17 March 2008

Playing in Traffic

"You'd be better off playing marbles on the freeway than messin' around with me, pal."
~my father, frequently in my childhood

I love New York City. I love the crowds, the insanity, the fact that any and everywhere you go, there are 30,000 other people doing the same thing as you. I love the hustle, the small stores, the unbelievable traffic, the lines to do anything. I love it that the longer my sister lives there, the more familiar I become with the Brooklyn neighborhoods, the fact that I recognize names like Nostrand, Atlantic & Throop (Avenues), Bed-Sty (a geographic region). I have no sense of direction, so I still get lost. I expcet that this will be my fate my entire life, though, and don't stress overmuch about it. Whenever I'm with my sister, I simply follow her about, trusting in her excellent sense of direction and intimate knowledge of her own neighborhood.

Leaving either of my sisters behind to return home when I visit them is difficult. I feel each time as if some vital part of myself has been cut off, left bleeding and wounded, a pain that I fear sometimes will never heal. I spend so much time laughing when I'm with them, that perhaps it isn't all that odd that I feel such melancholy upon leaving them behind.

This was a super-short visit. I arrived in the big city late on Friday afternoon, rather than early in the morning as planned due to my own stupid fuck-up. I'd rather not admit to teh internets at large that I missed my 06.25 AM flight, so let's move on, shall we?

After visiting my sister's office, we went 'home' to Brooklyn, where we ate dinner at an Italian place my sister and her friends frequent enough that the host knows them by name, and caters to their preferences. The wine, the food, the company and the conversation were all very much to my liking.

We slept late on Saturday. Since I'd been up at 4 AM on Friday in order to miss my early morning flight, I was too tired to party and rock it out on Friday night. When we got up, we took a bike ride to my sister's old neighborhood, where it is my considered opinion that perhaps some of the best bagels in the world are baked. After a delightful breakfast, I tortured my sister by touring a yarn store on Atlantic Ave, called Knit-a-way, where I spent far too much money on yarns that are lovely enough to eat. Witness the color spectacle....

I took this pic with my phone. Not bad for a pic from a mobile phone, no? See how the yarn is organized by color? Feel how soothing it is when everything is color-coded and organized by size? Ahhhhh. It appeals to an obsessive's heart, it does.

We rode the bikes through miles and miles of city streets. If you are my mother, you shouldn't read the next paragraph....(hi Mom! *waves*)

My sister is a pretty fearless lady. Not much intimidates her, but we left Atlantic Avenue behind at one point, because, as she told me, "You're making me nervous. You're going to get hit by a car." This coming from the child for whom the term "kamikaze skier" was invented. I'm small-town enough that I'm pretty unaware of the traffic, and was therefore nearly killed on several occasions, just from watching where I was going and not who was behind me. Oops.

We had a small dinner party on Saturday night, where I cooked for a gaggle of my sister's friends. Paper-wrapped fish, a green salad, rice, for the main course, and shrimp cocktail and prosciutto-wrapped goat-cheese as appetizers....yummy. With several bottles of wine, of course.

Sunday, I left to head home, sobbing my way through the cab ride to the airport. 'Exhausted' does not even begin to describe how tired I was; my bed called loud and clear when I finally got back to Oh-hia-ia.

Sleep, and more sleep, and yet a little more, is on the agenda for the next few days. And a visit to the massotherapist; my back is KILLING me from the bike-riding.

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