Jeanne-Claude, who with her husband Christo brought The Gates to Central Park in 2005, died yesterday. She is quoted in the NY Times obituary as saying that the art she and Christo made expressed “the quality of love and tenderness that we human beings have for what does not last.”
The steel bases for The Gates were being loaded into dumpsters Saturday near Harlem Meer. Good-bye orange ephemeral artwork!
With any luck I will be on the bus to work when this is posted. I had an enjoyable week off. It is going to be difficult to get out the door early in the morning.
I met my goal of having lunch at five different places. Four places were new to me.
Monday: Pulled-pork sandwich at the 2nd floor cafeteria at MoMA. Sandwich was good. The ingredients were fresh. I should have had the awesome looking flan. Too bad you can't get to the cafeteria without going to the awful museum.
Tuesday: Rickshaw Dumpling Bar, W 23rd St. If you're going out for dumplings go to Chinatown, they are cheaper and better there. That said, the wasabi and shrimp dumplings (6 for $4.95, add $3 if you want a salad) I had here were good. Don't worry, there's hardly any wasabl.
Wednesday: Land Thai Kitchen, 82nd and Amsterdam. Their $7 lunch special gets you an appetizer and an entree. It's a good deal and the food was good. I had a green papaya salad and drunken noodle with chicken. The salad was on the small side. That left room for dessert --molten chocolate cake with ice cream. Thai iced tea comes in a rotund terracotta jug that requires two hands to lift if your hands are smaller than mine.
Thursday: Birthday trip to Dinosaur BBQ. Thought I'd be nice and give them another try. No improvement over my previous visit. I ordered the pulled pork and ribs combo ($12.95). The sides were mac and cheese and collard greens. I forgot to order the sauce on the side. Turns out the sauce was needed because the pork was so dry. Ribs were flavorless. Big disappointment. I won't be back. Unexpected bonus: search Chowhound or the web for this place and you'll find unintentionally hilarious remarks from people about being in "scary" Harlem.
Friday: Splurged at Café Sabarsky at the Neue Galerie (86th and 5th Ave). Let's just say this lunch cost more than all the other lunches last week combined. The value of the lunch was also greater than all the other lunches combined. Pan-seared arctic char with semi-caramelized onions, bacon and green beans. A beautiful salad of mixed greens. Esterházyschnitte (hazelnut cake with vanilla butter-cream) for dessert. So good. Tip: Don't go to the Galerie unless the third floor exhibits are open. It was reduced admission on Friday because they were installing a new exhibit. The permanent collection on the second floor is very small and is contained in 2 rooms. Unexpected bonus: Walked past Mayor Bloomberg's house on 79th St. as Mayor Bloomberg arrived.
Unrelated: Today is the final day to get dollar cream puffs in honor of the Upper West Side Beard Papa Sweets Cafe's first anniversary.
The Gates have already been taken down at my end of the park so I was surprised to see them still up in the southeast corner this afternoon. Even better, the weather was miserable! Instead of walking to the subway I walked across the park taking pictures.
Don't worry, there are more photos of The Gates to come!
On Thursday I had my second of three Mohs surgeries. This one was a pretty minor procedure, about 1.5cm in diameter if anyone is interested. I'm sporting two inches of stitches "along a natural crease" in my forehead. Unlike last time my eye isn't swollen shut and I'm not wiped out. Not sure I should be out walking around in the cold weather for three hours but tomorrow is the last day for The Gates.
Shortly after taking that last photo Murphy's Law reared its ugly head. There was a great photo op, but the camera battery died just as I was going to take the picture. I'm not going to reveal the photo op just yet, but I'll be at Harlem Meer around 9:00 tonight in case it returns.
There's a little creek that runs through the bottom of The Ravine south of Lasker Rink. Under the light of the moon and a couple of street lamps a waterfall on the creek looks like this:
Next week is vacation in the city time for me. I'm taking the week off but not going anywhere. I will probably finally go to the new MoMA and I would like to see the Tim Hawkinson exhibit at the Whitney, including the Überorgan at the sculpture garden at Madison and 56th. To make the week seem vacation-like I'm going to eat lunch at a different restaurant every day.
The Gates look like strange orange sentinels guarding Fort Clinton.
Tonight was the first chance I had to use the tripod I bought a few weeks ago. Unlike this morning the park was quiet and I spend a couple of hours walking around taking pictures.
At 110th and Lenox, where the top photo was taken, a young couple with orange shirts asked me to take their photo with their camera. An older couple from the neighborhood had seen something about The Gates on television and had all sorts of questions for me. A bit further in the park people were skating in Lasker rink. Kids were walking between the rink and 110th St. Beyond the rink on the south side of Harlem Meer a woman was walking her dog. She was the last person I saw until I walked out of the park an hour later. It was odd having the park to myself.