Migration — New York, New York

Monday, November 03, 2008

A quick note on mince: Did not realize that the pie was such a hot topic. I’ve added another customer to my list for Thanksgiving. She grew up in Connecticut, but her dad was from the north border of Cajun country, so my theory still holds that only non-New Englanders really like the stuff.
Now to the topic. I missed Friday for a quick day trip to New York. It was terrific, but I was really glad to be on an outbound train as the costumed hordes descended. In the a.m., I had a great chat with my agent at Russell & Volkening, whom I had never met. Then a too-short viewing of Babar and family. I’d definitely go back to spend more time with the pencil sketches, preliminary water colors, final images, and informative narrative. I loved the way the De Brunhoffs showed Cornelius’s advanced age with wrinkles and glasses and Babar’s mourning for his mother with the droop of his little trunk and crumpled looking stance. V. pleased with myself that I could read the French. Granted these are  books for children, but I haven’t ventured into foreign languages in years. Indulged myself with the elegant catalog Drawing Babar.
Waiting for the subway on my way uptown for lunch with my friend Professor Farah Jasmine Griffin, I saw a nun in full regalia – long black habit, coif, whatever – wearing a huge cross. She looked awfully young. Then I looked again realized she was wearing way too much makeup, and that I’d just seen my first Halloween costume. It was about 1:15.
Farah and I haven’t seen each other in more than 10 years. We talked and laughed for two hours over salads and calamari at Café Fiorello. She’s going to help me with a couple of projects, and I’m mailing her copies of a couple of Mom’s books.
Anyone who hasn’t read Farah’s Beloved Sisters, Loving Friends should go out and get it TODAY!
Friday was such a gorgeous day I decided to walk to from 63rd and Broadway to MoMA at 53rd and Fifth Avenue. The museum is free after 4 on Friday, thanks to Target. It was great to see the numbers of costumes increase – even a few little tykes, with adults in tow. I also saw half a dozen men in shorts and T-shirts (it was warm but not that warm) running through the streets. Finally realized yesterday that they were training for the marathon. I wandered around in MoMA for a while. The tickets for Van Gogh were sold out, so I watched a couple of video installations. After I saw the skeleton of the man balancing a golden pole on one finger, and holding in his other hand a leash that led to the skeleton of a dog, I decided it was time to leave.
Walked from there to Grand Central where I watched more and more of the costumed throng. Ate some food court sushi (seaweed salad and a rainbow roll with flying fish roe), which was fresher and tastier than most of the stuff I get in Connecticut. I thought I was going to escape the city without craziness, but no … As I was going into the ladies room, I heard the attendant tell a male police officer, “She just fell out of the stall.” I went in and sure enough, there was a woman lying on the floor.
I detoured, making my way through a crush of young women who had stripped down to practically nothing as they donned their costumes. When I came out, a female police officer had joined the guy, and they were trying to get the woman up off the floor. The female officer was saying, “I’m going to have to call an ambulance.” I had the impression that the woman was young, had tousled dirty blonde hair – didn’t seem to be drunk but more likely o.d’d – or maybe even in a diabetic coma. I took one look at the male officer, and his face said, “I don’t want to be in here with all these half-dressed kids!” When I left the bathroom, the cops had managed to get the young woman onto a bench and were trying to make her sit up without much success. My New York Moment over, I hopped on the train home.
Coming soon: Sore leg muscles and “The Sinister Pig” on Metro North.

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