The purpose of this trip was for Nicole to do a testimonial commercial for New York Presbyterian Hospital--the place where her life was saved more than once, and where she was literally put back together again. Former Mayor Ed Koch did a commercial for them that was very well received, so they decided to get a few more former high-profile or big-story patients to come in and do the same. Nicole made the list!
Megan Poole, who was one of Nicole's personal care assistants, went with us. She is currently in the same theatre program Nicole went through at the University of Southern Mississippi. She was able to work around exams to make the trip, and we met up at the Jackson airport last Saturday morning for a big adventure. The star-studded trip kicked off with our connecting flight from Charlotte to LaGuardia...when disco diva Patti LaBelle boarded our flight! Of course, Nicole connected with her right away and by the time we parted ways, Miz LaBelle was telling me that Nicole was a "trip" and that she was full of "spunk." Well ring my bell and tell me something I don't know!
Sunday we slept in a bit...then got a special visit from Annalisa Meyer, a young woman who was a patient at NYP the same time Nicole was. The last time I saw her, she was in a coma, sick with a rare form of encephelitis. Today she is a bright, beautiful college student at Columbia in NY. What a joy it was to see her doing so well.
After a lazy morning, we ate our fill for lunch in Whole Foods at Columbus Circle.
Then we loaded up for a trip to Chinatown, where we spent all afternoon walking and visting the many stalls filled with scarves, wraps, hats, sunglasses, and all manner of enticing items. We bargained and haggled our way through blocks and blocks of shops before calling it a day. (Nicole was on her feet, walking the streets of Chinatown, for a good three hours...a miracle, considering she is not even two and a half years out from her accident!)
Monday morning a car picked us up at the hotel at 6:30, and off we went to Silvercup Studios, where Nic's commercial was shot. She got true star treatment, doted on by a wardrobe stylist, hair and makeup, and just general pampering and coddling. We all enjoyed the wonderful craft services area with made-to-order omelets and waffles!