The Unbearable Banishment: Loch Central Park

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Loch Central Park

I took one of the last warm days of the season off from work and dragged 7-Year Old Daughter into the city. Again. She's been there quite a few times now and walks around like she owns the place. It's pretty funny. She has developed a comfort level with the city, which is by design.

Renting a row boat on Central Park Lake is probably The Most Touristy thing you can do, but it's a fantastic experience. I've lost count of how many times I've done it. It's still a thrill. And it only costs about $10 bucks! So worth it. The Central Park row boats and the landmark Carousel are absolute musts on a warm day. You're never too old for that stuff.

I like watching clueless city people try to row a boat. They often row incorrectly; with the stern of the boat going forward. The bow of the boat cuts through the water quite nicely but for some reason, dopey New Yorkers prefer the struggle of trying to push the stern through water. Perhaps it's in their nature to make things more difficult than they need to be.

Here we are at beautiful Bethesda Fountain. Did you see Tony Kurshner's Angels in America? This fountain plays an important role. There's a charming song-and-dance number in The Daughter's favorite movie, Enchanted, that features the fountain.

If you row out to the middle of the lake you can get a spectacular view of the luxury hotels along Central Park South. For being in the middle of New York City, the lake is actually quite big.

Many years ago, my brother was visiting and I took a photo of him rowing. When I got the pictures developed, I discovered that I accidentally got a shot of his testicle hanging out of his shorts! Do you guys want to see it?

If you visit Central Park mid-week you'll witness a phenomenon called "The Leisure Class." These are people who hang out in the city all day and have no visible means of support. They don't have proper jobs. And these are not tourists! They're locals! Look how crowded Sheep Meadow is on a Thursday afternoon. Where do they get the money to live like this? Arrrgghh.

Random architectural flourish. Click on that and take a look at the latticework. Nice!

I heart New York. Always have. Probably always will.



Blogger Leah said...

Oh wow! I am so going to do this with Hedgehog. She would love it. Thankfully, I know how to row a boat properly--we have a nice old behemoth upstate, but there isn't very far to row--just to a swamp and back. Doing that in the middle of the city would be so neat.

You have given me, a lifelong NYer, some great ideas--I love reading your blog.

October 6, 2009 at 8:59 AM  
Blogger Sid said...

thanks for putting up pictures of your city =) Love looking at it and day dreaming about NY.

October 6, 2009 at 9:09 AM  
Anonymous popomatic jeff said...

Great pics. As for the park people in the middle of the day, they must work the night shifts.

October 6, 2009 at 10:11 AM  
Blogger C F said...

Thanks for a glimpse of one of the many pleasures of life in the city. Last time I was in the Park it was raining hard and I was drenched - still, it was lovely.
Love your blog.

October 6, 2009 at 11:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ever since i saw the film version of "Hair", i wanted to ride horses in central park... do they still have stables?

October 6, 2009 at 1:11 PM  
Blogger Lori said...

If I ever forget for a moment how much I heart NYC, your blog will always remind me. So glad I found you!

October 6, 2009 at 1:36 PM  
Blogger Please Don't Eat With Your Mouth Open said...

Cant wait to see all this when I get to NY. Except I'm rubbish at rowing. Will have to bag myself one of those non-working people in the park to do it for me.

October 6, 2009 at 5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice pics UB.

I did see "Angels in America" and the scenes with the fountain in question.

It always amuses me to see city folk "in the wild". Of course, I'm kind of snobbish that way.

October 6, 2009 at 9:24 PM  
Blogger The Unbearable Banishment said...

Leah: I always try to look through the eyes of the tourists. They know.

Sid: Happy to provide the distraction.

Jeff: Sure *some* of them are third-shifters, but EVERYONE? I'm not convinced.

CF: Thanks for your kind words. There's plenty to do indoors when it rains!

Daisy: There are still carriages, but there's a lot of heat to shut down the business. It's a cruelty to animals issue.

Lori: Happy to have you as a reader, as well. No charge!

Jo: Make a list. I'll personally take you around.

Rob: Be kind. They don't know any better. It's funny as hell to watch, though.

October 6, 2009 at 9:30 PM  
Blogger ~E said...

I love Enchanted! And I will definitely have to hit you up for non-touristy, touristy tips when I visit there again.

October 7, 2009 at 1:18 AM  
Blogger A Free Man said...

Maybe they work nights? Or maybe it is the cast and extras of Gossip Girl.

October 7, 2009 at 2:00 AM  
Blogger Tennyson ee Hemingway said...

How can anyone possibly push the stern through the water? It doesn't make any sense. My wife has rowed for years and she would'nt even talk to you if she caught you doing this.

October 7, 2009 at 2:44 AM  
Anonymous nursemyra said...

Yes of course I want to see a photo of your brother's testicles.....

October 7, 2009 at 3:42 AM  
Blogger Cat said...

Maybe they're just skipping work on a beautiful day to hang out at the park with their kid.

October 7, 2009 at 9:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a great time rowing there when I was on holiday in NYC a few years ago. There was a wedding party at the edge having their photos taken and we kept rowing behind them to try and get into the photos.
The Bethesda fountain is my favourite fountain in the world, ever since I saw Angels In America. It was amazing to see it in person. So beautiful.

October 7, 2009 at 1:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I started laughing so hard I couldn't even finish reading. Shit that was so unexpected.

October 8, 2009 at 7:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really think yo need to start writing a book for NY tourist! And no testicle please I would never be able to look him in the eye again.

October 8, 2009 at 2:03 PM  
Anonymous Nurse H said...

I'm with Nurse Myra. Great nurses' minds think alike!

October 9, 2009 at 10:26 AM  
Blogger Blues said...

Jesus. Didn't you guys notice that those shorts were going to be a problem before you left home?? It must have been the 80s. Those OC shorts everyone used to wear with their balls on the brink of liberation. I have to quote Elaine Bennice on this one: "I don't know how you guys walk around with those things."

October 17, 2009 at 11:42 AM  
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