Two Walks, Two Neighborhoods

Over the last month-ish I cooked up a plan to move into our friend Ned's apartment while he goes on an around the world sabbatical. This means I'd be moving out of my place in the East Village. My lease was up and the timing was perfect. Two Sundays ago I woke up a little early, realized it was my last free morning in the neighborhood, and took a walk to Marcus Garvey park in the rain. 

I moved into Ned's last Wednesday. He still has a bit of time before his trip begins, so we're roommates for now. Friday morning we got up early and he took me on a walk through Inwood Hill Park in the rain to learn about my neighborhood. He told me stories about the people that live in the rocks and the murders that have happened in the park but also about the rock (seen below) that marks the spot where Manhattan was purchased from the Indians and getting birds to land on your hands and things like that.

So far everything is so far so good in Inwood. I'm living right on top of the A train so it's pretty easy and quick to get to midtown—the inverse is also true, so come up sometime. 

Only 3 Months Behind

You know that feeling when you discover you haven't posted anything from December, January or February? 

Came home from Dad's retirement celebration to find New York Christmas in full swing.


Started putting the Night + Market cookbook to work, toasting rice to make rice powder for my first chicken larb.

An early screening of Paddington 2 got me psyched up and talking about it non-stop ever since. Hope you've seen it by now!


There's a new taco shop above my subway stop that replaced an old favorite taco shop. The place is way, way too expensive or fancy for the neighborhood (but still does great business). I've made peace with it thanks to its $2 tacos al pastor happy hour deal.


Was very honored to attend JB and Maggie's French Christmas party.


Pre-Christmas lunch at Joe Jr.'s with Patricia


Episode VIII: took me two viewings to get it, third viewing I just sat back and thought "Maaan, this is gooood." Hope you watched it enough times to like it, too!


Last Jedi pre-gaming at the Donut Pub with this gingerdoughman.


Before we can celebrate Christmas, we have to say goodbye to Leanna. Everyone leaves! It's just a part of living in New York. Don't forget that I kicked a rat, so I'm leaving too.


Home to Chicago! Mom let us sneak into the attic at church. But also, we probably didn't need Mom's permission. And also, it probably wasn't Mom's permission to give. Anyway. We were up here.

While everyone was at the Rockefeller Chapel Christmas thing I was working on this porg.


Grandma's Christmas card 


Here's a new tradition: Christmas Eve Nachos!

Post Christmas, a lunch at Jarabe. I pose with a turtle from Collin and my torta.

Down to freezing cold sunny shiny Chicago one morning, make my first (and last) visit to Dad's new office.

Then I drove down to 63rd street for a quiet little burrito lunch at El Gallo de Oro, the restaurant that taught me to care about restaurants. El Gallo has barely changed in 20+ years and the food tastes exactly the same, burrito feels just the same in hand, same heat, same weight. ¡Viva el Gallo de Oro!

Back to New York, back to Joe Jr's!


We got a little bit of snow.


(Insert somewhere around here Grandma's funeral)

But RIP Dutch, also


Lucas was in town for the two-night Kismet pop up. Patricia and I went on crispy eggy rice night. It was awful dark in there.

The Times Square Grey's Papaya is a lot cheaper than all the other papaya-related hot doggeries. Grabbed these two beauties on my way to Last Jedi viewing #3.


Brooklyn at night


The new Linger Longer committee at church has been doing a smashing job. Look at this spread of pies!


Sarah blew through town (but mostly Jersey) celebrating her birthday and celebrating women.


Let's let sleeping puppers lie

The West Village by night, plus a tiny bit of East Harlem.

Celebrated Valentine's with the Lyman's and this beauty

Bryan had a birthday party where he asked people to do readings. I presented some of the research I've been doing on Finnegans Wake and Bryan read the selection I spoke about with his good Irish accent, because Bryan's very good at accents. He killed! It killed! Finnegans Wake killed!


Slipped out of Bryan's party a smidge early to participate in the cultural event of Black Panther opening weekend with the Spencer family and Alexis. Have you seen the article about Ryan and Courtney in the Times yet? I feel like it's the second time I've appeared in the Times in the past 12 months (but not by name this time). Maybe it's trifling of me to insert myself into their moment like that? But also, this is a blog about me, why wouldn't I?


The next day Andrea and Lincoln were in town and we went to the Queens Museum with Victoria. Except Lincoln didn't come. So you could say that Andrea, Victoria and I went to the Queens Museum. I was curious to catch the last day of the Never Built New York exhibit and I was not the only one. First photos: Ride out to Queens. Second Photos: Museum. 

Later that night I went to a pig party


But a couple days later I went to a REAL pig party at the Breslin, in honor of Tara's birth.

And to finish, a walk in a wet and heavy snow that was gone by the next morning.