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In the neighborhood

On Allen Street near Delancey.

I've been taking walks very early in the morning, usually out the door around 6:30, no later than 7. My favorite direction is south & east, where the Lower East Side still has a bit of grit. Very few people & we look at each other in wonder. The last survivors. Yesterday (in SoHo) a well-dressed & non-masked older woman veered towards me, but usually the women notice their surroundings, while the men—like always—expect everyone else to get out of their way. I may be restricted, you can sense them feeling, but I still deserve more room than YOU. One NYC pleasure is meeting one's neighbors when there's a crisis—a blackout, a blizzard. This time around we are largely deprived of that, though I did have a brief conversation just now with a young woman with a laundry cart about open laundromats. Someone else from the neighborhood that I've known by sight for ages jumped in, & for a minute it was my New York—friendly, funny, helpful, with all the time in the world to chat.

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