I wrapped up a week of meetings in NYC and headed to “DUMBO” in Brooklyn to meet two of the planet’s best people and their kind of new baby. Dumbo stands for something under Manhattan Brooklyn bridge. You can probably Google it.
I’d never been there since that name was coined. In fact, I asked the concierge at the place I was staying where the 1/9 train was. She said there is no 9 train. There’s a 1/2/3. I felt old. But the 3 got me from 14th & 7th to Clark St in Brooklyn in about 10 minutes. I was shocked how close it was.
I was early so I went to the Clark Diner. I knew I’d like the place. A sign on the door stated: NO LAPTOPS. Which pretty much set the stage for the joint. It was a no frills diner like you’d find on Route 1 in NJ. Pots of coffee. Rotating cake display. Counter-top service. Rotating stools.
I had a black coffee and chocolate ice cream. My bill was $3.85. It’s 2013. I didn’t know anything in New York cost less than a fiver.
I met my friends and we wandered the streets of America’s oldest suburb, Brooklyn heights, before dropping down to the river.
The view is amazing, looking across to governors island, the Statue of Liberty, and the maw of the Staten Island ferry terminal. There’s a landscaped park being constructed on the water and not a needle or corpse in sight.
We wandered up river, through the park to an old light house that served ice cream. As I was still digesting my ice cream from Clark’s, we went around to the lobster shack. I got a trio of rolls: lobster, crab, shrimp. They were good. Maybe lacking a bit of oomph — bay seasoning? Salt? Something.
The weather was beginning to turn and I needed a trim for my fledgling beard. I’d read about Pearl Street Barber in DUMBO, which turned out to be right around the corner. We headed that way, stopping en route for a chocolate gelato at a little Italian ice cream cart on the esplanade. It was a lot better than the brown ice at Clark’s.
Pearl street barbers was perfect. No wait, and a Russian woman trimmed and chopped my beard with skill and precision. I no longer looked like a Taliban fighter. She even rubbed my head and neck with a hot towel. That felt amazing. She quickly clean up some rogue hairs on the back of my neck and I was on my way. The whole thing cost me $15.
My friends had taken their baby next door to a café. I met them there and it was time to head our separate ways. I hopped on the F train, which. 15 minutes later had me at 23rd street. Again, it’s really close.
If you’re in mid town Manhattan and want something different, do this. Go down there. Get some great views. Have an ice cream. Buy stuff for under a fiver. It’s pretty incredible and a welcome escape.