I hail a cab from JFK to “Williamsburg.” Apparently the definition of that word has drastically changed since the cabbie driver asks about the Kosciuszko exit. I redirect him to Bedford and South 4th. Eventually New York swings into view and it’s still recognisably the skyline. But there’s lights from skyscrapers that are utterly foreign to my memory.
The cold seeps up through the wood floors of the apartment and my toes gradually freeze. I do nothing to hinder its creep. The morning Times lie on the table along with Darjeeling tea and a quick flip through the Styles section reveals a Bill Cunningham piece reviewing hats. Taking a hint, I grab my own and head into the city for brunch with old friends.
Afterwards, the cold calls for a coffee at DEAN & DELUCA. I wander down Spring and then back up Prince. The memories and moment come flooding back, right down to the Book of Salt, my “last burger” sitting on the stairs of an empty store, and a tense walk to the Bowery stop.
I veer back up to the L train and head back to Williamsburg. I used to belong and now displaced. Like a ghost, I comb the streets of my old Brooklyn life and these old haunts.
Text & Photography: Mr. Vagabond