We had to check out really early in the morning — 8am — so that we could make it over to the Brooklyn Tabernacle service by 9am. Gave the hotel desk our bags and set off for the subway station.
We got to the Brooklyn Tabernacle minutes before the service started, and I was thinking, “OK, we’ll be up high in the back somewhere…” but when we walked up, the usher said, “Follow me, there are some seats in the front.” What!?! And away we went, to the FRONT ROW! The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir was already singing (they are AMAZING, AMAZING, AMAZING!) and I was already crying — overwhelmed by blessings and grateful for what God had done. The music was heavenly. Their sound is as amazing as the church’s story. You have to check it out. So inspiring. The pastor got up and just moved me again to tears. The whole morning was so moving. We went over to their bookstore afterward and bought some messages and a few CDs & gifts for family.
We thought we’d try to get over to Grimaldi’s one more time for that amazing pizza, but when we got there, the line was already down the street. Bryan was sad, but stood in line anyway — we were gonna risk it. When the restaurant opened at Noon, an ENTIRE BUS of people got to go in first, before any of us in line (some tour group) — we were bummed! But then, when all seemed lost, a group of about 15 people in front of us got discouraged and left the line!! And I am pretty sure they regretted that decision right after they made it, because the restaurant wasn’t full yet and we made it in with the first wave of people — there were just 4 seats left after we sat down!! Thank you Lord! We ordered immediately, but when everyone around us got their food, we realized that our order was misplaced — or actually, we found out somebody else got our pizza! Ha. Well, we eventually got ours and once again ate it all!
With our bellies and hearts full, we headed out for our last subway ride home back to Manhattan. We were sitting in the subway station in Brooklyn and I remembered, “Oh, man, I was gonna buy a hoodie I saw in a shop by the pizza place…” but when I looked up, standing there was a friend from high school, Jordan Ballard! I said, “Jordan?” and she turns around — sure enough, it was her! I gave her a big hug and we got to ride the subway back to Manhattan with her, catching up on all her adventures — she’s now co-starring in a new Broadway play, Enron with “President Logan” from the TV series 24! How fun! So happy for her, and great to see her! I had been thinking about how I wished we could have gotten together on this trip — and then, look what God did. Turned out she had never used that subway station before that day, but the subway station near her apartment was shut down. So fun! After she got off the subway Bryan said, “If you had stopped to get that hoodie, you’d have missed her completely.” Wow.
And like that, we were back at the hotel, grabbing bags, and catching a cab to JFK airport.
What a trip. What amazing memories. Thank you Lord!
P.S. Bryan is not only an amazing husband, but an incredible trip planner. He should start a business. I’m serious! Thank you, Bryan, for making this trip so special! I LOVE YOU!