Twice a year, I go to New York to visit my mother, and I’m blessed to have a job that allows me the time to do that. This holiday season, since I’m working remotely, I decided to head up early to: 1) give my Mom extra time with me and her grandson Chester; 2) I hate that road trip up, and since I had an opportunity to get it out of the way, I thought I’d do so. It’s like the needle at the doctor’s office.
I was pleased to see that my CoSP compadre Michelle was in NYC and looking to hook up (as in get together) with people from CoSP. Introverted as I am, I love socializing with other happy singles, so I came a-running.
The trip was a nice combo of alone time and social time. I hopped the New Jersey Transit, my favorite mode of transportation, into New York City. I brought books with me, but I was content to stare at the window into the wilds of northern New Jersey. Lots of two-story homes with large backyards and pools, as well as some less privileged areas, but all are good for visual story.
I got into Hoboken at about 4:30, and I’m always reminded of Marlon Brando’s classic, On the Waterfront. After walking around the waterfront and taking in some picturesque views of the Hudson River, I walked around and got a hankering to check out Carlos’s Bakery from that old Cake Boss show, just for the photo opp. And, of course, I had to stock up on pastries, including the New York staple known as the cannoli.
After hopping the PATH train to Christopher Street, I did my routine of the pizza slice and street hot dog, must-dos once I’m in New York. It had gotten dark, but the Village is fun at night. Always good for people-watching. I had time to kill before meeting Michelle, so I got a ginger tea at Joe and the Juice and engaged in two more of my favorite pastimes, reading and writing. Emma has been a slog, but I’m enjoying Charles Blow’s memoir, Fire Shut Up in My Bones. Journaling has always been therapeutic, but I’m finding it more helpful to do it in a marble composition book than on a Word document. It feels more natural. I also liked this classic typewriter:
I met Michelle at the Four Points Sheraton just as she was checking in, and we walked around the Village and Soho in search of delectable yet affordable cuisine (a hard find in lower Manhattan). Finally, it came down to a choice between a pizza place and an Indian restaurant. When we checked out the Indian restaurant, we realized it was called “Taco Mahal” as opposed to “Taj Mahal.” A place that fuses tacos and Indian food? Ummmmmm, yes!
We were able to find seats in a tiny patio near some heat lamps (but with wobbly chairs). The taco was enough to satiate me with the hot dog and pizza slice I had gorged on earlier, but I still had to have my cannoli. Michelle and I also shared a cookie.
Since we’re both academics, much of our conversation steered toward the craziness that pervades both of our professions, and we also talked about growing up in the New York suburbs (it turns out she knows my second cousin, who taught social studies at her high school for over thirty years). And some small talk about food and our various travels.
After we parted ways, I headed back to Hoboken, which brought me back to my 20s, which were spent wandering Manhattan and Hoboken. I was pretty much in a fog as I rode back in Suffern, but it was a pleasant one. With CoSPers, they always are.
My name is Craig. I'm an educator, writer, and unapologetic singleton. When not reading, writing, or teaching, I enjoy hiking, running, watching movies, going to concerts, spending time with friends, and playing with my cat/son, Chester.