This weekend we had a lot of adventures. First, we visited the Highline. This is an old elevated rail line that has been converted into a park. They're not finished yet, but what has been finished is lovely. The only thing that might be said negative is that the surrounding area, the Meat Packing district, is, well, a meat packing district, complete with warehouses that are less than beautiful. On the other side of the Highline is Chelsea, which takes pride in the rough edges and unfinished look of its neighborhood. This rough look doesn't come with a low price, oh no. We stopped in at a complex next to the Highline to see what they had (curiousity, really). Their Flex 2 (which means a one bedroom with an area that could be turned into a second, smaller room) start at $6K a month. For rentals. With nothing but warehouses surrounding it.
Some people are so crazy they just love throwing their money away.
The end of the finished part of the Highline is fenced off, and I could see plants all lined up ready to be put into place. I could also spot some buildings that were most certainly NOT $6K a month. Our urban planning friend told us that the area has constant struggles with people wanting to build newer fancier buildings and people wanting to keep the less picturesque places.
We walked around the area once we'd seen the Highline. I took pictures on the move, though I did stop and rest while E went into the Apple store. I played around with the functions on my G9, taking a few shots with color select.
After our morning adventures, we spent some time resting and doing normal house hold stuff. Then it was time for our next bit of fun, and this time a lot more out of our comfort zone. We met up with our urban planer friend and his girlfriend and they took us to Brooklyn. First, we took the red line down rather far south in Manhattan. Then it turned out the line we needed, the J, was closed at that stop, so we had to take a blue line train one stop north. Let me tell you, that next stop was like something out of the NYC of the 70s. It was nasty, dirty, filthy and run down, and to top it off, it smelled like piss (being pregnant, I get all kinds of lovely extra strong smelling experiences). BUT, the train took us over a bridge so we got a great view of Manhattan and Brooklyn. Our first destination was an amazing but tiny place called Moto. This place might have been 500 square feet, shaped in a triangle, but the seating was in a V that that a bar was set at the wide end of the room. A three man band was playing amazing Jazz with a trumpet, string thing that sounded like a bass but looked like a broom handle with a string tucked into a bucket, and something that looked like a brass clarinet but sounded more like a saxiphone. This place was indescrible, though I will try. The lights were like dim shop lights. The walls were unrefined, exposed brick and cracked looking plaster. The bathroom was like some thing I'd expect to find in a developing country- the faucets were mismatched- one looked like a hose spicket. The tank for the toilet was up high- it took me a while to find the flush handle. The brick near the bathroom had a repeating poem etched into with white pen...something about seeing a man who wasn't there again today, and wasn't there yesterday, but I wish he'd go away. It was an effect to be sure.
The food was another matter. It was quite simply amazing, and not as expensive as you'd pay for the same in Manhattan. Their take on Mac and Cheese didn't have a touch of cheddar to it, but O.M.G that was good. I got meatloaf and potatoes and both were delish. The only down side is that apparently most places in Brooklyn are cash only places, and E and I are used to not carrying cash. Thankfully there was an ATM around the corner.
This area of Brooklyn that we went to is still "gentrifying" which means that it's really authentically rough around the edges. We never felt at all uncomfortable, but then again, we were four people, two of whom were big strapping fellas. We walked probably about a mile to our next destination. The walk was like a scene from a movie featuring 70's NYC. The only thing out of place were the Hasidic Jews (the ones who wear black and hats and have beards and curly locks as sideburns) sitting around smoking outside of their apartment. They were only out of place because when you think of people loitering at 11pm at night outside of apartments, you don't think of Hasidic Jews.
Just when I thought I was going to have to start whining "are we there yet" we reached our next goal. This place is called Barcade- a bar that has the old 25 cent arcade games lined against the wall. It was LOUD, it was CROWDED and I instantly hated it. But I gave E 5 quarters (all I had) and he had a blast. Once the two guys played their quarters out, we were homeward bound.
That was the first time in a very very long time that I've rolled into home past midnight. Overall a great night.
Sunday was all about resting, because we were totally wiped out from our adventurous day on Saturday.