I'm in New York City!
Finally, after all of the hiding and stowing, the hemming and hawing, the exorbitant tip I gave to the cabbie so as not to reveal my whereabouts to the House of Glee, I am finally here in the greatest city on Earth. My first stop was to get a proper cup of coffee and a real bagel (poppyseed with chives in the cream cheese). I need to get one of those "We Are Happy to Serve You" coffee cups in ceramic. Afterward, I walked around Union Square, darted into the Thompkins Square Library for quick internet access, and then headed over to Books of Wonder for some books about gorillas in New York. They had stunning-looking cupcakes in their coffee-shop department (photos to come later), but in terms of taste, they did not measure up to Cupcake Royale. You could have knocked me over with a ten-ton feather when I saw that the House of Glee had caught up with me! Fortunately, no one saw me hiding in the picture-book section. Well, of course Lucia did (she sees more with her one functioning eye than her parents do with two apiece). "Brad!" she squealed. "Yook, Brad a ga-wiwwa!"
"Yes, sweetie, I know you miss Brad," the Landlady said blandly, browsing at a young adult science-fiction novel, while the Landlord was ensconced in a book about map-making.
The House of Glee met up with the Landlady's godmother and the Landlady's godmother's daughter ("LG" and "LGD") at the bookshop. LG said, "Oh, I didn't know Brad the Gorilla had moved to New York and joined a bakery."
"He hasn't," my Landlady said. "He's sitting on top of our hutch back home."
"Oh," LG replied, and there was an uncomfortable silence while LG and LGD glanced at each other with knowing looks. The Landlord and Landlady didn't notice, however, as Lucia had gotten icing all over her hands and was in the process of reaching for her brand-new copy of Mr. Putter and Tabby Ride the Train.
Confound it all! These people are going to blow my cover if I'm not more careful.
Today is the day I climb the Empire State Building.