Monday, April 30, 2007

Washington Heights, Fort George Hill Between Dyckman Street and Fairview Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Yesterday, Sunday, I went on an adventure photowalk, which I define as going somewhere I've never been, for no other purpose than to walk it. I admit I have a low threshold for adventure.

My plan was to go two subway stops to Dyckman, then walk south on the curvy Hillside Avenue until it ends at Nagle and then walk Nagle back to Dyckman. This is the beginning of said adventure when I THOUGHT I was heading up Hillside.

Imagine my consternation when I got to, not Nagle, but Fairview Avenue and realized I'd walked up Fort George Hill instead. Below is a map with Fort George the right hand curvy street (filled in with red) and Hillside just to the left. As you can see, anyone could have made that mistake. By the way, all you downtown people, don't these streets look exotic? You'd think you were having an adventure, too. Just wait until I tell you about the guava sandwich I had.

But for now, please notice the feathery green trees up ahead. It was kind of cool and cloudy, but definitely spring and the leaves just coming out, pale and delicate.




Sunday, April 29, 2007

Upper West Side, West End Avenue at 97th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

End of the evening. Time to go on home.

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Upper West Side, Broadway at 100th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Here's a bonus photo illustrating Luka's comment in Thursday's post about the house on top of the Metro Diner.

Oh, and by the way, Luka and I had dinner last night at Turkuaz and that cab driver was tellling the truth. I highly recommend the calves' liver appetizer. Trust me.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Upper West Side, Broadway between 99th and 98th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

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Friday, April 27, 2007

Upper West Side, Broadway between 100th and 99th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

When I moved to West 110th Street in 1982, this theater (built in 1933, but reduced to showing porn in the 70s) had just been renovated and reopened as the Metro, a revival theater with one giant screen playing double bills that changed every day. It took me 10 minutes to get there walking fast and I got there often, sat in the front row, and got my movie education (this is in the olden days, kids, when the giant screen came to the floor and you could sit in the front row without straining your neck). The first movie I saw there on October 24, 1982 was Days of Heaven by the great director Terrance Malick.

The 80's were paradise for movie lovers, probably the 60's and 70's were, too, but I wasn't here. Great theaters all over town showing all kinds of stuff, prices low. Times changed, people started watching videos at home, and the theaters started closing. I don't remember the year the Metro chopped its beautiful interior in half and put two small screens in and started showing first run movies, but I remember it happening. I saw the last showing on the single screen and now I can't think what it was. An old silent film.

And now look. Store for Rent.

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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Upper West Side, 100th Street at Broadway


Mary Sargent © 2007 ……………………………………..click to enlarge


Across the street from Turkuaz is Metro Diner. You're probably not surprised to know that Metro Diner does not have a fancy website like Turkuaz does. In fact it has no website at all. You're probably not surprised. But I did find Plate of the Day food blog with a Metro entry, and I'm bookmarking it.

Every now and then I think about doing a food blog.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Upper West Side, Broadway at 100th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

On Earthday. after I had the acupressure pedicure and FL had a massage and after we'd strolled up Broadway to Henry's for dinner and then had dinner, we strolled back downtown to FL's car. It was that kind of evening. A strolling kind of evening, I mean. It's about 10:00, I think.

This is Turkuaz. Once a Turkish cab driver told me that this was one of the best places in New York for Turkish food.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Inwood, 215th Street Subway Stop, Looking West


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Still on the elevated subway platform at 215th Street, facing west, looking down.

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Inwood, 215th Street Subway Stop, Looking West


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Spring! Yesterday, Sunday, Earthday, my birthday, was a beauiful day, the second in a row after days and days of winter dragging on. Around 4:30 I headed downtown to Jade Spa to get an acupressure pedicure as a birthday treat.

I'm taking this shot standing on the elevated subway platform at 215th Street, looking west. That's Broadway where the gorgeous trees are planted. FL says she thinks they are Bradford pears and after looking at a few pictures online, I'm inclined to agree with her. Anyone disagree?

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Hudson Heights, 187th Street at Fort Washington Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

And now outside the vet's office, where I've come to get my cat food, a relieved patient is on his way home. Thank god that's over, I can hear him thinking. He did have some serious stitching on his back leg.

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Saturday, April 21, 2007

Hudson Heights, Fort Washington Avenue at 187th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

I'm really happy to be posting this photograph. Not a church, not a building, nothing you should take note of, it's a truck. (A truck!)

The shot reminds me a little of Stuart Davis's collages.

I said "a little".

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Friday, April 20, 2007

Hudson Heights, 185th Street Between Pinehurst and Fort Washington Avenues


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Tonight we're looking back where we came from, getting a view of the northern wall of the park. In the background are those Tudor style buildings on Pinehurst Avenue that we saw closeup several days ago.

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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Hudson Heights, 185th Street Between Pinehurst and Fort Washington Avenues


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

This is the Hebrew Tabernacle of Washington Heights which I photographed standing on the northern wall of Bennett Park, thus proving that the park is at least higher than the sidewalk.



And below is a detail. Note the little bird on the top branch whose shape echoes the shapes of the cutouts.


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

See map.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Can't Post Photo Dammit

This title has been used before, I'm sorry to say, but I'm not as distraught this time as I was before. I know that soon, probably tomorrow, Blogger will straighten itself out and the steady flow of photos will resume.

In the meantime, I'm consoling myself with LibraryThing.com. I'm not even giving you the link because it's dangerously addictive.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Hudson Heights, Bennett Park at Pinehurst Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 ……………………………….. click to enlarge

Here we have what can pass for a park in NYC: a few trees and a lot of pavement. You may wonder why I bother to post this photograph. It's because I want you to see where the highest natural point in Manhattan is, right here in this park. 265 feet above sea level. I'm not showing you the actual point, I'm showing you where it is. Bennett Park also has historical significance which you can read about here. And it's only two blocks long.

See map.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Hudson Heights, Pinehurst Avenue between 183rd and 185th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

A bit contrasty, would you say? Too contrasty? Well, as we used to defend ourselves in art school: I wanted it that way.

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Sunday, April 15, 2007

Hudson Heights, Pinehurst Avenue between 183rd and 185th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Last summer Flying Lady and I went to a restaurant on Pinehurst, a street I'd neither been on nor heard of. It was enchanting, a leafy secluded street away from traffic and other rude city noise and disruption. This happened before I started this blog and I've been looking forward to going back. Well, call me cranky, but this day I didn't see any enchantment at all. This architecture isn't at its best in the cold light of a late dragging winter. I'll come back later when it's more green and I'm in a better mood.

And by the way, the restaurant has closed.

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Hudson Heights, 183rd Street between Fort Washington and Pinehurst Avenues


Mary Sargent © 2007 ………… click to enlarge


As I was walking up Fort Washington Avenue wishing that the buildings weren't so ugly and boring, a man, seeing my camera, commented to me, nice buildings, huh? I can only think he meant that they were sturdy and not likely to fall down.

This building looks wildly decorative by contrast, but of course it's not on Fort Washington Avenue.

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Friday, April 13, 2007

Hudson Heights, 181st Street at Fort Washington Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge


Catfood time rolled around again on Tuesday, which usually means I go for a walk before I end up at the vet, and I decided rather than try to make a big splash, I would just take the subway to 181st Street walk up Fort Washington Avenue to Bennett Park and pick up the two tiny end streets north and south of the park. They're only about a quarter as long as a normal street, but they needed to be walked.

Here on the corner of 181 and Ft. Washington is the Fort Washington Collegiate Church, set in a valley down from the street. You might almost think it was a little village church if not for the looming building behind. If I were the sort of person to do such things, I could photoshop the building out of there, drop in a few trees and have you thinking you were in New England.

For those people who think the name of the church is odd, collegiate, I mean, here's the place to be informed. You're on your own looking up consistory.

Note: although we are beginning to despair of spring ever arriving, the green green grass and the little pansy plants on the church grounds tell us to have hope.

See map.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Gramercy, 21st Street at Park Avenue South


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Windows at the Calvary Church. And tiny new green buds. Please enlarge.

Those green buds are even more exciting to me than the first flowers. Um, because, let's see, the flowers come and go pretty fast, but the buds are the very beginning of a whole new spring, summer, fall event and, uh . . . hmm

Something symbolic here?

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Gramercy, 21st Street at Park Avenue South


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Calvary Episcopal Church built in 1848 by James Renwick. The AIA Guide to New York City calls it second-echelon Renwick. For a little history go here.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Gramercy, Gramercy Park South Between Irving Place and Third Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

This is the Brotherhood Synagogue on a Friday evening. It was built in 1859 as a Quaker meeting house, but later abandoned when they moved to another location (but why would they do that?). The building was due to be torn down in 1975, but saved at the last minute by the Brotherhood Synagogue and transformed into a temple. Thank you Brotherhood. And thanks to your sisters, too.

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Monday, April 09, 2007

Gramercy, Gramercy Park South between Park Avenue South and Third Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Here is the National Arts Club mentioned Saturday, two days ago. Architecture/history buffs go here. Good story buffs go here. This is the same story I recommended on Saturday but I know you didn't bother with it. Here's another chance. For a long(er) shot go here.

The heads on the medallions are of Shakespeare, Milton, Franklin, Goethe and Dante, not artists, as you might imagine. That's because the fa├žade was redone when it was owned by Samuel Tildon in the 1870s and the sculptures allude to his library. The National Arts Club acquired the house in 1906.

I'm an artist and this is the first I've heard of the National Arts Club. Must check out; they look pretty comfy in there.

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Sunday, April 08, 2007

Gramercy, Gramercy Park West between 21st and 20th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

These homes were built in the 1840's, and James Harper, former mayor of New York and founder of Harper Brothers lived here at No. 4 from 1847 until his death in 1869. Shortly before I took this photo a young mother with two young children went through the front door. Imagine living in a townhouse built in the 1840's in the middle of Manhattan. Here's a long shot. And here's a detail.

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

Gramercy, Gramercy Park North between Lexington Avenue and Park Avenue South


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Here we are at the iron fence of the most exclusive park in New York City, which is to say, it is private. Only local residents, those with a golden key, can enter. And inside this lovely park is the first flowering tree I have seen this year. I think it's a star magnolia, but that's just a guess. If anyone knows flowering trees, go to this closeup of the blossoms and let me know.

The park is only the size of a city block, from 21st to 20th and . . . well, I can't figure out how to describe the east and west borders in less than a couple of paragraphs, so just take a look at the map.

Here's a highly entertaining article from New York Magazine about the fight between the president of the National Arts Club, which you can see through the trees here (photo coming up) and the chairman of the Gramercy Park Trustees. It was written in 2000, and I have no idea what's going on now, but it's well worth reading anyway.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Gramercy, Lexington Avenue between 23rd and 22nd Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

I feel as if I'm facing a small army of truculent newspaper vendors.




Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge


And they won't take no for an answer.



Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Uh, oh.

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Thursday, April 05, 2007

Gramercy, 23rd Street at Lexington Avenue


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………click to enlarge

This is a small piece of a shot I took just to get the street sign – I take them every block so I can later figure out where I was. But when I saw the lovely Chrysler building in the background from 20 blocks away (it's on 42nd at Lexington), I had to show it to you. It's probably my favorite building in New York and I love the way you can catch glimpses of it all over the East Side.

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Gramercy, Park Avenue South at 23rd Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

Last Friday, after work, I subwayed two stops to 23rd Street to get some vitamins, and went for a walk around Gramercy Park. See how light it is? Around this time of year, I get a little thrill when I leave the office and it's still light.

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Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Inwood, Park Terrace East at 215th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

And so back home. And what's this then? Some of you have seen this building before, but now there is a large painting in front of the door, adding a lovely surreal touch. Here's a close-up of the art.

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Monday, April 02, 2007

Washington Heights, Broadway Between 165th and 166th Streets


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

So back to civilization. My first opportunity to exit Riverside Drive was at 165th Street, and exit I did, and walked back to Broadway so I could take the subway at 168th Street. Across the street was this very fancy building. Hm, says I. Could that be—is that the Audubon Ballroom? But this isn't Harlem. Okay, now I know the Audubon Ballroom is not in Harlem; it is in Washington Heights. Just doesn't seem right.
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For a history of the building, click here. Don't expect to read much about Malcolm X though; this writer is writing about the building. For a wider shot of the building, click here. For a close-up of the arch above the doorway, click here.


See map.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Washington Heights, Riverside Drive Between George Washington Bridge and 165th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

And here you have an entrance to a parking garage; I think it's the garage for the New York State Psychiatric Institute and Hospital which is across the street.

Notice the two people behind the green mesh. I have no idea what that is or why they're there or how they got there, and I didn't even know they were there until I got a closer look at the photo on my monitor. It is not unusual for me to discover things later in my photographs that I wasn't aware of at the time. It's also not unusual for me to want to go back to the site to check out things I learned after I got home. But that'll have to wait until I finish the first complete walk. Ten or fifteen years or so.

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Washington Heights, Riverside Drive Between George Washington Bridge and 165th Street


Mary Sargent © 2007 …………………………………….. click to enlarge

I think the road above is access to or egress from the GW Bridge. I think.

If you should happen to consult the map link below, be aware that the Riverside Drive numbers are all screwed up here and the star does not indicate the proper location on the Drive; it's farther north. I guess there really aren't proper addresses in a location where there are no buildings.

Does anyone ever consult the map link?

See map.