Here In Brooklyn

My dad grew up in Brooklyn and spent his life, one might say, getting out. And now his oldest son (that’s me) has taken the narrative full circle, bringing our gene pool back to where my dad started, where his parents and their parents settled and started life in America (most of them came from Russia.) I came from Chelsea, on Saturday, with 30 giant boxes, three (appropriately) Russian movers and one unhappy cat. Here’s the apartment after unpacking the kitchen:

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So our work was cut out. The movers–Active Movers, I found them on City Search–were helpful and good but incredibly corrupt in terms of taking advantage of the situation: charging $25 for each additional box and then insisting that various items HAD to be boxed or they couldn’t move them for insurance purposes. (The TV and the glass desk made sense, I suppose, in that regard; the vacuum cleaner didn’t.) They charged by the hour and I was frantically hurrying them along as the dollar signs kept growing and growing.

Diana, on the other hand, took the advise of site reader Rebecca and used Mary’s Movers. Diana doesn’t have much stuff (a bed, a desk, a bookshelf and a few boxes) so for her Mary’s made sense (they have a small van.) She was moved in within two hours and spent $130. She was very happy.

Once most of our boxes were unpacked, we made a discovery: our apartment was filled with empty broken down boxes. We could barely get around. But recycling day isn’t until THURSDAY. It was an impossible situation. So, without divulging too much detail, we found a daring solution. It involved a secret alcove on the side of a laundry mat that was marked “recycling” and a woman who worked at the laundry mat giving a tentative “Ok”–not because she really approved, maybe, but because she didn’t speak English. Our apartment was finally free of boxes.

Yesterday the gas man came and set up our burners. He was a very strange man. He said there was paint on top of the stove and he needed to let the burners burn to get rid of the paint smell. So I stood there with him as all four burners were running and waited patiently until he felt the paint smell was gone. I didn’t smell any paint.

But aside from the practical concerns of moving into a new apartment, Diana and I are LOVING Park Slope. Our first night here we had margaritas and Mexican food at Los Pollitos II. Here’s Diana toasting to our new lives here in Brooklyn:

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Cheers!

On Sunday, once we were 90% unpacked and set up and feeling good about our living space we decided to celebrate with dinner at our street’s most famed restaurant: Al Di La. And so we went and had a wonderful meal. I took pictures. Where are they? Those you will see in my next post, my second official post as a Brooklyn resident.

[Note: I am writing this at a coffee shop because we don’t have internet yet.]

[Note 2: The coffee shop, thank God, isn’t Starbucks. My last apartment had two Starbuckses within walking distance. This new apartment is on the same street as one of Brooklyn’s best independently owned coffee shops. Score!]

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