A scallion pancake is a staple in many Chinese restaurants these days. This place in the ‘village’ (Greenwich) downtown was a joint I’d passed many times. I’d never stopped. It looked vaguely unclean. It was a joint. There were many better choices. Finally?! We stopped one day – ate at one of the picnic tables. I ordered scallion pancakes. The rest is history. It is one of Dave’s favorites. We order them whenever they are on the menu. We’ve had them in restaurants all over. Dave will eat an order all by himself. Ha! Who knew? But, it was here. Right in this place. It all started here. I don’t know if it’s still in business. It wasn’t that great in the scheme of things. But here’s where the memory began. … well we did pass this street recently. The restaurant is gone. Long live the fond memory.
Fireworks. I’m a whole lot better taking pics of fireworks. I learned to do it right somewhere around 2009. I learned the basics. Use a tripod! You can hand hold too. That would be because the light/glow of fireworks is good enough to shoot at 1/30 sec. But you are much better on a tripod with 3 sec exposures. This slide was from 2000, the millennium in NYC. It was done in three locations that year: Hudson River, East River, and Statue of Liberty. This pic shows the water tower in front of the Hudson right by the Intrepid (air craft carrier). It’s my pic. It’s far from perfect. It’s dramatic enough. And I would have been happy. But I now know a different standard. The first 30+ years I thought I was good. Then I read that I could improve. It’s in my skill set now. I just gotta find some fireworks.
With digital it’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax. I did these handheld because I was not prepared for fireworks in California on the beach in December. Ok! Lemons? Lemondade! I used the Canon point and shoot. Video is something I never look at again. There were plenty of failures. But digital processors do so much. I got passable shots. I could do better with a tripod. But I was not willing to buy one on short notice.
Seven years ago. Hmmm….Shutterfly knows how to press my buttons. This was an uploaded series (in Shutterfly) from my birthday. How do you surprise me? It ain’t easy. Some people give. Some receive. I’m the former. It’s pretty hard to do something for someone who’s done about everything and has about all he could think of. I’m not being smug. It’s just that I have been a headache in the gift department for a lot of people for many years. Jules and her mother decided to give me a World Cruise dinner birthday as a surprise. Don’t ask. I don’t remember all the details except that it was a cold foggy almost rainy day/evening. They got me on the boat dressed semi-casual/formal – at least no tie, but shoes and socks. It’s a dinner cruise while the boat goes around lower Manhattan. Jules was sorely seasick. Oh my! She sat on deck in the freezing drizzle while we ate. No dancing. Was that her plan? Nope. She was pretty green up top – and pretty frozen too. She perked up as soon we disembarked. Anyway, she’s just like her dad; we both have a history of motion sickness. Fortunately, what I remember, it was a good meal. At least something memorable happened in 2010.
It starts a conversation. Going home. The New York skyline. Even out of focus I recognize the Empire State Building and one of the East River bridges is lit in the foreground. Traffic was moving. No stopping. Oh well. It’s blurred. I will put this on my bucket list of photos to take when time and location permit. Meanwhile, I saw this at night driving around in New York City. I wish you had been there too.
There is a side benefit to sitting in NYC traffic during the evening rush hour. I was not familiar with Williamsburg. So we had to go the hard way. GPS is nice. It will get you there. But to be a native, is to know the short cuts and avoid the sitting. We sat. But it was sunset and the benefit was that we had ample opportunity to photograph New York as I had never been allowed. Yes, we shot through and out the window. We got what we got. The new Kosciuszko Bridge, the skyline, the Empire State Building, the Freedom Tower – all of this was afforded to us.
There was a big ginormous cemetery in Queens that one rarely glimpses over the high fence. I got it with the ESB in the background. Neat!
We still sat for a good long while. But there was something to do too. Stuck in traffic? There’s a benefit. You can see the city from a vantage you will not otherwise be allowed. There are views and then there are views. …silver lining.
Nighttime in Chinatown is colorful too. Hey? Maybe that’s why I’m not a ‘black and white’ photographer? It was a crisp (cold…brrr) autumn evening. We walked a long way. I was parked on the other side of town from that ‘roast pig.’ Who knew? Lights and the city are something special. It was fun. I was glad to get into a warm car and go home.
I have switched hard drives (not enough storage space) so many times I did not know what I would get when I did a search for brother John. It’s been a few years now. I try to remember on his birthday. This one image popped up. I didn’t take it. Ha! It’s an early iteration of my Manhattan apartment before many renovations. We all had mustaches. That’s funny (to me). I kept mine all these years, Eric and John were more casual. Their significant others did not insist… It’s Christmas. We had an almost uncanny knack of duplicating presents. This was the year of the overcoat/raincoat. Everyone got one. “Like minds think alike?” It happened way more than this one time. Yeah, Cabbage patch and pound puppies and tickle me Elmo, but overcoats? Gimme a break.
She’s iconic. You see her for free if you ride the Staten Island ferry. Free. The ride is free. Just show up. There’s the usual crowd (mostly commuters). So, there is plenty of room at the rail. We did it. I had business in the city. It’s a grand ride. I wish it weren’t business. When you fly over her the pilots all refer to her as “The Lady.” Yup, that would be about right.
By next 9/11, I won’t remember these photos. But they are spooky symbolic. Recently, in the fog the tower of the new WTC – Freedom tower – poked through the mist. One could make a case that the old tower is there somewhere…. I wish. Time passes. The wounds remain fresh. An empty ache makes me recall it like yesterday. As the years pass, many find the wound fades. I wish, but no.
We visited. The plan was to meet up with Jules later. The day was rainy. We walked midtown. Trump and his building were up Fifth Av. I did not care to be near the chaos. He was in town and demonstrators were in abundance. And, in the same walk (across town) was the Sullivan theater – Stephen Colbert, pundit and thorn in the side of POTUS. NY NY, it’s a helluva town!
The naked cowboy owns this corner. He’s been there forever – through snow and rain. Really! (He was dressed like this in blowing snow!) I don’t recall this one. I think the original one left. Maybe he wore out his welcome? Look at all the commercials on his guitar. Tacky!! Nowadays there are hordes of costumed figures angling for a tip – Mickey, Statue of Liberty, Mario… It’s too clean to be sleazy. There are still plenty of undercover cops I presume. The pedestrian space has shrunk under the new mayor. They made more room for traffic. And Broadway shows start an hour earlier – 7PM – on Tuesday. Who thought of that?
Everyone laughs when I take out my camera on a plane. It’s not good – the conditions. You are at altitude moving along at 500 mph shooting through scratched plexiglass with sunglare and cabin reflections. Try a night shot? Oh brother! It’s a slow shutter speed that will surely blur your image. “Every once in a while a blind squirrel gets a nut.” Never give up. I go with a shutter speed of 1/100 sec. Let the ISO run on auto. Press the shutter and hope for the best. Nuts! Yup!
It’s random juxtaposition. I’m sure the two are unrelated. But it’s something to ponder and consider. They got an A. In NYC it means they passed the health inspection. No bugs or mouse droppings. Otherwise anything goes. I’m glad to know it.I haven’t eaten in the place. Too many restaurants, too little time…
It’s New York (City). This is a new building since I’ve been away. There’s a straight rod along the crooked edge. And it has a bridge across. Why? Conversation piece? Just ‘cause they could do it? I’d love to see it “all fall down.” Or not…
New York harbor, nighttime, the Staten Island ferry, it’s all for free. Yup, no fare, it’s free. And it goes right by the Statue of Liberty. And you get a nice view of lower Manhattan. You see the new Freedom Tower. For all of this you simply cannot beat the ride. The bonus is the night ride which gives you the lights of the city. It’s pretty special. Just get on the boat.
I love the graphics of this wall in a Manhattan restaurant that closed before I ever got a chance to eat there. Open – close, restaurants have a short survival. Some, less than others, close pretty quickly. Ambience is a big factor. So this place is stunning. Midtown Manhattan, great location, plenty of foot traffic, it is a sure fire deal. Nope! Gone in a year. I don’t know why. Bad food. Failed health inspection? Who knows? Another will replace it shortly. But I was very surprised it was shuttered the next time I passed. Of course, I had never personally been in there myself….
In Jeddah restaurants come and go too. Junk food rules. McD forever! A great concept place shuttered – Churros! They were terrific. Good stuff, great confection, fattening, sugary, cinnamon, chocolate dipping sauce – how could it possibly fail? Shuttered.
There are restaurants way overpriced. They don’t last. Two Italian restaurants sat side by side in Jeddah. The pricey one was just gone one day.
Location – if you are in the traffic pattern, lots of people see you and come to visit. My current favorite restaurant is relatively out of the traffic eye and has few customers. I hope they last. But it’s never a good sign when I am usually one of few customers eating and the waiters know you by name.
Back in 2011 David and I visited Governor’s Island. It was newly available to the public and was a free ferry ride from Manhattan. We rode our bicycles. It’s not a large park. We got around the space easily.
In the course of our wandering we came upon a group of telescope enthusiasts. Well, I suppose astronomers was more apt. What the heck! It’s broad daylight. Ah! Solar flares. And they were happening now. And with special filters you could see them.
And so I put my trusty Canon point and shoot against the ocular and shot a few images. I learned this trick from Jules who had shown me how to photograph hippos in Africa shooting through a pair of binoculars. Hey, you never know when a trick will be handy.
These are pictures of the sun and solar flares. Well, you will have no trouble seeing the disc of the sun. But as for flares…. Why now? This post is out of sequence to the usual. It’s because someone told me about seeing snow flakes by using a magnifying lens while the flakes fell on black construction paper. Cold paper! And then I speculated on photographing the flakes and how to magnify them to get an image. Yup, that’s my story…
Sticks, I gotta ask. I have no idea. They sell bundles. Can’t you just get sticks in the bushes and make your own. Not toothpicks. Not walking sticks. Not firewood. Sorry, I shouldn’t post something I have not researched. Hey, it’s a photography blog. I’m not a historian. While we’re on the subject…tomatoes. How’d we switch to tomatoes? …because it’s my blog and I have a picture of tomatoes for sale.
They are not good tomatoes. It’s a neatly stacked pile. They are orange. They are hard. They are tasteless. And while I watched a bunch of them dropped to the ground. They picked them up and continued business. People buy them up. And how would you ever know they hit the ground?
Don’t quit your day job. The mantra repeats in my mind. I’d be a wedding photographer if I could. Then the bridezilla stories abound on the wedding complaint sites. Oh, well, everyone gets rain. But! I sold a picture! My second! See? Don’t quit your day job. How’d they find me? This blog. Who knows? Out of the blue…can we purchase the photo we found on your blog. I hope they do not mind my showing the cover mock-up for the book. They wanted a high resolution digital file. Ah! My images are numbered. This was a slide. Roll number and frame number were not too hard to locate. And then I had several copies of the digitized image. However it was a real stroke of luck to find a high res Tiff file. Yup, luck! The original slide was buried in a box somewhere in storage. No, it would not be possible to find it. So serendipity, the publisher just happened to ask for a file I had. Most of my images sit redundantly backed up on four external hard drives. And now to payment, the publisher wanted bank information to transfer the funds. Identity theft?
After contacting the author of the book to be sure it was all above board, we settled on credit card accepted by my cousin Amy, who is a professional with a business. Done. Sold one! The last one I sold was in 2012. Nope, don’t quit your day job.
Call it what you will, the site is still the World Trade Center to me. This was my first and maybe last visit (for a long time) to the memorial fountain. It is open now. You can walk right up. It had just rained. Appropriate symbolism for tears and hope with blue sky in abundance. And I took the opportunity to use the reflection to mirror tower two, which will never be. There were twin towers once.
The names are there. The hole is symbolic. There is the noise of water but there is also a silence offered by the tall buildings that surround the site and it makes a hum and roar that drowns voices. It is not the reverent silence of the forest but of a city that continues and heals. The scar remains.
I think of Pearl Harbor and WW II. In time folks who were here will be gone and memory will fade. Meanwhile this fountain endures. The city is never truly silent. Neither too will memory every fade completely. I wonder if there can ever really be closure.
WTC one or Freedom Tower is done. It is finally topped and there is no more construction on the outside. A few years back they lit the inside with construction lights in red white and blue.
There is still a feeling of unfinished business as surrounding buildings are completed. There is still a traffic snarl. Business is busy. Plenty of tourists crowd the street. The cross is made of the wreckage and ruin. It’s symbolic defiance of terrorism. It’s a cross and that opens a host of thoughtful speculation. We are a land of many cultures and religion. But…
By it’s proximity to the WTC site this chapel was used for many things in the days after 9/11. Now it is open for visitor.
A cellist plays and it is about as mournful as it can be. Silence and solemnity are all around you. I was choked up. This many years later…I visited last year. My last. I’m out of NYC for now. I don’t plan to return anytime soon. Been there done that… All around are tributes – stuffed animals, firemen’s hats, pictures, and mementos left for the dead. …remembrance of a very sad sudden shocking event that still invokes the deep pain, I did not personally know any of the victims. It’s a miracle. But there were many whom I did know who lost loved ones. So in a first degree of separation relationship I knew someone who… Profound loss… It did not help a whit that they found and killed Bin Laden. It was not closure. I don’t think that retribution can ever be considered the same.