We had to carry our bags around New York all day since we had arrived at LGA but were departing from JFK in the evening. After waiting about 15 minutes, our bags came out. Katie’s hiking backpack was still wrapped up in the protective laundry bag as she checked it, but JT’s hiking backpack had already seemed to lose its cover. (We come to find out later when checking into Etihad that the TSA had removed the laundry bag and shoved it into the backpack)
We loaded money ($14 charged to cc + $1.54 bonus + $1.50 remaining value from previous trips) onto our shared MTA MetroCard (that we got when we were in town last October for ABGT100 and used during our February NYC Daycation) and boarded the M60-SBS bus towards Harlem. We decided to stay on the bus and cross the Robert F Kennedy Bridge into Harlem rather than transferring to the N subway line. Google Maps claimed that the two options were supposed to take similar times and we figured that the views would be better on the bus. And the views were great! However, we figure that it was not the fastest option. If you are in a hurry, you probably should transfer to the N line.
Once in Harlem, we walked by the historic Apollo theatre before getting on the D subway line towards downtown. We were pleasantly surprised that the subway didn’t stop between the 125th Street stop we got on and the 59th Street stop we were getting off.
We had hoped to go straight to the Daily Show ticket pickup, but our flight delay and slow bus transit meant that we stood a near-zero chance of actually getting tickets. So, we decided to skip it and head for lunch.
We ate at a nice Turkish restaurant (ABA Turkish Restaurant 325 W 57th St New York, NY 10019) located just SW of the SW corner of Central Park. JT had the İskender kebab and Katie had the kofte platter. We also received some good bread with olive oil, which was a good starter since we were pretty hungry from the long morning. Both of our entrées were pretty massive and happily reminded us of meals in Turkey. The restaurant was a bit expensive ($45.09 after tax and tip) for us typically, but what else can you expect for a nice Turkish restaurant in midtown New York City?
After lunch, we walked over to the Nightly Show with our bags. JT had read on the Nightly Show website that you could arrive at 5pm and get good tickets for the 6pm taping. Also, on recent shows, they sounded a bit desperate to get people to come see a taping. There was even ticket reservations still available online that morning! So we were somewhat surprised by the line of about 55 people when we arrived at 4:30pm. They separated the VIP people around 5:15pm, and we finally went through security with tickets 36 and 37 at 5:45pm.
From asking a few VIP ticket holders how they got their tickets, we found that many seemed to be given to Daily Show ‘ticket holders’ who ended up getting there too late to get tickets. So, it seems that we could have also gotten VIP tickets, if we had taken the time to go by the Daily Show studio before lunch. We finally got seated around 6:15pm (third row to the right side), and the show finally started taping just before 7pm (vs 6 pm scheduled). The show was pretty good, especially the round table segment. It was interesting to see the live edits and live production decisions. Although neither of us are really Nightly Show fans, it was a fun experience.
The taping finished at 7:40pm. Since we had a 10:40pm flight, we walked to the subway and planned to take the E line to the JFK Airtrain. The E train Google Maps was sending us to came 3 minutes early, and we barely missed it. We checked the schedule and saw that the next train was not arriving for 20 minutes. Google Maps predicted an arrival at 9:40pm if we took the next train, we opted to bail on the subway and take an Uber to the airport.
JT heard that Uber was offering a flat rate $36 UberPool ride to JFK. The idea is two sets of up-to-2 people would be picked up downtown and taken to JFK. Our experience ended up being very stressful, though, as we got pooled with a girl nearby who was being dropped off ~15 minutes off of our path. We had figured that Uber would pair us with another rider headed to JFK, not one headed to Flushing! We finally arrived at JFK at 9:15pm. To top it off, we were even overcharged for the ride, but Uber says that they will correct the fare. UPDATE: Fare corrected the next day.