Roaming the Upper West Side


I walked forty blocks from Columbia University’s Journalism School to a friend’s apartment on the Upper West Side the other day. It took longer than I thought it would, and it became colder than I thought it would get, but I’m obsessed with taking advantage of New York whenever it’s warm by walking as much as I can. On the Upper West Side, the avenues are long and the streets are calm. The apartment buildings tony and majestic, the sidewalks crowded with cafes and bakeries. I feel serene, if not a little bored, in this neighborhood. There’s an older Jewish feeling here, and not too much diversity until you reach the buzzing upper echelons of Harlem. There, I laugh at the street vendors, promise the Senegalese hair-braiding women I’ll come back another time and walk and walk.

Photo by Paul Riley


Comment 1

  1. blackwatertown May 11, 2010

    Good approach. I was walking with a friend round London’s east end last week after dark. It was unexpectedly warm. We walked slowly – a beat police officer’s pace. No rush. Taking in the buildings, the people, the changes. It feels good.
    I like wandering round New York too on the rare opportunities that come my way. Even in November you can sometimes find a small angular patch of sunshiney pavement (sidewalk) on which to sit outside and eat – or on somebody’s steps.

    Like the picture by the way.

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