Where does the good go

Summer. In the City.

I love my apartment. It took a year and a half to find, a year to renovate, but three and a half years later, I’m pleased as punch with it.
However, being as close as I am to a highway, on one side, and Brooklyn’s Prospect Park on another, there really isn’t a neighborhood, to speak of, nearby. Which again, speaking as a woman who lives at the far end of a hallway on one of the highest floors in the highrise, is just fine by me. If I have to walk to the grocery store or the pharmacy, I’m there and back lickety split, no muss, no annoying people cluttering up the sidewalk.
During the summer months, there are more kids than usual playing in front of my building, but hey, that’s what kids do in the summer. (Right? Or am I surrounded by mutant, zombie children of some kind. Please advise.)
Anyway, after reading about a new Indian food restaurant in my old hood, I decided to head over there and check it out.
(Note, you might have bought too much car, if you would prefer to walk twenty minutes in each direction, rather than put Indian food in your car.)
It was a nice night and the transformation from Kensington’s empty streets to the rowdier streets of East Flatbush is immediately noticeable as you pass the train station. Men shooting dice, girls in tight shorts singing (what I assume to be) the latest R&B hits. It is 8 o’clock at night and there are people *everywhere.*
There are infinitely more stores and restaurants than I remember; one shop was fixing its awning, as I walked by.
“Watch out, mama, if this thing slips, it’ll more than mess up your hair,” one of the workers shouted down to me.
I went first to the Indian place and ordered. I asked how far they delivered.
“Ten blocks. Where do you live?”
I smiled.
“More than ten blocks.”
He said my order would take 10-12 minutes and invited me to sit down.
“Nah,” I said, holding up my Blockbuster DVD, “I gotta go to the videostore.”
Again, I noticed the bustle of an actual *neighbor*hood. The bar doors were open, so the sounds of the television spilled out into the night, men were hanging out in the bodega storefronts.
Ooh, a new Dunkin’ Donuts!
I’ve always said East Coco Beach needed more donuts!
I returned “Camp” to the Blockbuster and picked up Push. (I have a feeling, this is a step down, not that “Camp” was all that great…but still, an angsty teenageish Dakota Fanning…we’ll see.)
I walked back to King of Tandoor on the other side of Flatbush than the one I had walked down.
I was counting the blocks between my mom’s house and the restaurant.
This path took me right past “Errol’s” (a name I have only learned since the Ugarleses moved across the street. For the 27 years prior to that it was called “the raisin bun place by Betty,” after the food I always get there and my Godmother who lived around the corner. “Errol’s” is easier.)
I stopped in to get my raisin bun (seriously, diet starts next Monday. I totally mean it, this time.)
I discovered what gentrification really means: my fifty cent bun is now SEVENTY-FIVE cents!!!! White people and their disposable income! Aarrgggh.
It had been 25 minutes since I left the restaurant, so I ran the last two blocks, lest they give away my food.
Unfortunately, King of Tandoor is not the King of Hurrying the hell up, so my meal was still not ready.
Dude offered me a seat again, this time I took it. The place was packed…well, about 3/4 full…still pretty good for a restaurant in the ghetto on a Monday night! The diners were very eclectic too (read: not black. Though there was one black woman with her baby in a caboose thing on her back.) I checked out the menu while I waited and chuckled about the misunderstanding regarding their sale of “roti” which would be sure to transpire.
As I waited, one of the guys brought out one of those Indian yogurt, mango drinks for me.
“For your waiting.”
I took it.
They were staring at me, so I took a sip.
Yep. Yogurt, mangoey.
I smiled and nodded.
I wondered how much I could drink and hold in my mouth without swallowing – but without letting them know that’s what I was doing.
Thankfully, my food came out before I had to figure it out.
The King of Tandoor is also not the King of being honest about their discounts.
According to the article Zinester linked on the Hawthrone Street blog, they offered 50% off on opening day and then 25% off for the next week.
He was charging me full price.
“Um…isn’t there a discount?”
“Oh, yes. Sorry.”
Uh huh.
Gentrification schmentrification, people will always try to rip you off!

8 Responses to “Summer. In the City.”

  1. fisch Says:

    Push starts off interesting AND THEN BECOMES HORRRRRRIBLE. Have fun.

  2. Astin Says:

    You don’t like mango lassi? For shame! One of the few forms of mango I actually like.

    Don’t drink the lemon ginger drink though. Unless you really like ginger.

    What’s a ghetto? We don’t have those in Toronto. Just projects… which are pretty nice… during the day… in your car… driving quickly.

  3. Tae Says:

    “I was counting the blocks between my mom’s house and the restaurant.”

    So, you’re going to have your food delivered to your mom’s house, and then have your mom bring it to you? Good luck with that. :p

  4. Dawn Summers Says:

    No, I only like mango in fruit form or in daiquiri form. That is true for all fruit actually, excet watermelon. There is no such thing as watermelon daiquiri.

  5. Dawn Summers Says:

    @tae hahaha Yeah, as if. I just wanted to see if they’d go that far…but I lost count a couple of times and came up with either 8 blocks, 9 blocks, 10 blocks or 13 blocks…#countingFail

  6. Tae Says:

    “There is no such thing as watermelon daiquiri.”


  7. Ugarles Says:

    Why didn’t you stop by with Indian snacks?

    I’m sure they would have delivered to your mom. Or to Gentrification Manor, if you needed a place to wait.

  8. Dawn Summers Says:

    I woulda, but I’m scared of sidney’s dog. :(

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