It began in the subway; not that anything really happened. There was a beautiful couple seated across from me. Both African looking, the woman had high cheekbones and a wonderfully sculpted face. I wish I had the nerve to whip out the camera and take pictures of all the interesting people I see. She was nicely dressed, but I don’t remember the clothes. It was her face that held me, framed with long colorful beaded earrings. The young man with her was very black, nicely dressed, with a pleasant face. The extraordinary part was the watch he had on, seemingly diamonds with a heavy gold band. I can usually tell real from fake; this was so unusual I don’t know. And I could not hear their speech to know where they had come from.
Then a woman came into the car and began speaking in a loud voice. "I don’t sing, and I don’t dance, but I am HIV positive and I need your help to get something to eat. Anything at all, dollar bills or change." She was not begging, just stating the facts; I really admired her feistyness. I contributed to her, but I was one of only a few. I guess people want begging and groveling.
I was on my way to Tribeca to visit Julia. I got off the subway at Canal Street and walked into Chinatown looking for the dragon fruit. It was gone from most of the stands that were selling it on Wednesday. I had to walk quite a way before I found a few pieces. Haven’t tasted the dragon fruit yet, but the fresh figs are delicious.
I walked west on Walker Street, passing two fascinating fabric shops where I managed to resist buying anything. I may have another chance next week. I just don’t know what I would make with a wonderful piece of fabric, to say nothing of all the pieces I already own.
I worked on Julia’s computer, restoring some data, getting it cleaned up and recommending she get a new one. I don’t think anything is going to help this one.
We had lunch together at a new place called Turks and Frogs; lovely Turkish appetizers that we shared: red lentil pate, thick yogurt with walnuts, smoked eggplant salad and a kind of warm pastry stuffed with feta cheese. Great place! I remained at her office until the first rainstorm passed then started walking to the subway to go up to midtown for my dinner date. Does it sound like I’m always eating? Naw, I just like talking about food.
I thought there was a subway entrance on the south side of Canal Street, but when I got all the way to Church and hadn’t found it I knew I had gone too far. I stopped on the corner, probably looking lost, which I was, and a young Asian woman approached me. I asked where to find the A train. She had a different agenda and held out a small packet of white powder in a plastic bag. Chinese medicine? She must have been desperate for a customer; I’ve never been approached like this before. Another man standing at the corner gave me the directions I needed. Everyone is an entrepreneur in New York.
Mike and Lois were coming from New Jersey to meet me. They hadn’t arrived at the restaurant when I got there so I walked around for awhile. Traffic was horrible. I was sure they would be late, but I went into the restaurant when I saw another storm approaching.
Sometimes I like Italian food if it is very good. One of the dishes described on the menu had "pink sauce" on it. Somehow, that left me very skeptical, but it wasn’t my party.
The food did not exceed my expectations; the glass of wine helped. After dinner we went to the Actor’s Temple, a synagogue founded by Mike’s grandfather. There were no actors present among the very small congregation, or perhaps I should say one bad actor. One man, who claimed he was a rabbi, started harassing the real rabbi, and making a loud nuisance of himself. Not a good way to begin Shabat, but an fitting end to this day.