Don’t Cry for Me, East Village

May 30, 2008 at 8:04 am 4 comments

As I prepare for my move to Harlem, it is with a teary gaze that I wave goodbye to the East Village. EV, you were a blast. You may have provided me with a small apartment, an infestation of mice, a gay neighbor with awful taste in music (but a fabulous sub-woofer), as well as close proximity to the 9th precinct’s sirens, but we had some good times. You gave me with a 10 minute walk to class, a liquor store that never carded, and the false belief that I was an artist contributing to the community- despite the fact that i was probably gentrifying it more than anything else.


So cheers, East Village, for the good times and the bad. In honor of our 1 year love affair, I proffer a list of the neighborhood’s bestest things. I pass them onto you, in no particular order, in the hopes that you’ll enjoy them as much as I have.

1. Ramen Setagaya
I am very aware of the East Village ramen wars, but after going to all except Momofuku, I still say Setagaya is my fave. Go there when you’re sick- their noodles truly have magical healing properties.

2. Saint’s Alp
It’s too bad I only recently started going here. Their bubble tea is consistently good, cheap, and quick. Ask for the unsweetened black tea with tapioca, because it’s like heaven in a plastic cup.

3. Tompkin’s Square Park
God, where to begin? This will be the hardest one to leave of all. With its farmers’ markets, abundance of cute children and crack heads galore, Tompkins was definitely a big part of my life. Hopefully this isn’t the end for us, but the parks uptown do have competitively bigger lawns…

4. Cafe Pick Me Up
This is the best cafe to write your paper in, hands down. Their lack of internet service really forces you to get your shit done, and their quirky use of old school desks creates this bohemian/librarian vibe. Get a tea and just keep asking for re-fills. Also, their little round white cookies are delicious.

The NYPL on the north side of Tompkins Square Park was where I’d get movies, cook books, and take a break from the rest of the world. Public libraries are comforting that way. I’ll miss this one. It was so hip I could check out “Brazil” and a Nigella Lawson cookbook in one visit.

6. East River Park
Whenever I was feeling anxious or upset, before I knew it, my feet would be taking me to East River Park. It’s too bad I’m leaving now that construction is finished. They have a great track, and a great view.

7. Atlas Cafe
Instead of buying groceries, I would just go to Atlas Cafe. Their food is always good, they keep their prices low, and their menu is probably the size of a small country. I highly recommend their couscous with honey and raisins for a nice, sit-down breakfast.

So there it is, my little diamonds in the rough. The hardest part about moving is knowing that you’ll have to find new places, new spots to call your own. I doubt Harlem will have great coffee shops, but hey, at least I’ll get to practice my Spanish.


Entry filed under: Miscellaneous Musings, Olivia. Tags: , , , , , , .

Google-y Eye Themes Michael Cera

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. alisaurus  |  May 30, 2008 at 10:47 am

    can you put the approximate locations of these places? i’d like to check ’em out!

  • 2. Tim Cameron  |  May 30, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    Betty and I had a lovely day in Tompkin Square Park. I remember someone had wreathed the trees with colourful flower garlands. Pretty.

  • 3. Olivia  |  May 30, 2008 at 1:57 pm

    oo yeah, i think the only link that doesnt have the address is saints alp, and that one’s on third and 10th.

    Also, the trees with the garlands is my favorite place in the whole park!! sigh..

  • 4. Betty  |  May 30, 2008 at 7:15 pm

    What about Sundaes and Cones?! That was my favorite. We’re going to have to pioneer the gentrification of Wash Heights.


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