An appreciation of something that hasn’t vanished yet in NYC — the farmhouse at 121 Charles Street. Am hoping that this won’t be razed soon, or ever, to make way for another soulless glass condo.
from Maeve Brennan’s The Farmhouse That Moved Downtown:


"It was up in the air, a ghost shape, at the end of the block, on the northeast corner of Charles Street and Greenwich Street. The eastern wall of the farmhouse is painted a dark color, but the front wall of the farmhouse is painted a dark color, but the front wall, facing Charles Street is white, and as I approached it I got a sidewise glimmer of it that defined the whole tiny structure. It was a very tiny house — much smaller than I had expected. That must have been a very small farmer who built it. It was sitting up high on a sturdy cage, or raft, of heavy wooden beams, on a wedge-shaped, weedy lot, with the old brick warehouses towering over it like burly nurse-maids. It was a crooked little house — askew on its perch but crooked anyway — and it looked as plain and as insubstantial as a child’s chalk drawing, but it was a real house, with real windows and a real odor, and a flat roof with a chimney sticking out of it. … It is a very private place, with those big walls to the north and east, and with warehouses across both streets, Charles and Greenwich, but I saw domestic lights in the tall windows of the house diagonally across from the farmhouse, on Greenwich Street, and there are people living in the houses going back toward Hudson Street, so it is not deserted there at night or during the weekends. The house could hardly have found a better place to settle in.”


(photos via NYDP. more pics of the farmhouse here, not here, but also here)

An appreciation of something that hasn’t vanished yet in NYC — the farmhouse at 121 Charles Street. Am hoping that this won’t be razed soon, or ever, to make way for another soulless glass condo.

from Maeve Brennan’s The Farmhouse That Moved Downtown:

"It was up in the air, a ghost shape, at the end of the block, on the northeast corner of Charles Street and Greenwich Street. The eastern wall of the farmhouse is painted a dark color, but the front wall of the farmhouse is painted a dark color, but the front wall, facing Charles Street is white, and as I approached it I got a sidewise glimmer of it that defined the whole tiny structure. It was a very tiny house — much smaller than I had expected. That must have been a very small farmer who built it. It was sitting up high on a sturdy cage, or raft, of heavy wooden beams, on a wedge-shaped, weedy lot, with the old brick warehouses towering over it like burly nurse-maids. It was a crooked little house — askew on its perch but crooked anyway — and it looked as plain and as insubstantial as a child’s chalk drawing, but it was a real house, with real windows and a real odor, and a flat roof with a chimney sticking out of it. … It is a very private place, with those big walls to the north and east, and with warehouses across both streets, Charles and Greenwich, but I saw domestic lights in the tall windows of the house diagonally across from the farmhouse, on Greenwich Street, and there are people living in the houses going back toward Hudson Street, so it is not deserted there at night or during the weekends. The house could hardly have found a better place to settle in.”

(photos via NYDP. more pics of the farmhouse here, not here, but also here)

Lost Overtures

Early the other evening, I was sitting in a restaurant on lower Fifth Avenue that has peach-colored walls and a softly lighted mirror running the length of the bar, when a striking red-haired lady in a black dress with pearls who was sitting by herself at a table not far from mine stood up and walked to a corner table where a nice-looking man was sitting alone reading his evening paper while he waited for someone to come and take his order. He was a careful, orderly man — he had already folded his newspaper up small, so that he could read it and at the same time eat his dinner. The lady bent over this man and said something to him, and he glanced up and then got up immediately, looking very pleased and confused, and collected his briefcase and followed her back to the table. He was still clutching his newspaper. She sat down, but at the last moment, when he was almost in his chair, he hesitated and began looking around him and behind him. “Are you sure you’re alone?” he asked. “Of course I’m alone,” she replied. “Stop asking me if I’m alone.” He sat down, and she picked up her drink and started gazing at him possessively. She looked possessive but very good-humored. They were just beginning to talk when the headwaiter, a big, dignified man, appeared from a distant corner of the restaurant and saw the change that had been made in his seating arrangements.

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