Well that was an interesting weekend. It was rainy and windy last night but that was the extent of the storm. My friend stayed with me this weekend and we had a fun weekend - grabbing brunch with some friends before the rain started, a walk to East River Park, pre-hurricane happy hour at Enids, a night in with lots of movies, a walk around the neighborhood to check out the damage (only one big felled tree in McCarren Park), and finally a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge. There was only one large gust of wind that nearly knocked us over but otherwise it was a perfect walk with gorgeous views of the city and a lovely sunset.
This weekend I'll likely be huddled in my apartment with the cat waiting out a frickin' hurricane. A hurricane in Brooklyn! Insanity. In the last year there's been a tornado in Park Slope, a freak blizzard, an earthquake, and now a hurricane. Kind of hilarious. Kind of scary.
The storm's not supposed to hit until Sunday but there will be plenty of high winds and rain tomorrow. Thankfully, today's been pretty gorgeous and I'm taking advantage of the weather while I can.
Tonight is the last music and movie screening at The City Reliquary. There will be a screening of the documentary Heavy Metal Parking Lot as well as a pie baking contest judged by the lovely ladies from Saltie. There will also be lots of bourbon on hand to celebrate the beginning of the end of the world (just kidding). Admission to the event is a suggested donation of $7 and pie is going for $3 a slice along with some ice-cream and coffee. A sugar high and caffeine rush sounds like the perfect way to start off the weekend.
"...This generation emphasizes the basics: great fabrics, aggressive tailoring, thoughtful accessorizing. It’s a return to style as a source of dignity, a theme that has run through generations of black American style, from Reconstruction to the Harlem Renaissance to the civil rights era to the mixed messages of the hip-hop era.
“I used to wear size 42 jeans,” Mr. Kissi said. “Coming from that to a tie and shirt, people perceive you in a whole different way.”"
Saturday afternoon we headed down to Prospect Heights for the Brooklyn Based event on Vanderbilt. We met up with a couple friends who live in the neighborhood and did some bar hopping. Hot Bird was one of the businesses participating in the event and I loved it. The space was once used as an old auto repair shop and is now a spacious bar and eatery complete with some great outdoor space and ton of beers on tap. They also make a great Old Fashioned.
Later that evening we met up with Jon and Lisa (who got engaged last weekend!!!) and went into the city for dinner at Nizza. It's an Italian restaurant and they offer an extensive gluten-free menu. The food was delicious and the prices were very reasonable. They also had two different kind of goat cheese on the menu so Jon was in heaven.
Sunday we met up with some friends in Williamsburg for brunch at The Lovin Cup. Their brunch menu has a lot of different choices and they offer some strong and tasty drinks (Pimm's Cups for our friends, some gin, hot sauce, cucumber, and lime concoction for Jon). I had the shrimp and grits. Our friend Joe went for the chicken and waffles. Their buttermilk biscuits were delicious and freshly baked.
Later that evening we headed down to DUMBO to meet up with one of Jon's friends at Superfine. This place was great. There's a small stage in the front of the restaurant and we got to hear some great country-tinged music from a trio on tour from Austin, Texas. They have a limited menu that seems to change daily but everything that we ordered was really good. I also had some cherry cocktail that was awesome.
Thankfully, after all this eating and drinking, Jon and I were able to find some time to run a few miles in the neighborhood. It started raining but it actually made the fun more fun. Also, rain with a little bit of a chill is preferable to hot and humid like it had been earlier in the day. At least it is for me.
It was a short visit but we managed to see a lot of our friends and have some good quality time together. Less than two weeks until the next visit. Ah, the joys of a long distance relationship.
So, I used to be a runner. Not a great runner but a runner nonetheless. The picture from above was before The Flying Feather 4 Miler in Columbus. I remember being really nervous the night before but I ended up finishing strong and at a pretty decent pace (9:27 - great for me!) and was rewarded with a medal and a bottle of wine at the end of the race.
Right around that time I had started experiencing some pain in my shins. It would hurt when I started a run but the pain would eventually go away. I chalked it up to shin splints and didn't think it to be too serious until one morning I woke up and could barely walk down the stairs to get the morning coffee going. I made an appointment and saw a sports medicine doc and eventually had to have a bone scan. The result - bilateral stress fractures. This was due to a combination of too much running and being fitted for the wrong shoes. I had to stop running, had a couple months of PT, and have since been scared of injuring myself in the same way.
I have tried to stay active (gym, biking, yoga, DVD's at home) but nothing has really replaced the feeling that I get from running. I've had a few short stints trying to get back into it, but every time I felt that familiar soreness I got scared and stopped. I've decided that I'm going to get back into it.
I remember the first time I ran over five miles and the sense of accomplishment that came with it. I remember the chill of fall cooling me down as I chugged along through my old neighborhood, running by landmarks I had only passed previously in my car. I remember the exhilaration of flying down High Street feeling like I could run on and on.
I want to feel that way again. I'm going to start running but am going to be smarter about it this time. I'm not going to try and run through the pain. I'm going to listen to my body, to cross train appropriately, and to build up my mileage slowly. I decided to write about here because I'm hoping it will make me accountable and will push me to go for a run when it feels like that's the last thing I want to do. Two miles down yesterday. Two and half for tomorrow.
View from the Manhattan Bridge - heading to Summer Streets
Saturday morning I woke up as early as I could manage, hopped on my bike, and headed for Manhattan to take part of this year's Summer Streets. It was a surreal experience to ride up and down Lafayette and Park Avenue with no cars and only fellow bikers and pedestrians.
Some of what I saw:
On the Brooklyn Bridge heading home.
It was a great day for biking and the 22+ miles on the bike felt like a cakewalk due to the sheer exhilaration of riding in the city with no cars in sight. If you missed this past weekend's event not to worry - this Saturday it will be happening again, but it's the last time so go out and ride if you can!
The oppressive heat and humidity has finally lifted and it feels like the season is slowly starting to turn. This is magical biking weather for me – cooler temperatures and light breezes. I’m looking forward to a very bike heavy weekend and plan on biking to nearly everything I do this weekend.
Tonight, the City Reliquary will be presenting yet another installment of their Friday Night Lights music and movie screenings. The Internationals will be performing before the screening of Coming to America. (I have a soft spot for this movie. Most recently due to Jon’s expert overdubbing from one of the scenes when we attending the opening party for the Museum of the Moving Image.)
“The 2011 route connects the Brooklyn Bridge with Central Park, with recommended spurs along low-traffic streets to the Hudson River Greenway, Harlem and Governors Island, allowing participants to plan a route as long or short as they wish.”
From the Brooklyn Bridge all the way up to East 72nd street via Lafayette St and Park Ave, the streets will be closed to cars and other motorized vehicles until 1pm. There are various rest points along the route that will be offering water, snacks, fitness classes, as well as live music and a double-dutch demonstration. Also, Andy from the Self-Portrait Project will be at the Foley Square Rest Stop doing his thing.
This month’s event is a special one as it is part of this year’s Couch Crash NYC. What a Couch Crash? From their website:
“A Couch Crash is an event organized by CS members from a specific geographical location and is usually held yearly. Local members organize 3 or more days full of events. These events usually include city tours, picnics, house-parties, hiking, bike-tours, sightseeing and so on. During these events, local members host the couchsurfers that are coming from other places. In many cases, people travel to another country to attend one of these events.”
“CouchSurfing seeks to internationally network people and places, create educational exchanges, raise collective consciousness, spread tolerance and facilitate cultural understanding.
As a community we strive to do our individual and collective parts to make the world a better place, and we believe that the surfing of couches is a means to accomplish this goal.
CouchSurfing is not about the furniture, not just about finding free accommodations around the world; it’s about making connections worldwide. We make the world a better place by opening our homes, our hearts, and our lives. We open our minds and welcome the knowledge that cultural exchange makes available. We create deep and meaningful connections that cross oceans, continents and cultures.
CouchSurfing wants to change not only the way we travel, but how we relate to the world!”
If you are interested, go to the Couchsurfers’ website to sign up to become part of this international network of travelers and hosts. This year’s list of Couch Crash NYC events can be found here.
Some other events that I think are worth mentioning.
“What do you get when you mix the infamous Dumpster Pools, the fervor of an open air dance party, the delicacy of summer cocktails (think: real coconut), and the lawless beauty of a night lit by fire? This is your summer made exquisitely out-of-control.
3rd Ward, Macro-Sea, Artists Wanted, TheDanger and Chashama have spent the past several weeks building out a fantastic oasis in the creative heart of Queens. A couple blocks from PS1, we are opening The Palms, a late summer ode to the Boca Raton Resort Pools of the 1940's (with more music, spectacle and hedonism).”
The Palms offers 15,000 sqft of outdoor enjoyment, cabanas and bar and 4,300 sqft of indoor lounging. They are open Saturday from noon to “much, much later” and Sunday from noon to midnight. Admission is $10 before 3pm on Saturday, $20 after 3pm. On Sunday admission is $10 all day. I’m definitely intrigued and will try to stop by at some point this weekend. Whether it’s Saturday or Sunday remains to be seen.
This is part of the Martin Luther King Concert Series. They recommend that you get there as early as possible as the lines are “notoriously long and slow” (their words, not mine). This concert is definitely going to be jam packed. The show starts at 7:30pm. Go here for information and directions.