Madison Square Park
Work was refrigerated today and it felt good to leave the office a couple of minutes after 6:00 p.m. and head down to 23rd Street to go to the dojo. I had a few minutes to kill before black belt class so I took a short stroll through Madison Square Park to take pictures.
A few years ago Madison Square Park was dumpy and rat-infested but it has since been renovated very nicely. The picture above is of the Shake Shack, a very popular shack where they sell shakes, hot dogs, burgers, and so forth. I haven't gotten any food there before but I plan to, because I've heard it's very good. You can see from the photo that they've got brisk business on a hot summer night like tonight.
There was a free summer concert going on in the park and people were starting to gather on the grass. It sounded like the band was doing a sound check.
This is a picture of the top of the Empire State Building, with the top of a fountain in the foreground.
I shot a few more pictures and then started walking to the dojo. The smell of hot dogs from the Shake Shack was making me hungry. I vowed to return to this fine shack.
Black Belt class was excellent as always.
While I was at the dojo I reserved a place on the bus to Far Rockaway early Sunday morning for beach training. Beach training is an annual event where all the black belts gather on Rockaway Beach in Queens before sunrise.
We meditate as the sun rises, and then have a group workout. At about 8:30 a.m. the colored belts arrive and there is another group workout. Then we have a picnic and a day at the beach. In all, several hundred people show up. It's an interesting experience and a lot of fun.
Of course, getting out to Rockaway before 4:30 a.m. is a bit of a challenge. Last year I had a car to drive, but this year I don't. It's called Far Rockaway for a reason. It's way out there. I could take the A train, but I would be on the subway almost 90 minutes or more and I might get mugged. Yes, I'm a black belt going to a karate event but I don't want to risk ironic death. The dojo has chartered a bus, all I need to do is get to the dojo by 3:30 a.m. That and twelve bucks. Shouldn't be too difficult. I'll take the A train back from the beach.
I left the dojo and came home. Now Jenn and I are both working on our computers but I think we're just about done for the night.