We went to breakfast at Pain Quotidein, right across from Bryant Park. You can order a bread basket with several types, butter and jams. It was interesting to taste all the different kinds; the coffee was pretty bad. From there we started walking downtown and a little east—down Lexington. I wanted to stop in at Kalustyan’s market and we did. They have every conceivable Indian spice or dried legume or jarred chutney or candy or dried fruit and a bunch of other “hard to find” ingredients. I could have stayed for an hour but Ken was quickly bored so I just bought some smoked sea salt and some incense and we were on our way.
Next stop was ABC carpet and home, an amazing store, where I had been before. I love to look at their linens in honor of my sister. Here’s a snap shot for you, Pat.
Just about a block farther downtown is Union Square. We wandered through the vegetable, flower, meat and cheese stalls. Lots of pumpkins were for sale, and apples and mums were everywhere—definitely a Fall scene.
We sat in Union Square Park for a while observing the cool and the crazy in abundance.
Took this of a great looking fire station:
Then we started to cross town to the West Village to meet some family at Morandi. We got there about a half hour early for our 1:30 lunch reso so we sat in a tiny park right across the street. There were two volunteers there tending the garden and we talked to them about their labor of love maintaining the little oasis of natural beauty in the middle of the city.
I haven’s seen my cousin Diane in, at least, 40 years. As we walked into the restaurant I looked around and didn’t see anyone who looked remotely familiar. I went to the bathroom where there was a short line. As I looked at back of the woman in front of me I knew it was Diane! I just said “hello” and she turned around and we hugged. I cried a lot through the lunch. It was so touching and wonderfully memorable to connect with her. Her husband, daughter, son in law and 85 year old aunt (who is also my cousin, Jane) came too. We finally got seated in the very noisy restaurant, all shared a bottle of Prosecco and a nice lunch. The food was fine but the company was priceless. We asked Jane some questions about the past. She is an amazingly modest woman and a wealth of information about other artists and the NY scene in the Bohemian days. After lunch, Diane, her husband, Fran, Ken and I took a cab up to 57th street to the gallery where Jane has 3 paintings hanging. We are all huge fans of her work and it was a thrill to see them on display.
They walked us back to 42nd Street where they got the subway and we came back to our hotel for a little rest.
We had tickets for the play “Time Stands Still” starring Laura Linney. We sat in the second row. I was totally engrossed in the play but I found it depressing and just a little TOO real for an evenings entertainment. The acting was totally mind blowing. At one point Laura Linney sits at the edge of the stage, staring out, obviously remembering something. You see her face go from passive to sad to teary, in a minute, maybe even less, right in front of you.
To lift our mood afterwards, we went to the bar in the hotel and had a drink and snack. Came back to the room just in time to catch the 9th inning of the Giants winning the pennant over the Phillies.


Saturday in the Big Apple — 3 Comments

  1. Jan,
    I love this city and your blog is delightful. I get to see things from someone else’s eyes. Great fun. I am working near the union square market and have been taking it for granted.

  2. Jan, what a simply full and fabulous day. Such a variety of things you experienced in just one day! Wow. Love all the family meetings and stories and your description of the play and the range of emotions. Truly a NYC magical day.

  3. I don’t know what prompted me to check in with your blog tonight, but I did and found out that we were both at ABC today. How weird it would have been if we had run into each other! I’m glad that the weather has been so cooperative – it makes a visit that much nicer.