Out and About

I’ve been crazy-busy lately with little time to blog. But I did manage to get out and about for a few weekends and explore some new (to me) parts of New York City; namely, the neighborhood known as DUMBO. The acronym stands for Down Under Manhattan Bridge Overpass. There’s a slew of neat shops and places to eat, which you can see on this map. Parking in the area is a major league PITA, so either use public transportation or allow plenty of time to find a parking spot.

My family and I started our exploration of the area a few weekends ago when I inadvertently took them to the area while shopping for a motor scooter. We did not explore the actual DUMBO neighborhood too much, instead we parked on its perimeter and went into Brooklyn Bridge Park and strolled to the Fulton Ferry Landing, where there’s a wonderful ice cream shop. The Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory is right there at the ferry terminal and is renowned for having excellent products. I say “renowned” because I can’t speak from experience since the line to get into the place was so long that we gave up. All those hungry New Yorkers can’t be wrong about the ice cream.

The view from one of the two parks in the area:

DUMBO parkDUMBO bridge

This carousel was rescued from another location and will eventually go into one of the parks. It’s currently housed in a storefront. Sadly, it cannot be ridden in its current location.

DUMBO carousel

During the last month, I’ve been thinking about photography and how lazy digital makes us. Just point the camera, press the button and upload to the computer. No real thought or planning required. So I took my old (1984) film camera out, loaded it with black and white film and took it with me on my journeys. I had to re-learn how to focus and meter the exposure! There’s a whole genre called street photography, which is what I was trying to do here:

Sidewalk closed

Not too shabby for 25 year old technology. Actually, from a technological perspective, this scanned 35 mm image has more data in it than one from my digital camera.

Also on my “visited places” list was an abandoned hospital. Well, not abandoned but out of business. I had the chance to walk through the hospital and inspect its contents as part of an auction. What a surreal experience, to walk the halls and enter the vacant rooms. Twice as strange since I worked there many years ago. It was a testament to what can happen to a business-even a hospital-if you don’t pay attention to the bottom line, contain costs and generate revenue.

The place was literally frozen in time, with white boards displaying information from the last day of operations.

MIH call board

The auctioneers organized all the fixtures and equipment by type. Here, an entire room of IV poles:

MIH IV poles

What a shame.

And finally, my new ride. In an effort to cut down on gas consumption, I’ll be commuting some of the time on this delightful scooter.

Vespa for blog

Leave it to me to save money by spending it! It’s quite fun to ride, gets upwards of 70 miles to the gallon and handles itself respectfully on the major parkways. It is registered as a motorcycle in my state; therefore, you need an MC license, which I had from previously owning a motorcycle. I got mine here, mainly because the sales people were friendly and willing to negotiate a little on the price. And that, of course, is how I came to be in DUMBO.

Cheers.

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About robertkerner

Educator, registered nurse, attorney, inquisitive mind
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