17 September 2007

lunedì mattina

Bay Ridge was interesting this morning.

Some big time movie shoot is happening down in Shore Road park at 79th street. There were Haddad's trucks and trailers for about five or six blocks along Shore Road. The catering tent is right outside The Redemptorists; those monks are gonna pissed with all that hullabaloo going on outside their dorm. I spied coffee steam billowing beneath a pile of fresh croissants, a cop at an omelet station and fresh fruit covering nearly every remaining flat surface.

But as we turned from Shore Road onto Bay Ridge Avenue with the lazy September sun rising from the pier behind us, I saw something very sad.

There was a big fire last night which seems to have destroyed several houses between that brick apartment building on the corner and those ugly new condos on the right. Nearly every morning I'd see this woman, by herself, still in her pajamas, raising the gates for the Perfect Deli. Like our schedules were aligned. I was on the bus on my way to work at the exact time she was arriving to her deli and opening up for the day; this little tiny hole-in-the-wall spot which catered to pier fisherman, gawkers and tourists, bikers, joggers, Xaverian peoples, and pretty much everyone down that end of the hood who was too lazy to walk up to Colonial Road. The deli was destroyed. I could see the potato chip rack melted in half. All the windows were smashed out, all three floors of the building and the building next door with all sorts of debris and bedding that the firemen must've thrown from the windows, now laying in a soggy heap corralled by yellow tape.

A wild tale of tragic juxtaposition. The start of two very different days, blocks apart.

One where bloated celebs and ten million production assistants were getting paid to sit around, drink coffee and eat croissants before a day of filming a multi-million dollar movie while just a few blocks away someones little store was destroyed in a fire, peoples homes leveled; their lives upended and in a blink left with nothing.

Excess and dearth. Fantasy and reality.

A baby is born, an old man dies. The way of the world is lows and highs. Right? Evidently so.

1 comment:

ramona said...

this is why i think you are amazing.

xo