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A Face in the Crowd

It never feels like NYC until you see the ESB


Gateway to one of the greatest avenues in the world; it’s always a bit of a thrill to walk from Washington Sq to Central Park down Fifth


Where you went before Amazon


Getting newer

Despite the fact that we were both hugely fatigued, we had
arrived in NYC and as such left our bags and embarked on a trek immediately.  We took the subway downtown, then walked the West
Village, Greenwich Village, and took lunch in a nice French bistro.  Afterwards over towards NYU, Washington
Square, Union Square, and all the way up Fifth Avenue to midtown.  I think at least a 12 km walk.  I was more than ready for a siesta.

For dinner we took the subway down to the East Village.  I remember the EV in 1981 being a haunted
house; it was riddled with graffiti and drug addicts and you never knew what
you would encounter around the next corner.
It was actually terrifying on the dimly lit side-streets after dark.  Now it’s rather tame.  We went to Calliope, a place we’d read about
in the New Yorker, on East 4th north of Houston.  We didn’t have a reservation and they were
booked but they gave us a place at the bar.
We got there early, around seven (two hours earlier than south American
dinner time!) and the place packed out fast.
By eight every table was booked, there were people waiting, and it was
two deep at the bar.  Incredible dinner:
A lovely salad to start, gorgeous poached halibut in beurre blanc, a
spectacular rabbit stuffed with leeks, carrot and wrapped in bacon on a lentil
stew, and a rhubarb tart to finish.
Amazing.  I told the chef he
should serve the rabbit dish with a straw.
Exquisite: Rabbit stuffed with carrot and leek, wrapped in bacon, on a lentil stew


Halibut poached in beurre blanc


Although we both could have crashed then and there NYC is
too exciting to give in, so we took the subway back to midtown then walked in
and around Times Square before returning to the hotel.
Lights on Broadway


Up early and out the door Friday and it was, yes, raining.  Not sprinkling, good old fashioned Vancouver pouring rain.  With wind.  Any remnant of my tan peeled off immediately.  We decided given the weather to visit the MOMA; it’s been about 20 years since I was there and of course it’s had a complete reno.  We arrived to find every tourist in midtown was doing the same.  We lined up, and lined up, and lined up.



Line-up, from halfway down the block in the rain, to buy tickets to get in


Mandatory coat-check line; I put my hotel umbrella in a public box and hoped for the best
Line up for the cafe
Lining up to look at, and take a picture of, Starry Night


Brown Thrasher with its young; photo from 1941



Inspiration to many


Inspiration to many


The Jackson Pollock no one was looking at


Model for a pavillion in Seville


Rem Koolhaas’ (author of Delirious New York, the most stolen book at U of T in the 1980s) design for a Dutch house


1937 photo of a Northumbrian miner taking dinner


Dots.  From a distance they made the shape of a face.  Art, as Warhol said, is what you can get away with.


We were just there.

After the museum and lunch we popped into the Bloomingdale’s flagship on Lexington and 59th then went downtown to window shop.  The rain had turned to a sprinkle, so all was not lost.

Just what I was looking for


Hard to decipher, but it is a puppy Collie in a pet shop window, asleep on paper shreds.  And you would have bought it on the spot.


Chess shop.


James Bond chess set


I saw it in Buenos Aires: I said buy low, sell high


The C in ABC Carpets: Chickalicious


Laboratory Kitchen (my idea in 1987…)


Un-parallel parking


Purse. Keyboard. Multifunctional.


I kid you not: These were in the men’s department at Bloomingdale’s.

The author of Here Hare has traveled to over 45 countries on six continents, and has lived in Canada, the UK and Australia.

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