Galleries, events, Copacabana & miscellaneous

Alfie and I have enjoyed a lovely 10 weeks in New York. Time seemed to speed up at the end and I was keen to take as many evocative photos as possible.


So this blog will be heavy on photos dealing with many subjects… Here we have Jeanette, my favourite door-person making a fuss of Alfie.


The door people are usually men in Claremont Avenue. Jeanette was the exception. She lives in New Jersey with her girlfriend and is really kind-hearted, especially where Debbie is concerned.


All the door people in Claremont Avenue look out for Debbie as she walks her Seeing-Eye dog.


The next photos are Mr T related. First, Debbie and I were back at Desmond’s listening to Tom play and the television was on, analysing the day’s events.


Comey (FBI Director fired by Mr T) had given his long-awaited testimony to the Senate. I watched at home from 10 a.m. until finish nearly 3 hours later. I wasn’t the only one – there were tens of millions watching all over the country, some having parties in bars.


Shortly after, I came across a woman on the bus with badges on her handbag:


“Make America Great Again – Impeach T….” and a picture of the man himself with “Fascist” underneath. I met no-one in New York who would have disagreed with those sentiments.


I took a picture of a woman at a Craft Fair at the Lincoln Centre. She makes beautiful felt and silk jackets that I cannot afford. I loved her glasses that were made for her by a friend.


I couldn’t resist taking photos of a group of Superheroes chatting near Time Square.


I also love the lights on the Empire State Building at night – so evocative of New York.


When Alfie and I went to Battery Park we walked up through Chelsea. I re-visited Bowie’s apartment from the outside, thinking there might still be a mural there, or a sign that he had been there. There was none. The grey blocks on top of the red, with the trees on the terrace are Bowie’s duplex.


Walking up Lafayette Street we popped into a bookshop owned by a charitable housing association that has a coffee shop. It is very popular!


I also include, above, a photo of the oldest church in New York (downtown) and next to it is a photo of a building uptown, near Central Park, that looks just like a castle.


I then include a picture of Bryant Park at night – such a lively spot, surrounded by interesting buildings.


The burger photo is included because when I was driving around the USA with Alfie people asked me if I had ever tried a ‘Wendy’s’ burger. I never did. I was in mid-town at 5th Avenue collecting my watch that I had had serviced (half the price than in the UK, ironically) having just been a ‘guinea pig’ for a student learning cranio-sacral technique (beautifully relaxing) and I felt very hungry and happened upon a Wendy’s. It was delicious!

More evocative photos of the New York skyline follow.

Ah! The Copacabana (sounds of Barry Manilow – yes they play the song at the end of the evening). Debbie and I went there one Saturday evening – here is a photo of taxis in the rain before it became dark, and of Debbie before the club filled up. We had a great time with people our own age. (It was a ‘baby boomers’ Meet-up!) The food before the disco was enjoyable too! We ended up meeting the local lothario and dancing with him – a charming unreliable drunk! I guess the Universe still has the odd laugh sending Narcissists across my path.


There were many graduation ceremonies across the road from where I was staying, in the Columbia campus. Alfie and I met some lovely young students there one day.


The photo next to them is the little art exhibition that John, who looks after Debbie’s building, curated.

And the next 2 photos are interesting ones from Central Park.


Beneath is a sketch that captivated me in the American Folk Art Museum – a Russian artist who was brilliant, studied at Columbia, then spent the last 50 years in an asylum.


The 2 bridges cross the East River.


I love the picture of Alfie and Ellie on Ellie’s bed. They were so cute together.


The Japanese in New York held a free event at Carnegie Hall and they had various Japanese musicians, singers and dancers performing. It was a lovely evening.


At the Cathedral of St John the Divine (the largest one in the USA) there were various free events.


One I went to just before Easter was a recitation of Dante’s Inferno. Later, the New York Philarmonic gave a free concert.


Miller Hall at Columbia University also gave a free and intriguing concert that Debbie and I attended, sitting on the stage.


Then on my last weekend, the Puerto Rican contingent in New York held their annual noisy parade.


I hadn’t intended to attend, but coincidentally I was making my way to the Frick 70th and 5th Avenue, just where the parade was passing.


So I managed to get to the Frick, despite the barriers, and took a few photographs of the parade as it passed by the window. In the last photo the people are wearing masks.


The Frick Museum is a hidden gem. Other museums in New York get far more press, but it was an absolute delight. First of all, Mr Frick was a remarkable collector who had his house built so that it would eventually be the museum that it is today.


Secondly, I was astounded to find the very famous Rembrandt self-portrait there.


There was  a wonderful small exhibition of Rembrandt’s sketches that I had to have the catalogue of – astounding works of art.


There are also beautiful Whistler paintings there. Although you can only take pictures in the courtyard, I found these two posters in the Ladies’ loo – they are a good representation of the actual paintings in the room dedicated to Whistler.


Another hidden gem of an art gallery is the JP Morgan Gallery that has an eclectic mix and current exhibitions. When I went they had one called ‘I’m nobody! Who are you? – The Life and Poetry of of Emily Dickinson’. I had no idea that she was so enigmatic and had lived such a solitary life. They had a reproduction of the wallpaper in her bedroom.


The main attraction in the museum was the incredible number of very rare first editions dating back hundreds of years.


On Friday nights there is a jazz trio playing.


I really liked the painting of Leda and the Swan and of the bird. Upstairs, you can take a lovely photo of the Empire State Building.


Finally, I visited the MOMA on another Friday – and include some of the artwork that I appreciated (though I didn’t much appreciate the current exhibitions there).


I like the large rose in the garden and I really love the Picasso ‘Still life with 3 puppies’


So my ten weeks are up. Goodbye, New York. We will be back to savour all of your treasures again!



Incidentally, since attending the BRILLIANT ‘Julius Caesar’ by the Public Theatre in Central Park where they take the piss out of the ‘president’ there has been some controversy around the play.

Certain funding has been withdrawn – by Delta Airlines (so I will never travel with them) and a bank.

It is astounding that this has happened and I have been receiving e mails from the Public Theatre about it.

The play is about the death of Julius Caesar and the hysteria around the play is undeserved.

I would urge everyone to see the play, laugh at the hints of the Narcissistic president and his family and not give in to the pressure from his (dwindling) allies.








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