Everyone’s Your Friend in New York City

lower east side street
lower east side street

My trip to New York City started, as most of my trips do, with an early morning drive to Cody to catch the flight to Denver. You can fly to two places from Cody: Denver on a United affiliate or Salt Lake City on an American Airlines affiliate. I try to go to Denver because a) the Denver airport has free wifi and b) if I get stuck there, I can stay with my godparents, and they will take me out for sushi, which is extremely nice of them, especially since I’m prone to giving them a hard time for being Republicans.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.

When I woke up yesterday at 5, I looked out the window to see 3 or 4 inches of snow on the ground. This was vaguely irksome largely because I’ve somehow misplaced the snow brush I use to get the snow off my car, but it was no great matter. I fed the cats, ate breakfast, got the cats some extra water, chucked my bags in the car, and headed out. A couple of minutes later, I was on the highway, where I suddenly realized that it was still snowing — and then further realized that I couldn’t see more than a few feet in front of me. Between Cody and Meeteetse there is nothing — a couple of ranch and county roads, an oilfield, and a lot of big land empty of everything but sagebrush and cows. It does not inspire confidence to think about driving the thirty miles in a blizzard. I thought, “There is no way that planes are taking off in this,” and so I turned around and went back to town to doublecheck on the flight. The internet said flights from Cody were still departing. On time. It seemed highly unlikely to me that i was going to make it on time while going 15 miles an hour, but I thought perhaps they’d delay the flight and I’d make it after all, so I set out again.

This time, luck was with me, and I got in behind a snow plow and a truck, and I was able to follow them and thus see (sort of) where I was going. I’d have taken a picture of it for you all, but my camera was buried in my suitcase, and I had a deathgrip on the wheel. So just imagine darkness, millions of tiny swirling snowflakes, and two sets of taillights. The snow plow turned off a little before the halfway point, but I was able to follow the truck the rest of the way (seriously, if you were driving an F250 to Cody yesterday morning, early, and there was a Honda Civic on your tail the whole way, get in touch and I will buy you dozens of drinks).

I made it in time, miraculously, and aside from the racist guy I behind me in line at the security check point, the rest of the trip — two planes, a bus, a subway, and some walking — was uneventful. Just as well. I’d had about all the eventfulness I could take.

I am staying here at my friend Jenna’s on the Lower East Side. My house in Wyoming is about four times the size of this apartment, and I would guess that I pay a quarter of the rent that Jenna does, but then she is in New York City and I am in the sticks, and although we joke about trading lives for a few months, I doubt either of us would have it any other way. Anyway, it was weird to hear voices coming up from the street when I went to bed last night after midnight, but weird in a good way. I slept well and woke up and thought, “I am in New York City and I can do anything I want!”

What I wanted, today, was a little meander around the Lower East Side. After breakfast, I walked over to Bluestockings, which is a bookstore/cafe/zine store. I took a picture of one of their t-shirts, and now I am wondering when/if someone will flag it as inappropriate content on Flickr. I spent a ton of money on books and zines and (I already own alternative menstrual products). The cashier asked if I was from out of town, and I explained that yes, I was visiting from Wyoming, but that I’ve spent a lot of time in the city. (I always feel like I have to point that out to people — I’m not just a tourist! Really!) She was asking, it turns out, because Eileen Myles and Rebecca Solnit are both appearing at the store in the next couple of months, and I’d bought books by both of them. Ah well.

Then I headed over to the Essex Street Market, where I got most of the stuff for dinner tonight for about $9. I meant to take pictures inside, but it was crazy crowded, so I didn’t. I picked up the handful of other things I needed at another small market on the way back and then came back here to quick soak beans (Jenna, her partner Eric, and a couple other friends are coming for dinner — I like to cook for people when I visit them), eat some lunch, upload photos, and finish writing up this entry.

Oh yeah, last night we went to a wake. Pictures and more details are on Flickr.

Leave a Reply