the last days of May

June 1, 2015 |  Category:   life nyc







We haven’t had too many city adventures lately, mostly because we’ve been escaping to various gardens and parks outside the city to take advantage of Spring in all its flowering glory. Commuting to an office a few days a week has also dampened my desire to take a train into Manhattan on the weekends to hang out. But now that the trees have shed all its petals and bursts of color in exchange for a canopy of green, we found ourselves in the mood to stay local this weekend.


On Friday after school, we all jumped in the car when Mark got home from the kitchen to make a delivery in Dumbo. Walking around the cobblestone streets, we counted no less than 6 wedding shoots in and around the neighborhood. With the backdrop of lower Manhattan across the river and two iconic Bridges, you can’t argue that there’s a better location for a NYC wedding photoshoot. The streets were bustling with people getting off work and you could taste the anticipation of the weekend in the air. The city in twilight hours is irresistible – you just want to stay outside and watch the light shift from gold to dusk and enjoy the evening breeze.

On Saturday morning we walked around the Lower East Side, eating our way through a block party celebrating the 75th birthday of the Essex Street Market and hitting up Economy Candy afterwards. Hard to believe, but it was our first time in the store. Remember candy cigarettes? I had totally forgotten about them, but they had them and I had to laugh at the thought that at one point in time, candy cigarettes was totally acceptable for little kids. And I loved them as a kid, I did! We used to hang them from our lips, pretending to take long drags, wearing Jordache jeans and god knows what else from the 80s. The girls just looked at the boxes like it didn’t even register. They quickly moved on to other, more enticing looking bins.

I spent the rest of the day Saturday walking around by myself, popping into stores, trying to satisfy a particular sandal search quest. When I’m looking for something I can be quite obsessed, though with much less shopping stamina than I used to have. It had been awhile since I walked leisurely around the city alone and it felt like this great luxury of time. I looked through all the open windows of cafes and restaurants and felt a weird jealous pang of all the people brunching, which is silly, of course. I can’t explain it, but something about that particular scene that morning just felt far removed from my life. Maybe it was just being in the Lower East Side which isn’t a neighborhood I go to much anymore; it reminds me of a past life I used to have. I guess I’ve also become more reclusive in this last year. But the day ended with a backyard potluck dinner back in Brooklyn with our other food biz friends, so I’m not as much of a lost cause on the social front as I sound.

The weekend felt like a precursor to what we can look forward to this summer. It’s already June. I do hope time paces itself a bit. Although we have much to look forward to in the coming months, I’m wanting time to sloooooow down. 24 hours in a day isn’t nearly enough.

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  • Genesis June 2, 2015 at 7:18 pm

    I had a similar pang of nostalgia when I stumbled upon candy cigarettes at a boutique candy shop here in California. I can’t believe that they still manufacture them, let alone that our parents let us buy them back in the day.

    We too played cool, although a decade later for me, it was wearing Bongo jeans and LA Gear shark gill sneakers. Good times.

  • Jeanne June 4, 2015 at 2:55 am

    I and a lot of my friends are going through nostalgia pangs right now. These are beyond the “oh remember when we used to” kind of memories. These are deep seeded longings to go back to our younger years. The time period depends on the person; some wishing for high school, others college and others in their early 20s. The commonality is wishing we could relive that youthful age once again and its free-ness and the individual-ness that we don’t have now (not that we don’t love our families). It’s hard to explain. Maybe it’s midlife. Maybe it’s that some of our kids are in high school or entering college. It’s a very interesting observation.

  • Nora June 6, 2015 at 2:20 pm

    Hi Jenna, I’ve been reading for about a year or so but haven’t commented previously, I really enjoy your writing and photography. All the best from a cool early June in Ireland.

  • Dee August 10, 2015 at 8:50 am

    I went to Economy Candy about two years ago for the first time to buy rock candy in bulk for an event. Love the place! Ah, candy cigarettes. I’d be mortified to find my kids fake puffing the way we used to.