Trip to New York (June 2016) Part 1
This last June early in the month I spent a week in New York to get some things done and see my dad. This writing is not necessarily spiritual, or insightful, but just a record of a trip that I'd like to mark down in writing. Recording history, even our history, is part of living in time and has a place.
My dad, the Cohanan, seemed a bit more frail. I'm not sure if he was exercising as much. He did go to Senior Stein Center usually twice a week and told me he did 15 minutes of stretching every morning. He claimed to eat well, but bagels and bread and muffins filled his menu. He is free to do what he wants but his skin is showing some rashes and as some doctor crudely worded it, 'the skin is puking toxins and garbage.' His walk to first avenue, about six blocks going and coming was his roadwork. I think he used to do more but the summer has been hot.
I had worked on the book 'Bunny on the Stars' about my mother's writings on seven film stars and it was finished and complete and it felt tight. Dad and I showed it to the director of Stein Center and she was more than willing to have my father do a presentation on it. As of yet he hasn't followed through. The heat, plus his skin rashes, plus various doctor visits, have preoccupied him. Plus, he doesn't always follow through, at least right away.
Earlier in the week I had traveled to the West side to the Lincoln Center. Previously I had stopped by the Donnell library on 53st near 5th avenue, one of my favorite libraries, and saw that it was closed and had been closed I think for three years. I could be wrong here. Anyhow, checked with MOMA across the street and they said the library real estate was bought by a builder who promised to reopen the building in a month. It's one of my favorite libraries, or was, and would have been nice for them to have had a copy of the book but not this time around.
Anyhow, collected myself afterwards at a Starbucks surrounded by tourists, dance students, and others shielding themselves from the heat. New York still is a concrete jungle and can get hot. Eventually did stride to Lincoln Center, walked up the stairs and faced three gigantic buildings. One, I think the dance building, was funded by Gershon, a movie mogul. A high school classmate at one point was president of his company. Meandered into the gift shop and the help was helpful, directing me to the Billy Rose Archival library. Once there, the person who I had contacted on the phone was no longer there, but surprise, the director came out to speak to me. A young man who had been an English major, he lead me through a winding path to his enclave office and there I presented my case. Patiently listening to me and my gyrations, he accepted the book into the library and it would be available in two months. Mission accomplished. If nothing else, the book had been placed. For some reason, those of us brought up in New York have a veneration for these monuments of culture, ie the Metropolitan Museum, the Frick Museum, the Museum of Modern Art and to even be a sliver within their whole is a piece of heaven. At least that was the programming which is part of me.
Afterwards, walked to the Apple store and had my Ipad 2 worked on and revamped. While there I called up my ex Maggie and she gave me the name for a Jewish prayer book I had previously requested as there were some Judaic bookstores on the west side. The conversation took an unexpected heavy twist, all part of the surrealistic landscape, but we eased out gracefully and then I called a friend Carole who lived on the West side in the 90's. She had just suffered a flooding in her WPB condo but insurance had come through for her. She recommended a couple of Judaic book stores in the neighborhood but time was rushing by, and I decided to follow Maggie's advice and eventually purchased it on Amazon. (End of Part 1)