Ch-Ch-Changes: The life of a NY neighborhood

bras for sale on upper east side
Mix and match bra set anyone? $3.00 a piece! 

After moving away from 152 East 83rd street over a year ago, the husband and and I returned to our old hood for a BBQ birthday party celebration at our ex-neighbor’s on Sunday. It was the first time Chris and I had returned together since we departed our one-bedroom apartment in November 2011 to move to South Orange, NJ. As I waddled around the streets that used to be called home, we became nostalgic.

So…what had changed in a year and a half? Stores have come and gone, there was a new gym, but many things remained the same too. Lexington Avenue is still brimming with restaurants and specialty shops–we were surprised to see a Sabon on the corner of 86th and Lex, one of my favorite bath and body stores (of course it opened three blocks away from our apartment AFTER we moved!).

86th is still a hot spot for street vendors–jewelry, electronic accessories, art, and…bras! That was a new one! I couldn’t resist and took a photo. It was the only table that you could hear crickets next to–I mean really, who would want to purchase unmentionables that have been exposed to car exhaust all day (and probably perverts’ grubby fingers)…

We had lunch at Hummus Kitchen on 3rd Ave and 84th, a favorite spot of ours for reasonably priced, good, healthy Mediterranean food and then walked over to Housing Works second-hand shop on 77th, hoping to find some home decor treasures (as we always had) but left empty-handed (as we always did).

Before heading to the party we went back up to Little Brown Cafe on Lex and 84th, now called Koffeecake Corner but still has the same fabulous chocolate-inspired menu–I had the salty caramel hot chocolate and a big warm “pillow” chocolate chip and walnut cookie #yum!

As we were sitting in the cafe, I was reminded of something New York City is famous for–overhearing  conversations. While sitting at the communal table we were privy to an ex-California girl’s rapid fire speech about food, New York, roommates, and lord knows what else to her overwhelmed friend who could barely get a word in.  This continued for endless minutes and I looked at Chris as if to say, “Take me back to our quite backyard in New Jersey!”

After the party, Chris and I stopped by the 7-11 on 3rd and 82nd Street where we always bought lotto tickets–we weren’t surprised to see it was still there. We purchased one NY lotto and then walked to the car. “Congratulations!” a man yelled at us on the street, referring to my pregnancy.

“Why don’t they congratulate you when you are actually walking around with your kids? Only when you’re pregnant?” I asked Chris.

“Because children are loud,” said Chris matter-of-factly. True. And New York City makes enough noise already on its own.

Oh, and if you’re wondering…we didn’t win 🙂


2 responses to “Ch-Ch-Changes: The life of a NY neighborhood

  1. Great post! I actually get a bit nostalgic about the east side. I can't believe we arrived there six years ago! I was anxious to get out of the 2nd Avenue subway war zone, but I do miss a few spots here and there. We were almost neighbors 🙂

    I especially miss those first few months living in NYC. There are no words to capture what that was like. It seems like yesterday!

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