My important todos today were about goodbye and about food. I was to meet Priya in the afternoon at Schmackary’s for cookies, “catching up” and to say goodbye. Afterwards Soh Ang took me to Nyonya, the Malaysian restaurant to have a last dinner together where we had our first one all the way back in July.
My serious intention was to get some errands done before meeting Priya at 3:30 in Hell’s Kitchen. I wanted to travel all the way downtown to go to Century 21 and to the nearby CD store. But like most days I didn’t manage to head out early enough to do that. So I changed my plan to doing errands on my way to Hell’s Kitchen. I made a first stop at Barnes & Noble and actually bought some gifts. A second stop was Lincoln Center where I bought another gift at the Met Opera store. They were just setting up a Christmas tree outside.
Then I walked to Columbus Circle to check out the holiday market there. I was looking for the woman who had made my big ring to get it better accustomed to my finger. I didn’t find her although her website says she should be there. But I found a stall selling German Bratwurst in a bun with toppings like on a hot dog, onions and sauerkraut. I think people who are selling German Bratwurst abroad should have visited Germany to see what a Bratwurst is served with – a crispy roll and mustard, nothing else. Otherwise they should not call it German.
I did not try the Bratwurst hotdog, nor the German gingerbread called Lebkuchen. I had a meatball slider instead and it reminded me that I still haven’t been to the Meatball Shop. How could I forget that. It is kind of a literary research. So I will still have to squeeze it in.
From Columbus Square I walked to Schmackary’s and found Priya there over a coffee and a Red Velvet Cookie. I got a Cappuccino and a Maple Bacon and for tomorrow a Peanut Butter. We were talking about one and a half hour, reviewing my time in New York and other things. Priya asked me what was the strangest thing I saw in New York. I didn’t find an answer to that. Maybe I will if I go through my Journal back home. It was so nice to meet Priya again. She called me a friend when we finally said goodbye and I asked her to give Astor and Pepper a hug from me.
On my way down to Chinatown to meet Soh Ang I made a stop at Kate’s Papeterie on Lafayette at Broome Street. It is by far the most creative paper shop I’ve ever seen.
Soh Ang was ordering plenty of food at Nyonya. We had two appetizers, very thin Malaysian pancakes with curry sauce to dip in and the local variety of a spring roll. And we had three main dishes: noodles with shrimps, coconut rice with chicken, eggs and pickles and sizzling tofu with minced pork and shrimp and vegetables. Unfortunately everything came together. Why don’t they serve the appetizers first and the entrees afterwards? So our table was totally packed with food. Everything was delicious. My favorites were the spring roll and the tofu, which had just the right consistency between soft and firm. We didn’t manage to finish our dishes of course. I rejected Soh Ang’s attempt to persuade me to an ice cream for dessert. I knew she would have taken a spoonful and left the rest to me.
On our way home Soh Ang asked me what I will miss most after leaving New York. I really don’t know. But there is a lot I will miss.