Eau de East River Esplanade

Aron has been taking Hudson on a lot of early morning strolls lately (one of them is getting a new tooth) and he wandered out to the East River the other day. He came back with some lovely photos, showing me what I was missing out there, in the 5 o’clock hour. We decided to make a return trip together on Monday morning and let Hudson nap in the stroller while we walked down to the Brooklyn Bridge.

As we are apt to do these days, we gesticulated wildly at the bridges and the buildings and the Brooklyn skyline and were all “This place is amazing!” “We’re going to miss it so much! It’s the Capitol of the World!” The newer stretches of pathway are so great, and were filled with joggers and commuters and, later on, Tai Chi practitioners.

Down by Wall Street, we stopped and admired the recently-built structure at Pier 15, a lovely addition to the public spaces along the made-over East River Esplanade (part of the city’s East River Waterfront project, wherein a continuous “greenway” will run from 125th Street all the way down to the Battery). And Hudson stared inquisitively at the helicopters flying in and out of the harbor.

But before all that, we first had to get past the trash-truck’s drip trail.

“What is that smell?!” Aron stopped to examine a puddle and it was quite possibly the most-disgusting thing ever. We’re talking maggots. It was certainly the most disgusting smell, ever. Essentially, the trash track was dripping all the compacted garbage as it moved along the river, and every time it paused to by a trashcan to load its contents, it would accumulate the drippings into one putrid puddle. Every few minutes we’d find ourselves plugging our noses and gagging.

Finally out of the path of the wafting fumes, we were left to enjoy the walk and views once more when suddenly we found ourselves in the midst of deafening construction near the old Fulton Fish Market. I literally started to run with the stroller to pass by as quickly as possible but it went on for what seemed like forever and Hudson woke up. So much for that!

All you can do is laugh: “New York spit in my mouth!” we joked. You can’t escape the love/sick dichotomy: In fact, I think it was only a few days earlier that we were walking to breakfast and extolling the virtues of the East Village when we passed a man peeing.

[P.S. Having a baby in Manhattan]

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