Friday, August 29, 2008

Dylan's Candy Bar: Photos This Time!

My book club again met at Dylan's Candy Bar, and I again devoured a delicious s'mores cupcake. The only difference this time is that I remembered to get out my camera!

I still can't decide if the stairway has real candy in it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Coney Island at Night

Like even the worst of county fairs, Coney Island looks much less dingy at night. As we walked by Astroland after the Huey Lewis concert Thursday night, the bright lights and neon signs transformed Coney Island into what I had always imagined it to be. If ever a hot dog joint could look magical, Nathan's was it.

Still a line!

The Cyclone: I would ride it again if I didn't want to move my neck for a week.

Coney Island's subway station: Almost classy

Friday, August 22, 2008

It's 1984 at Coney Island!

I can remember listening to only three cassette tapes in the car when I was a kid: the Pointer Sisters, Whitney Houston and Huey Lewis and the News.

And while the Pointer Sisters were my favorite, Huey Lewis came in a close second. So you can imagine I was pretty excited when Paul brought home a leaflet last month that said the group was playing for free last night as part of a summer concert series at a park near Coney Island.

We brought some beach towels to sit on and got there early enough to sit on a slight incline, so we had a good view of the stage. Hundreds of chairs were set up in front of us-- more than half were empty, I think-- for VIP's (whoever they were), so that was kind of annoying. But we had fun in the "cheap seats," where quite a few people were dancing and even more were singing along.

The concert started just the same way as the tape we always listened to in the car: a heartbeat thumping. Everyone cheered as the "The Heart of Rock and Roll" started: "New York, New York is everything they say, and no place that I'd rather be."

They played most of my favorites in about 90 minutes-- a childhood dream come true!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Things Sure Have Changed?

Last week marked the one-year anniversary of Paul being offered his job in New York. Hard to believe it's been that long.

We both flew to New York on a Thursday morning last August. I explored Times Square and Greenwich Village in sweltering heat while he had his interview. Less than 24 hours later he had a job offer.

I was going to write that things sure have changed since then, but really it's only me. The neighborhood is just as loud; I just don't notice it anymore. Mom and Dad are more likely than me to be bothered by the cars honking outside the window when I talk to them on the phone.

The late-night buses and trucks used to keep me up at night. No longer.

I used to hate walking to the grocery store and carrying our food back. Now I appreciate it. I always hated grocery shopping anyway, and since we have to buy less at one time that means we don't spend as long there.

Yes, the apartment is smaller than our house, but I don't mind that either. In fact, our apartment has more windows than the house does, and the large, long ledge in the living room allows me to sit in the window and people-watch two stories below.

It really came home to me how long we've been here when our landlord sent the paperwork to renew our lease for another year. We'll be here until at least the end of August 2009.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Our Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Car Experience

We still haven't sold our car, even though we keep saying we're going to. We're planning a road trip to Montreal over Labor Day weekend, so maybe after that.

In the meantime, we (i.e. Paul) must move the car every few days because of alternate side street sweeping. Each side of the street has 90 minutes set aside once a week for cleaning, and signs are posted telling drivers when they can't park there.

Last Thursday evening Paul parked in a spot that wouldn't be swept again until this morning. He got home from a beer club meeting (yes, you read that right) about midnight last night and went to move the car.

But he couldn't find it. We split up and scoured the streets for the Saturn, thinking maybe he didn't park it where he thought he did. No luck. Paul even tried pressing the car alarm button periodically in hopes of hearing, if not seeing, it.

We weren't able to find out if it was towed, and real people in city offices are hard to come by on the phone that late at night. So early this morning Paul made some calls and found out what happened.

Sometime after Paul parked the car last Thursday night, signs were displayed saying that the street would be under construction Wednesday and all cars must be moved. The street is only two blocks from our apartment, but we happened not to walk down it in the last week and never saw the signs.

So the car got towed to a nearby street in an illegal parking spot. Our car then proceeded to get a ticket at 7:55 this morning, less than an hour before a police officer told Paul by phone the location of our car.

Paul found out from a coworker that we can dispute the ticket online, which we definitely will be doing.

And that's why you shouldn't bring a car to New York City.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Photos from the 50's

Take the subway to 50th St./Rockefeller Center and you can see a half-dozen major sites within a few blocks of each other. It was a beautiful day in New York on Saturday, so we visited a few yet again.

W. 53rd St: Museum of Modern Art

The museum recently opened an exhibit on prefabricated homes, which I found both interesting and oddly funny. In addition to scale models of homes inside the museum, a few life size homes were erected in an adjoining lot.

They weren't your typical subdivision houses. One seemed like a beach house. Another was something like 150-square-feet. Another had all windows for walls and I believe was solar-powered.

E. 51st St: St. Patrick's Cathedral

We tend to go to mass here when we're in the area Saturday evenings. The priest has a lovely Irish accent, although his sermon has to compete with my wandering eyes taking in the architecture. Around Christmas we could barely find a seat. Nowadays, however, you can walk in a few minutes late and still get a pew toward the side.

Across from St. Patrick's, on Fifth Avenue: Statue of Atlas

We had some time before church started, so we stopped by the statue of Atlas directly across the street. Although I'd known of the statue before, it became permanently etched into my brain since I started watching "30 Rock." The opening credits feature something like this:

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Paul's Twin?

It seems that all I've done since Friday is watch the Olympics.

And since Michael Phelps is shown on TV approximately every seven seconds, it seems that all I've really done is look at Paul.

I first noticed the resemblance between Paul and the record-breaking swimmer four years ago during the Athens Olympics. A few photos of Phelps as a child were shown on TV a couple of nights ago, and they look even more like Paul.

I'm obviously not the only one who thinks they very possibly could be one and the same person.

Today Paul forwarded me an email from one of his former co-workers. It was originally sent to about a dozen people and included one line and a photo:

"Paul's been busy in China!"

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The Bridges of Kings County

The Brooklyn Bridge is the queen of New York City bridges, and for good reason.

You can see one of the most beautiful sights in the entire city for a $2 subway fare-- ride the train across the nearby Manhattan Bridge at sunset and watch the reds, yellows and pinks reflect against the Brooklyn Bridge and the skyscrapers of lower Manhattan, with the Statue of Liberty gleaming in the distance.

But my second favorite bridge is closer to home: the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge. It connects the Bay Ridge/Fort Hamilton neighborhoods (and Brooklyn in general) to Staten Island. The Shore Road Promenade is about a 15 minute walk from our apartment and runs along the bay and under the bridge.

Paul regularly uses the promenade to train for the marathon, and we'll often take a walk along the water together. We also have taken many of our guests there. You get a great view of the Verrazano in one direction and lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty in the other direction.

Needless to say, I've taken many a photo of the bridge. I've posted a few, but not all. Here's a collection of the best:

Shore Road Promenade, with the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in the background.

Underneath the bridge.

The bridge at sunset.

A little bit closer ...

And even closer.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Teeny Tiny Teany

On Saturday we had planned to continue our international culinary adventure around New York, but nothing sounded quite right.

We flirted with Argentina or Brazil but couldn't find a recommendation we could agree on. I looked into a few Belgian restaurants but decided to go for brunch some day when I could get a waffle.

In the end, we decided to try Teany. It's not ethnic, but it was an adventure all the same.

We first heard of the restaurant at Little Cupcake. Paul sometimes gets the Teany-brand bottled tea, and it's really yummy. The back of the bottle said the Teany cafe was co-owned by the singer Moby and located in the Lower East Side. We were intrigued.

The cafe not only has 98 kinds of loose-leaf tea, but also vegetarian food and vegan desserts. I even said goodbye to my normal glass of water for the night in favor of the Red Cooler - a blend of raspberry and mint teas and cranberry juice. Tasty.

For my meal, I choose the turkey club (with vegetarian turkey and bacon). It's not many places you can get a sandwich on pumpernickel bread.

The cafe earns its name in another way, too. It really is teeny tiny. The place holds about 20 patrons, tops, and that would be crowded. The "kitchen" was just a corner of the room and was probably smaller than the one in our apartment.

It's probably not the type of place I would eat every week-- or even every month-- but it was fun for a change. It also gave us a chance to walk around the neighborhood a bit. I'd been there once by myself, when Paul was in Columbus in April and I made a run for cupcakes. But it was dark then, and on Saturday we could actually look around.

The Lower East Side is the hip place to live in the city nowadays. It used to be quite sketchy, but now all the 20-somethings are moving in, along with nice restaurants and stores. If I had to compare it to a Columbus neighborhood, I would say it's closest to Clintonville with a dash of the Short North.

And yes, I forgot to take pictures yet again.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...