New York City Diary

Words and pictures from my interesting life in New York.

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Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Central Park Sandwiches

Today was a hot day, and tonight is a hot night. It's 83 degrees Fahrenheit at 10:20 p.m. in Brooklyn. Jenn and I are home, and the air conditioner is on.

Work today was extremely air conditioned. Stepping out for lunch was a drastic change in temperature all of a sudden. Wham! It really hit you in the face.

I worked until about 6:15 p.m. and then met Marty for a beer. We met on the corner of 57th and Broadway. He took a crosstown bus because he works on East 57th or 58th, something like that.

I got to the corner first and while I was waiting for him, I vaguely noticed somebody making a lot of noise at the nearby pay phone, like a rattling, scraping noise.

Just a moment after my internal freak alert system started humming, a guy from the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) who stands on the corner and counts buses (don't ask me) started yelling at the guy, saying "Hey, you there, quit trying to rob the phone!" and "I'm going to call the cops on you right now!"

The guy stepped away from the phone to where I could see him. He was a straggly street person holding a length of thick wire. He had obviously been trying to somehow snag quarters from the pay phone. And he didn't look particularly disturbed by this city employee threatening to call the cops on him. He just slowly ambled across 57th Street, grinning.

As he stepped off the curb, the MTA guy yelled again "Next time, I'm calling the cops on you!"

To which the street guy replied "You probably don't even know the number."

I laughed to myself. Then Marty arrived.

I asked Marty if he was hungry and he said yes, and since we were both trying not to spend too much money, we went into the Associated/Morton Williams supermarket right on 57th (where I saw Randy Johnson that one time) and we bought pre-made sandwiches to eat in the park. We both chose roast beef with fancy cheese. Mine was on wheat bread and Marty's was in a tortilla wrap.

Then we walked into Central Park at the Columbus Circle entrance and sat down on a bench on the sidewalk along Park Drive. It was still hot but in the evening shade it was comfortable.

It must have been about 6:45 p.m. because at first there was vehicle traffic on Park Drive and then suddenly there wasn't. It's much, much nicer without vehicle traffic, of course. Just walkers, runners, rollerbladers, bikers, and other assorted perambulators, enjoying the summer evening in the city.

The sandwiches were excellent. We ate them and talked for a few minutes and checked out all the people going by. I took this picture of where we were sitting. It's facing south. If you could see through the trees, straight ahead would be Columbus Circle and Central Park South.

From there we walked to McGee's bar and had one Pilsner Urquell each. A fine, crisp beer it was. I look especially creepy in this action shot on the left because the camera's "Nightshot Plus" feature was turned on and it makes everybody look weird. I'm not actually a vampire, not in that shirt.

Marty wanted to catch the 8:34 p.m. Long Island Rail Road train to Wantaugh so we left and got on a downtown W train at 55th. He got off at 34th and went to Penn Station and I stayed on and transferred at Union Square to an L train to Brooklyn. And here I am, relaxing with Jenn and blogging. A perfectly nice Tuesday night in New York.


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