Sunday, April 10, 2011

"The Suburbs of Manhattan"

Today's New York Times features an article in the Real Estate Section on my neighborhood.  Actually, it's about the West 70s, so technically it's not exactly my neighborhood, but close enough to take some pride and feel some warmth about the area in which I've lived for most of my NYC life.

The article calls the Upper West 70s "the suburbs of Manhattan," and I smiled to read that because my sons have been calling it by that name for years!  It's a good summary of the area and, although the neighborhood has certainly evolved (mostly for the better) over the last 30+ years, my perspective on that which is irreplaceable elsewhere in the city is our location sandwiched between two major parks.  This was a godsend when my sons were small - the parks, and their playgrounds at the edges of the parks, were the most varied "backyards" one could hope for (and never have to mow or water).  And even though my young men are now too old for the playgrounds, the Central Park Reservoir and the Riverside Park promenade are our dedicated running and biking routes.

It's also wonderful to lay claim to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by telling visitors that if they simply start walking east (with a park map, otherwise I'd be looking for them lost in the Ramble hours later), they'll be at the Met in about 20 minutes.  It's "my" museum.  (And of course, when the kids were smaller, the American Museum of Natural History, five minutes from home, was a regular bad-weather weekend stop....for many happy hours running through the huge-for-New-York galleries.)

I can't believe how time can fly like this, where my neighborhood, so welcoming to the youngest citizens of New York, as the NY Times article describes, can also be so enjoyable - and new - to me, "une femme d'un certain âge," almost every day.

And, speaking of new - - -

I just found the new Tarallucci E Vino - it's on the corner of Columbus and 83rd Street.  Can't get much more convenient than that!  I realize now I've been to their large location near Union Square, as well as last week discovering their E. 10th Street address.  The West Side location is small and square-ish with good light from both corner sides, small marble-top tables and two long lengths of bar seating surrounding their bartender/barista who is installed smack in the center of the room.  In the morning, when I stopped by today, their variety and quality of pastries - all freshly made on the premises - made choosing tough.  But since I'm not likely to get a good cornetto with apricot filling elsewhere nearby, that was my choice.  And an excellent selection it was.  A little bit of contemporary Rome right in my neighborhood.  I love it!  I have a feeling that I'll be spending some time (and money) there on many meals.

It replaces a Subway franchise that had been there for as long as I can remember.  Talk about the neighborhood continuing to improve!!

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