As I alluded to in my declaration of being alive and well in New York City, I took some time last Thursday to stroll through Central Park. I first came across a softball field with multiple games in progress. Don't these people have jobs? Just kidding. I sat on a bench and played around with my BlackBerry. Addiction to the device is not out of the question, though I will try to avoid it, however I now understand how it gained the nickname “crackberry.”
It was a cooler day then when I arrived, thanks to cloudy skies. Behind me, kids and adults alike were climbing on a big rock outcropping. I couldnt' resist either, and scrambled up to a ledge which still overlooked the softball games, except there was now a tree blocking much of the view. It felt like the ideal place for a short meditation, and sitting under the tree reminded me of when I sat under the Bodhi Tree in Bohdgaya, India, so I closed my eyes and tried to quiet my mind. I wanted to know what to do now that I finished my trip.
About 10 minutes later, I felt a reassuring calmness. I knew what I wanted to do, and needed to do, to be happy. Now it is just a matter of being disciplined enough to go after it.
I climbed down from the rocks and pushed further north into the park. I came across a big open field, and took another seat, this time with my back against a tree, and the field and NYC skyline before me. In the distance, I saw what appeared to be a crowd of people, but I was not in a rush to see what was going on.
After another 10 minutes or so, I got up and started heading toward the crowd. I noticed production equipment, and a camera, and security people, but it didn't look like enough “stuff” to be a big Hollywood movie. But there were a bunch of paparazzi with some telephoto lenses, so I knew there must be someone noteworthy involved. On the grass in front of the camera, a few guys and a woman in a pink t-shirt were casually playing football. I asked another onlooker if there was anyone famous, and she said Drew Barrymore.
You probably know what came next – me standing behind the paparazzi trying to snap photos with my 2x zoom BlackBerry camera. I figured those guys knew the best place to stand. While I could've done better with my 8-megapixel Canon, I was pleased with the smartphone's performance on the fly, yet again.
Meanwhile, the professionals had their fingers held on the shutter and I could hear the rapid-fire clicking of photos being taken split seconds apart. At one point, I even heard one of the guys excitedly say “they're kissing.” I'm sure he had dollar signs in his eyes at that sight!
Later, when I Google'd Drew Barrymore, I came across photos and news clips about the day. According to the classy piece, Drew Barrymore Snogs The Face Off Justin Long, the movie being shot, Going The Distance, is set to be released in 2010 and Justin Long has been a on/off boyfriend in real life. Check out the article for a close-up of the snogging.
I had messaged my brother that I was looking at Drew Barrymore, and he called me back and said he might know somebody on the production crew (he works as a set dresser for TV shows and movies). By the time we met up, the crew had already moved on to the next location, so we walked past the production trucks but he didn't recognize anyone.
New rule: until I'm actually living in NYC, I'm still allowed to get excited about star sightings, and this by far, was my biggest to-date.