Tuesday, October 16, 2012

East Coasting Southward

A benefit for the (sadly underfunded) Boston Mounted Police held in Hamilton, Mass.  Too rainy for an actual game of polo, but the youngsters were allowed to crack the balls around.


In a federal office, a painting depicts a Cold War building.  When I looked closer, I saw a charming 
(and unlikely) detail.


 In Topsfield, the blue ribbon went to this picturesque little bonsai.

The train ride to New York City was fast, but the obnoxious cellphone conference calls were all around me.  In the city, I stumbled across this group while working my way in and out of the
spots on West 44th.

A college friend (and bourbon-pushing host) has keys to Gramercy Park.  He took me through and gave me the last three years of gossip concerning the politics of the place.  Fascinating.

A lunch with (The Trad) Tin-Tin, who served great wine and great food.  He was as much the gentleman as I had imagined.  Sharp wit, attentive host, and an all-around fun guy.
At Penn Station, I saw this Anglo-clad gent waiting his train as well.

A heavy new jacket, gift from Plum.  Thick and thorn-proof and warm beyond reason.  He took me in and out of some excellent restaurants near Clinton Hill.  I like bars and restaurants that offer very little choice.  Gigantic menus are a turn-off for me, and I often leave the choices to the server or the chef.

Bartenders are always put off when I order "something to drink" but refuse to specify even the category.  "Beer?  Wine?  Liquor?  Sir, you have to narrow it down."  Since I like nearly everything, I'm easy.  "You're the professional" I tell them, "I'd like something to drink".

We Americans have too much choice, and we limit the richness of our experiences by constantly customizing our food and drink environments.  Next time you're in a restaurant, order "something to drink and something to eat" and see what they bring you.  Sure, they'll protest at first, but you'll be better for the experience.

In DC now, en route to New Orleans for dinner at the dress code mandated Galatoires.  


  1. Tintin is as you describe. Any chance you are pausing in Philly?

  2. I think I'd probably punch you in the face if you came in to my bar and simply ordered, "something to drink." Either that or I'd give you a glass of water.

    1. It wouldn't be the first time it happened to me. I'd tip accordingly, though.

  3. When we lived in Gramercy Park, we had a key to the park. Your mention brought back fond memories.......it's such a lovely, quiet park; or it was, in the late '60s early '70s!
    I bet that the cost of a key is much higher now!
    Back then the ONLY area that was called Gramercy Park were the 4 blocks that surround the park. Now, it appears that some real estate jerks have included a whole lot of strange areas in the nomenclature, which drives this purist to utter distraction!

  4. We were almost at Myopia for that event, but the rain kept us away.

    A friend took a blue ribbon at Topsfield for her Nantucket basketry.

    Jealous of your Gramercy Park tour. I've wanted to go in, since I learned, as a little girl, that it was locked.

    Very hodge-podgey entry.


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