Last night, the question of where Mike and I should go on a long weekend when we finally emerge from our respective work hells arose. This brings up the idea of the nostalgia trip, which I believe I’ve mentioned before. I have a very specific route around New York City, a circuit which, it must be admitted, I always travel at least once when I go there. It covers all the important sites from my various stints there at ages sixteen, seventeen, and twenty: the apartment building where I broke that one law, the underground bar where I broke that other law, Washington Square Park, where I sat and wrote poetry and had my first panic attack, the restaurant with the amazing apple pie, the street that I ran across one night to make my black velvet cape flare out behind me because I WAS A SUPER COOL SEVENTEEN-YEAR-OLD OK?
I will make these stops whether or not I have anyone with me, but I will especially make them if I’ve got someone to tell the anecdotes to, in an attempt to explain the sort of kid I was and how I became the person I am now.
Everybody’s got that place that has near mythological importance in their own lives. Showing someone else is both nerve-wracking, because it’s this new layer of revelation and openness, and disappointing, because the things that are so glorious to the person who lived with them at crucial moments in their lives (the Indian restaurants on 6th Street that were the height of luxury for me as a broke vegetarian) are completely mundane to anyone experiencing them for the first time as a more worldly adult.
This fall may not wind up being the right time for that particular nostalgia trip, though. New York is much better in late spring, when the cherry blossoms are in bloom. So, friends, if we want to get on a plane and go somewhere not cold for three or four days in November, where should that place be? LA and Florida are both out due to awfulness. What do you recommend?