and it’s a mystery as to what they really mean. Some people believe the unicorn is a symbol for marriage because it is white and pure. Also, when this was made, people thought unicorns were real. 


The exterior of the MET Cloisters. The garden grows greenery that would have been found in a garden during the medieval times, including flowers that were used to make paint.


The entire area around the Cloisters was beautiful, with a view of the Hudson and big green trees. It really didn’t feel like I was in New York City anymore.


Adventure Point: Oysters Oysters Everywhere

So Harriet White approached me one evening about going to the Grand Central Oyster Bar. I had never been to Grand Central Station before nor had I ever had an Oyster, so I couldn’t say no. 

I met here there after work and we walked around Grand Central, me taking pictures of the ceiling and architecture and Harriet hoping I’d hurry up so we could eat. She needed to take photos of the bar for her final project, so we looked extremely touristy. I love looking touristy. 

We decided on the cheapest oyster they had and each ordered one (we’re on diets). Just kidding, we just didn’t feel like getting a meal. We also ordered Calamari because it’s delicious and we’re on vacation so we deserve it.

The oysters came and we both dipped them in ketchup, spritzed them with lemon, and shut our eyes. I must say, oysters are not that bad. However I really only tasted the ketchup. : )

I was surprised I made it so far into the trip before going to Grand Central, and I can’t believe I almost didn’t see it at all. 


Adventure Point: Coney Island Mermaid Parade

This adventure point has been done by all, but I must say it was quite the adventure. 

Annie, Ashley, and I set off to Coney Island via the A train early one saturday morning. It happened to be the day of the Mermaid Parade so we were immediately greeted with a hefty Coney Island bound crowd. On the train I saw my first Cardinal’s hat wearing fan, a four year old boy who did not seem like he knew what the Cardinals were. I digress, but the train ride took about an hour and we were very eager to see what Coney Island was all about.

Upon arrival, the crowd stormed the boardwalk, where a beautiful Nathan’s hotdog stand stood, serving even more beautiful looking hotdogs. Unfortunately, I did not have a hotdog because we wanted to see the parade.

The Mermaid Parade is exactly what it sounds like: a parade of people dressed like mermaids/mermen.

I’m pretty sure every drag queen in Queen’s was there (sorry for the inappropriate picture). Image 

The Mermaid Parade was a blast, but Annie, Ashley and I couldn’t see very well so we headed to the beach. The crowd on the beach was just as big, but we managed to push our way down to the water. 



I really wanted to see Coney Island, and I’m glad I chose the Mermaid Parade to do it. I’m not a huge roller-coaster girl, so the draw is lost on me. I would go back for the beach (and for a hotdog), but I value my neck too much to ever ride the Cyclone.


Final Project

Sick in the City

I’m sick, and I’m not happy about it.

I woke my last Saturday in the city to find that I had a soar throat and a runny nose. This was not part of the plan. 

When I get sick at home, I lay in bed all day with tissues and medicines within arms reach. Here, I have none of that. So when I woke up, I didn’t know what to do. 

Thankfully my mother had the wherewithal to have me pack DayQuil. I took some and then headed to Real Deal to buy tissues, cough drops, and Milano cookies (I deserve them, I’m sick). 

I had high hopes for my Saturday, but quickly my body decided that laying in bed all day was what it was going to do. I ate a banana in hopes that maybe a banana-a-day also kept the doctor away, but it didn’t help. 

Now it is Sunday and I feel about the same. I’m not sure what a fever feels like, but I might have one. Either way, I’m going to work tomorrow for my last week at Cake Boss. At least this cold is distracting me from my how sad I am to say goodbye to New York.

Ikea: You’re one-stop POÄNG shop!


I really missed out on a great purchase at Ikea. This Broccoli man hanging wall pouch would have looked great in my college apartment. 

Ikea was overwhelming and impressive. Annie, Ashley, and I took the ferry over to Ikea Island last Sunday to explore and see what all the talk was about. Ikea felt like a different planet, where furniture is the only thing that matters. The warehouse had arrows pointing us in one direction, like mules being shuffled through a foreign land of plywood and microfiber.

While I didn’t buy anything (except a hotdog at the food court- duh) I will say I did steal a fork and knife from the cafeteria. 

Adventure Point: Sailing in the Long Island Sound

Today I went on my second sea excursion of the summer. I woke up bright and early to catch the train to Stamford, Ct., where I would meet up with my fellow Cake Boss crew member, Luke, who owned a sailboat. 

I have always had a love for the water, which is why I chose to run down by the Hudson as often as I can. Having the opportunity to go out on the sound was something I could not pass up.

Since I am very pale, I spent the better part of the trip reapplying sunscreen and sitting in the shade of the sail. The water was very calm and there was not much wind, but I didn’t mind. Being on the boat made me feel far away from the city, which was a much needed break. The land was hazy in the distance, and the blue water reminded me of home more than it did New York (technically we were in Ct.). 

Being an eager beaver, I had Luke teach me a little bit about how to sail. At first I took us straight out of the wind channel and into a dead stop. We had to redirect the boat back into the wind, but I was allowed to try again and this time I calmed down and held us at a good angle. Sailing is actually the most fun thing I have ever done and standing behind the wheel I forgot about all my worries (like my sunburn) and concentrated only on the boat. I think it was a very therapeutic experience for me. The city had started to wear on me (as much as I love it) and the Missouri girl in me just needed a break. 

I feel extremely lucky to have gotten to go sailing twice this summer. I don’t know when I’ll go again but I hope it is sooner rather than later.