New York. Manhattan. Saturday, noon. Cold. Start walking. Lower East Side. Bridge in sight. Tempted to walk across. Walk across. Learn later that it is Williamsburg br. Cross over into Brooklyn. Get lost immediately. Wander around. Come across a very religious neighborhood. Religious schools. Very pious. Very religious. Elders, kids, everyone, dressed in traditional wear. Feeling terribly lost- as no outsiders around. Huge enclave- takes 30 min to walk across.
Find a local coffee/donut shop. Ah- respite from cold. Strike up conversation with fellow patron. Enquire about religious enclave- learn that they are very orthodox, followers of hasidic faith. Coffee and donut- $ 1.35. Get directions to Brooklyn Br. (to get back into Manhattan).
45 min more walking. Manhattan br. in sight. Fumble around to find pedestrian entrance. 15 min pass. Finally on bridge. Walk contently. Mental calculations on how many miles walked, based on the rate 3-3.5 miles/hr. Satisfied with the resulting number- thoughts of mild grandeur.
Land smack in the middle of chinatown. Wander. Gradual loss of direction. East/west? Look for landmarks. Wander into more populous parts of chinatown. Lots of restaurants. Fish market. Meat market. Fascinated by the amazing array of dead/alive animals/reptiles/amphibians. Stacked animal parts - in different stages of preparedness. Something resembling the liver of a small bird- chicken? Buckets and buckets of really healthy, live, frogs staring. Stare back in disbelief. Medium sized turtles, live. Some spongy looking sea-being. Squids. A proactive salesperson approaches. Had to retreat with some awkward expression on face - can't admit to window shopping in fish market.
Explorer spirit awakened. Wander some more- looking for little Italy. No luck. Land in SoHo instead. Beautiful people. Walk into a plush coffee shop. Get cappuccino in a glass cup. Captured by the gradation of colors in the glass mug- espresso and foam tentatively engaging with each other. Look around. Catch a girl smelling her hair. !. ?. Start writing something- end up writing this. Visit restroom - 3 ft x 3 ft. Smart-ass quote above toilet: " We aim to Please; You aim too, Please". Do best to aim.
Time to go. Some more walking to be done.