The Strand & Cafe Khufu

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Alright! Well, on a first and unrelated note, I got my ears pierced! I got little steel hoops and am hoping that there are no complications this time (as there have been when I tried to pierce them in the past); we went to New York Adorned, which I find a really comfortable and interesting piercing and tattoo shop downtown. I had to hold on to Nina's hand during the piercing, but it went quick and I realized that it's the same with all needles for me - my anticipation of the pain is worse than the pain itself!

Bonus this week! We got to go to two different places and I had the chance to write in both of them - this time, since I had finished writing my fiction class story, I started in on something pertaining to our surroundings. I started writing about The Strand when I was in it, from the perspective of two different people. Maybe that will pan out, who knows?
Anyway, here are my reviews:
The Strand -
Always a great place to buy books and spend hours in just looking at the stacks and stacks available for purchase. As I walked around with pen in hand, furiously scribbling on every flat surface I could see, I realized that, although it was the perfect place for books, it was not the perfect place for writing.
There were people everywhere, which was to be imagined. They would jostle you, move around you, hit you with their bags, and when you finally got to the lower or upper floors to get some air away from them all, you got lost in the darkest little corridors of the shop. The books were interesting and inspiring nearly every way you turned, but it made me feel self-conscious to be stopping and writing in the middle of what could potentially be a thoroughfare for hungry bibliophiles waiting to get at their blessed pages. I was careful to listen for the creak of shoes on the wooden floors.
My verdict: a place of great inspiration, but not one of great writing.

Cafe Khufu -
Though this is a hookah bar, no one requires you to smoke. And so that's just what I did, sat around with a big group of friends and enjoyed casual banter in the low-lit, loud music corner where the soft couches and warm air preserve you from the winter cold outside. It's an interesting escape downtown and I thought it wouldn't be the best place to write (since it does have such low lights and such loud music), but when I finally sat down and pulled out my pen, I found the words were coming much easier and that I could see by the bare light of the chandelier above us. Plus, the chai is excellent.
Perhaps from the inspiration of the day walking around The Strand and parts of downtown, perhaps from the thrill of the great conversation going on around me, and perhaps because I was feeling relaxed after an adventure-filled day, writing in Cafe Khufu became a luxury. Though it may not be the typical place to sit and write for hours on end, I definitely will return there from time to time.

The pictures this week are 3 from The Strand (yes, there's a skeleton in the medicine section, if you've never seen it) and one from Cafe Khufu (the flash makes everyone's hands look like ghosts...) Enjoy!

Read more of my writing in strange places reviews.
And check out some more posts featuring my photography.