Sometimes you have to leave Manhattan to see what it was really like before the glitz and glamour. The Peter Pan donut shop with pink-and-turquoise-clad waitresses and Formica table tops is the real deal. On a Saturday morning, we take the L train and meet H and Brother H to consume too much in the New York equivalent of a greasy spoon, all with the added benefit of sugar. I have a chocolate eclair that’s just come out of the bakery. It’s consumed in seconds. I don’t feel too greedy.
But Brooklyn is changing. Like World War Z, hipsters crawl out of every nook and cranny. I felt odd cos I didn’t have bleached blonde hair and heavy make-up, wasn’t wearing the skinniest of jeans (not a good look on me anyway) nor taking my small spiky shrimp of a dog for a walk. The best sight was the girl with a 50s quaff and sequins skirt dolled up to the nines. It would’ve been fine save the fact she was going for a jog.
Gentrification. We all love it but when it takes over it also takes everything away. H spoke of her favourite haunts but we knew it was that frail moment, good now, Gap tomorrow.
The day was spectacular with a cold wind. We took the ferry from Greenpoint down to Dumbo. Lunch up at Brooklyn Heights made me realise what a wealthy part of town this is. Spectacular brownstones lined the streets, sturdy, serious. There were some great gardens, including the one below.
H mentioned that Brooklyn was its own city once. It’s as big a Manhattan though without the highrises, a completely different experience altogether.