I’ll Trade You Two Ice Creams for A Bus Ticket

-I left St. Croix last week for my yearly excursion to New York City, my former home. Gentrification is everywhere. While savoring a $6 scoop of gelato, on the Lower East Side, ( when gelato was known only as ice cream ), I noticed this very old sign, still affixed to a very old building.

-Before Orange Alert and Heightened Security Warnings, there were fallout shelters. They were essentially windowless, basement rooms in apartment buildings, suitable for bike and camp trunk storage. In the event of threat of Soviet Missiles aimed at our city, we could descend to this subterranean den and survive on its’ well stocked larder: Bottled water, crackers, toilet paper and aspirin!

Initiated by then governor Nelson Rockerfeller, an expample of fifteen million of our 1958 tax dollars well spent to protect our citizenry from radioactive fallout with acetaminophen.

-I thought about the extremes in contrast this urban mecca is. Adjacent to the Lower East Side is Chinatown where you can buy a bus ticket from NYC to Boston, 200 miles, for a meager $15 on the Fung Wah Bus.

-Somewhere in the middle of too little and too much is just perfect- The Union Square Greenmarket, where you can buy organic cheese, chickens, eggs, beef, breads, pastries, flowers, varieties of carrots in Crayola colors and fresh lavender tied in fatly compacted bundles.

– These really caught my eye: Varieties of RADISHES! Who knew?

-By the time radishes, plain, red, pedestrian radishes reach St. Croix, asphyxiated by plastic wrap and their 10 day journey across the sea, they’re bitter, old, and ready for the compost heap.

Next week starts the museum circuit with my good friend, host and marvelous artist Judith Wolfe.

She defers to my epicurean tastes, and I in turn, get the lowdown on the best movie reviews, museum shows and all things New York.

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19 Responses to “I’ll Trade You Two Ice Creams for A Bus Ticket”

  1. carol king Says:

    $6.00 for a gelato!!!!!! Theives!

    While $15.00 sounds good for a bus to Boston, they don’t mention the fact that most of their buses roll over on the highway and the bus drivers only speak Chinese!

    Matt spilled a whole glass of beer on the keyboard and now all the keys are sticking. How can I fix this? You know how long it took me to write this comment? UGH!

  2. Jennifer Says:

    Love the lavendar photo. Next to it, the radishes almost take on a purple hue. Have fun with Judy. We had a blast at the zoo with her yesterday.

  3. nathaliewithanh Says:

    You are ALIVE!!!! And well-protected! You do not even have to travel with your own personal duct tape and plastic sheeting. I’m reassured now. You should however stock up on the French radishes just in case, mon amie…

  4. bonnieluria Says:

    Jennifer- thanks for leaving a comment here. I’m awed by your knitting prowess and terrific blog.
    I couldn’t knit a 2″ square.

  5. bonnieluria Says:

    Nathalie- I am indeed alive and filling up my cultural tank. It’s a lot more than $4 a gallon to do that.
    Your last posting was a huge success, and by now, your lovely subject must be fending off tabloids and interviewing agents for movie deals.

  6. Marian Fortunati Says:

    You have such a wonderful and interesting vision of the world around you… where ever you are. I love reading your blog! Great photos too!

  7. Nancy Moskovitz Says:

    Love your post. I remember the fall out shelters well. Radishes make more sense. Culture up.

  8. bonnieluria Says:

    Thanks Marian- I’ve returned to this city with a new pair of eyes and now I have tourists’ neck!
    I’ve been taking it all in as though I never lived here.
    I’m glad you find this babble of mine interesting. It only encourages me to post more!

    Hi Nancy- how have you found a moment to put that new baby down?
    There are times I approach a new blog entry with a vacuum in my head and no thoughts about where it’s going and then as soon as I look at the photos, the theme starts to gel.
    Thanks for popping in here and leaving your message.

  9. w1kkp Says:

    Oh, oh, oh…those radishes remind me of that old musical…what was the name? The Fantastics!! Song, “Plant a radish, get a radish….” “Try to Remember” was the signature song. Just looked it up on the internet:

    Plant a radish.
    Get a radish.
    Never any doubt.
    That’s why I love vegetables;
    You know what you’re about!

    Plant a turnip.
    Get a turnip.
    Maybe you’ll get two.
    That’s why I love vegetables;
    You know that they’ll come through!

    They’re dependable!
    They’re befriendable!
    They’re the best pal a parent’s ever known!
    While with children,
    It’s bewilderin’.
    You don’t know until the seed is nearly grown
    Just what you’ve sown.

    So
    Plant a carrot,
    Get a carrot,
    Not a Brussels sprout.
    That’s why I love vegetables.
    You know what you’re about!

    Life is merry,
    If it’s very
    Vegetarian!
    A man who plants a garden
    Is a very happy man!

    Plant a beanstalk.
    Get a beanstalk.
    Just the same as Jack.
    Then if you don’t like it,
    You can always take it back!

    But if your issue
    Doesn’t kiss you,
    Then I wish you luck.
    For once you’ve planted children,
    You’re absolutely stuck!

    Every turnip green!
    Every kidney bean!
    Every plant grows according to the plot!

    While with progeny,
    It’s hodge-podgenee.
    For as soon as you think you know what kind you’ve got,
    It’s what they’re not!

    So
    Plant a cabbage.
    Get a cabbage.
    Not a sauerkraut!
    That’s why I love vegetables.
    You know what you’re about!

    Life is merry
    If it’s very
    Vegetarian.
    A man who plants a garden
    Is a very happy man!

    A vegitari-
    Very merry
    Vegetarian!

    Yup, this is what you get with your older fan club. Comments longer than the post!!

    Did I read Museum week is coming up!!!! Oh, Goody! Did you see the waterfalls yet? They looked very odd on TV, but probably fantastic in their way.

  10. bonnieluria Says:

    Google is the antidote to memory loss.
    Never again will a forgotten lyric produce sleepless nights.
    I didn’t know those lyrics and now I can see why it was the longest running show off Bway for decades.
    It’s in synch with the longest running comment!

    Going to the Neue Gallery today, the Asia Society and the Cooper Hewitt tomorrow and then who knows.
    Waterfalls may or may not happen.

  11. Paulette Says:

    Great pictures. I’ve never been to NY but I just loved going to Toronto. The streets always seemed so alive. I hope you are having a grand time.

  12. Noel Luria Says:

    I am SO relieved that there are pictures on this posting with a ‘tropical’ feel to them, excluding the fallout shelter of course… the fiscal fallout of 6 dollar frozen sugar water….

  13. Sharon Crute Says:

    Love the fallout photo. Reminds me of sticking my head between my knees in second grade – in preparation for thermonuclear attack. Heavens, I just gave my age away, didn’t I?

    Been a long time since I strolled down 5th from the Metropolitan to Washington Square while perusing museums and galleries of choice along the way. I’m in envy, Bonnie. Savor every minute…

  14. Nava Says:

    Great photos, great blog. Ahh, you make me miss Saint Croix so much. We went there on a wonderful vacation a couple of years ago, stayed at one of the best B&Bs ever (Carrington’s, neat Christiansted) – must be very inspiring to actually live on the island.

  15. bonnieluria Says:

    Sharon- are you in Saratoga now?
    Yes, I’m loving being here ( minus the noise levels which I’d forgotten about ). I’m eager too, to be home and in the studio again.
    I recall those days of heads under desks too. How’s that for adequate protection?

    Nava- thanks for visiting. Seems you’re making your adjustment to the US really well. Not an easy thing to do.
    Carrington’s – a terrific hideaway and would give anyone a great impression of St. Croix.

  16. Sharon Crute Says:

    Bonnie, I deliver paintings to Saratoga on the 22nd. Guess we’ll be ships in the night…

  17. Paz Says:

    You’ve been all over! LOL! There used to be one of those Shelter signs on my building. It’s since been removed.

    Paz

  18. wrjones Says:

    Liked the photos and the poem.

  19. Jala Pfaff Says:

    Bonnie, I LOVE the lavender photo!!!! And I forgot to tell you the other day, I also love your Jazz Man painting.

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