Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Coney Island, Baby

Today we're visiting Coney Island, New York's fairground beach on the south side of Brooklyn facing the North Atlantic ocean. Once a prime attraction with up to a million people on the beach, it's by no means deserted but the attractions of the Cyclone roller-coaster and a day a the beach have diminished.

We start, as one does, with tasty treats from the "Nathan's Famous" hot dog store, built for crowds.

Rows of ketchup and mustard

A Chili Dog

Fried Frogs' Legs
Most of the beach's rides don't open until 12 midday, bike riding on the boardwalk is only permitted from 5am to 10am, and there's no swimming allowed until the lifeguards turn up at 10am. Fortunately there is a part dedicated to works of wall art for us to look at in the morning.

Behind this area is the new Thunderbolt roller-coaster which looks both more and less dangerous than the old Cyclone. Physics or wear-and-tear, take your pick.

The boardwalk is a pleasant perambulation, with several play areas inviting patrons to get hustled by buying ride credits and wrist-bands with fine print restricting their use.

The surrounding area was historically settled by Russians, and advertising billboards and signs are still written in both Russian and English. There is a flea market and some signs of renewal.

The train ride takes the best part of an hour, so we get back to Chelsea mid-afternoon and caffeinate until it's time to head down to NoHo for our evening meal.

Gabba Gabba Hey
Tonight we're eating at Le Philosophe restaurant, near to all the smart people from New York University. Apparently if you can name all the philosophers pictured on the wall, you eat for free. It's a genuine Frenchish bistro, strong on French cuisine and wine. I go with a pate de fois gras followed by a nice veal casserole - pardon, Foie Gras Torchon followed by a Blanquette de Veau. Lynda has a Salade Verte which looks very like green leaves followed by Tournedos Rossini, or steak dinner,

We were intending to go to a late movie, but a detour to Hudson Bar and Books made us feel a little tired for some reason and that was all he wrote.

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