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The Little Big Apple
The Little Big Apple
The Little Big Apple
Ebook172 pages2 hours

The Little Big Apple

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars



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About this ebook

Patricia Ann Oaks shares her true life stories, guaranteed to inspire, uplift, and bring you joy. Follow Patricia through the streets of Manhattan, beside the River Seine in Paris, up to Cinderella's Castle in the Magic Kingdom, along the Canals of Venice, California, and south of the border to the beautiful people and beautiful city of Tijuana, Mexico. Patricia hopes to open your eyes to the little stories you might miss if you aren't looking.
Release dateFeb 14, 2014
The Little Big Apple
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Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

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  • Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    This is the followup book to Pat's "The Old Green Rocker," and the format is the same. Lots of wonderful stories from Pat's life that show what a true adventurer she is. You will find yourself laughing yourself silly, crying your eyes out, shaking your fist in outrage, and saying a prayer of thanks that you picked up this marvelous tome. Pat is not afraid to tell you about her life, and she will refreshingly tell the truth while she does it. You won't always like the truth. Parts of this book will make you feel uncomfortable, and if you avoid reading it because of that, I suspect you lead a far too boring life. So I dare you to catch up on Pat's exploits, shenanigans, and expeditions. You won't forget it, and you'll thank me for pointing you to a book full of stories that will attach themselves to your heart. . .just like Pat herself does.

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The Little Big Apple - Patricia Ann Oaks


99th and Broadway

Tommy, John thomas, and I saved our money so that we could sublease an apartment in Manhattan for six months. While we were apartment hunting, we were having lunch with a friend on the Upper West Side. He told us when we met him that his wife was going to join us. She got there about ten minutes later, and as we were eating, she asked why we were in New York. We told her we were looking for an apartment to lease for about six months. She said that her voice teacher was getting ready to go on tour and was looking for someone to sublease her apartment. She immediately went to call her teacher. After lunch, we got on the train and went to 99th Street and Broadway to meet Lenora and see her apartment. It was a perfect little one bedroom with two day beds in the living room which served as couches during the day. It overlooked Broadway, and came complete with Cleo the cat.

We moved in January of 1996. We got there on Thursday, and after a thorough cleaning and going to the store for supplies, the guys left on Friday to fly away for a weekend gig. Thus, I was left on my own in a strange apartment in a strange city for three whole days. I was 56 years old, and had rarely been out of the hills of East Tennessee. The adventure had begun!


After we left the 99th Street apartment and came back to Tennessee, we yearned to go back to the city. John thomas had applied to attend the BMI/ Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop in New York City. It was at least a three year commitment, so he decided to go up and look for an apartment. In the meantime, Tommy was leading a retreat in a remote section of Ohio at a church camp. While he was there, a lady named Kathy came up to him and said she had heard that he was trying to move to New York. He told her that his son was there looking for a place. She told him that she and her husband had lived in Brooklyn for thirteen years. They had gone there to start a church and stayed. Just recently they had moved, and as far as she knew, their apartment was still empty. It was a large apartment in Brooklyn on the top floor of a townhouse. Alice, the owner, lived on the first floor. Kathy called her, and Tommy called John thomas. John thomas called Alice and they set up a meeting for the next day.

He caught the R train and rode into Brooklyn—about a forty five minute ride. The apartment was large and beautiful. Alice was being careful who she rented to because she was single. She was also a Christian, and was hoping for a Christian tenant. The apartment had three bedrooms, a large kitchen, a dining room and living room. Apartments of this size were unheard of in the city. It was sparkling clean, too. Tommy and I were going to move up there with John thomas so that they could keep traveling together on the weekends, so it was perfect.

A few weeks later, we moved to Brooklyn. We were there for a little over three years. We believe that God had a hand in helping us find our apartment and bringing us to Alice. We stayed friends and talked on the phone until she went to be with the Lord at the end of 2013. I hope that by reading these stories you can get a glimpse of why we fell in love with New York City and its people, and why, even though we do not live there full time, we are still fully in love!

Stories from 46th Street: 46th and 9th

When we decided to try to move to New York again, we had just gone up for a visit. While we were there, we went to see an old friend from the 99th Street apartment building. She had just had a baby, so we took her a gift. She asked us what we were doing in town, so we told her we were looking for a place. Why don’t you take mine? she asked.

We said, Oh! Are you moving?

She said that she wasn’t, but that she owned another apartment on 46th Street. Again, moving to New York seemed a piece of cake. We went to see it, fell in love and rented it. Unfortunately, our friend got a divorce about six months later and decided to sell the apartment, so we moved away from our beloved New York one more time.

New York’s Finest

(The Hampton Girls, Part 1)

The more I think about the story I am about to tell you, the more supernatural it becomes. Three of my friends, Ginger, Carol, and Marlene wanted to go to New York with me as their tour guide. We flew up on the same plane with two convicts in handcuffs, complete with their own escort. They were met at LaGuardia by one of the biggest men I have ever seen. He had to have weighed around 400 pounds.

We caught a cab to the apartment on 46th Street, and the adventure began. It was a great week, and we had many adventures, but there are three seemingly small things I especially want to tell to prove how a small thing can make a huge impact.

One day, the girls wanted to go to the South Street Seaport which is at the southern tip of Manhattan Island. Sometimes when I get off the train down there, I get turned around. I saw a couple of New York City’s Finest, and walked over to ask directions. The two cops were standing on the sidewalk talking to a third cop who was sitting in a car. When I got closer, I saw that the cop in the car was none other than the 400 pound cop from the airport. In a city of twelve million, what are the odds?


(The Hampton Girls, Part 2)

We had gone to get half price tickets for a Broadway show, but the TKTS booth in Times Square didn’t open until the afternoon. After 9/11, they opened a TKTS booth on Front Street close to the South Street Seaport to replace the one that was on the ground floor of the World Trade Center. When we used to get tickets in the Twin Towers, we were usually in line by 9 or 10am to get a good spot. I have often wondered what would have happened to us had we been there on that fateful day. If it had not been for the fact that we were in Tennessee for Tommy’s heart surgery, we very well might have been.

At any rate, we were standing in line on Front Street to get our tickets when the tallest cop I have ever seen walked up to me, took me by the hand (mine was dwarfed in hers), and said, Come with me!

I don’t know how you would have reacted, but I was nervous, even though I would never even spit on the street, much less commit a crime. However, my curiosity got the best of me. She started striding toward the ticket booth, which had not even opened yet, dragging me behind her. I looked back at Marlene, Ginger, and Carol standing there with wide eyed, gaping faces. At last, she reached the ticket booth, opened the door, and pushed me inside. I turned to her questioningly, and she said in a brusque voice, You want tickets, don’t you? Now you’re first in line!

Then she calmly walked away. So I bought our tickets and walked back outside, still in a state of shock. Only in New York!

By the way, while I was still in line, I looked in front of me, and there stood a former neighbor of mine who used to live across the street from me in Knoxville. Small world, right?

The Hatian Cabbie

(The Hampton Girls, Part 3)

This has been my hardest New York story to write. I don’t know why. It’s probably my favorite. Maybe because it was so surreal and, again, supernatural. Every time I tell this story, I break out in goose bumps and my heart starts racing. So, here goes!

It was Ginger, Carol, and Marlene’s last day in New York. I normally would catch a train and bus to the airport, but since we had so much luggage, I decided to call a car service. It’s expensive, but there were four of us, so it wouldn’t have been too much. We packed early so we could enjoy part of one last day in the city. Our car was to pick us up at 3:00. Our plane left at 6:30, so we could easily be at the airport by 4:00. We were on the sidewalk at 3:00. No car. 3:15, no car. At 3:30, I called. Oh, they said. We cancelled you. We left a message on your answering machine.

First of all, I had no answering machine. Secondly, we only came back to the apartment to pick up our luggage. I started to panic and hyperventilate. It’s almost rush hour! I pleaded. You have to send someone!

I might as well have been talking to a tree. It was obvious that Carmel Car Service Could Care Less. I hung up Ginger’s cell phone. By now there was a grid of cars on 9th avenue not going anywhere. I told the girls to pray like they had never prayed before. These three girls from the hills of East Tennessee looked at me as if to say, Why are you so upset? They started to pray, nonetheless.

I sent Ginger to 9th Avenue to try to get a cab, and I stayed on 46th Street. Most of the cabs had OUT OF SERVICE flashing on their signs. It was rush hour, for Pete’s sake (whoever Pete is)! Ginger walked back over and said one cab driver laughed at her and said she would never get a cab at rush hour. The heart rate went up yet again. I was standing on the south corner of 46th, so I walked over to the north corner. Just as I did, I saw a cab turn from 10th Avenue onto 46th. 46th is one way with two lanes of traffic, and he got in the left lane—the side I was standing on. My heart rate picked up again. He didn’t have an OUT OF SERVICE sign, and he didn’t have a passenger. I walked out into the street, and straight to his window. He rolled it down. Is there any way you can take us to the airport? I asked.

Get in, he said. We did. By this time it was 4:30. The girls got in back and I got in front with him.

I looked at him and said, The Lord sent you to us.

He looked back at me and said, I know. If you can believe it, my pulse quickened once more.

Then I said to him, "Is there any way

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