I am feeling somewhat encouraged: Over the weekend, I managed to take two rides. I don't know exactly how much I rode, but I guess that I pedaled about 70 kilometers on Saturday and that much, or perhaps a bit less, on Sunday.
Each trek took me through various parts of Brooklyn and Queens. One thing is that, although I had to navigate traffic in some of the shopping areas, I found some solitude, in expected and unexpected places.
Lockdowns have been imposed in other states and countries. There has been talk of one here, too: Schools reverted to remote instruction last week, and if infection rates rise, "non-essential" businesses could close. (Good thing I got my hair done on Monday, even if I'm not going on a date or to any weddings, graduations or other large gatherings!) If I hadn't known any better, I would have assumed the city had shut down when I saw this:
Thirteenth Avenue in Borough Park has long been a busy commercial strip. My father grew up just off it; as a kid, I can recall trips to stores and bakeries--and pizza runs!--when we visited his parents. In the decades since, the neighborhood has become one of the world's major Orthodox (Lubavitcher Hasidic) Jewish enclaves. That, of course, is the reason why everything was closed--and I could ride on Thirteenth Avenue as if it were some country lane.
Well, most stores were closed because of shabat. Gino's--yes, the destination of our pizza runs--managed to survive the changes in the neighborhood at least until a year or so ago. Any time I was anywhere the neighborhood, I'd stop by for at least a slice or two--they were still as good as my childhood memories!--though, it seems, they stopped making arancini, one of the world's great comfort foods, some time ago.
I know time marches on and all that, but I couldn't help but to feel what I saw from the Canarsie Pier on yesterday:
Well, I am healing, at least physically. I suppose I'll "recover" from losing Gino's, too, even if it was one of the last old-school Brooklyn pizza joints.