August 2, 2019
New York City
I am sitting in a Blue Bottle shop right now, sipping on a cold brew but wishing it was a drip. The muggy New York morning wasn’t going to allow a warm beverage today, especially after working up a decent sweat from the morning subway commute. It’s hard not to compare everything here to SF but I will try to remain somewhat unbiased. Blue Bottle isn’t making that easy given the first drink on the menu is the Hayes Valley Espresso. Hayes Valley is an affluent neighborhood in San Francisco, located in the Western Addition between Alamo Square and the Civic Center. It is also home to a Blue Bottle that operates out of a garage sandwiched between an alleyway. I know I can always get the drip in SF because the weather seldom spikes over 71 degrees, even in the summer.
To my dismay, Blue bottle did not have any electrical outlets so I was forced to leave. I spent my morning wandering around, aimlessly dipping in and out of stores, knowing that everytime I entered I would be leaving empty handed anyways. I sat on a bench in Madison Square Park for a hot second and allowed my body to cease sweating, sadly my efforts were in vain because the second I stood up to continue my solo excursion beads began to form on my forehead and upper lip. Nevertheless, I trekked on towards Koreatown in search of asylum from the perpetual heat and humidity assault I had been a victim to since I stepped foot off of my Alaska flight in NY (I’m playing that’s way too dramatic lol). I found myself in a Korean beauty supply store browsing the shelves for anything that stood out. I ended up purchasing a hair product because I did not bring any.
I made my way back to Edith’s office building for lunch, and we sat down outside and ate leftovers from the night before. Edith wrote out the instructions for the subway back to the apartment via a text message and I was off. I could bore you with the details but along the way I missed my last transfer and exited the subway on 96 st. I thought to myself, “ No problem, all I have to do is walk 6 blocks north to 102 st and I’ll be home!” When I got to 102 st I realized something was off, I pulled out Google maps and noticed the enormous rectangle of green foliage that separated my current location from the desired one. I had ended up on the wrong side of Central Park and instead of backtracking and using the subway I figured a 2 mile stroll would be a walk in the park compared to the hilly topography of San Francisco. Boy was I wrong, it ended up raining. I thought I was going to be in New York, not monsoon season in Vietnam. I sulked my way back and paused in the foyer for a moment to look at myself in reflection of the ordeal that had just unraveled. In my reflection I saw defeat, frustration, and Ice Cube (I was wearing a graphic T of him leaning up against a car).
To be continued…