Balthazar, before the lunch rush hits

Manhattan, Day 5

Last night I lamented to a friend that so far the best food I’d tasted on my vacation was my friend Mandy’s homemade pot roast (which is, I grant you, hard to compete with). He suggested Balthazar. Why did I not just ask him to begin with? Balthazar was amazing – the latte, the food, and the service were all miles better than everything I’ve had so far.

I’m glad I made a reservation for noon, because by 1pm you couldn’t see from one side of the restaurant to the other.

Cou d’Agneau (lamb with farro, golden raisins, almonds, and watercress)

Then, having no great plan, I waddled north through Soho peeking into and fleeing from an assortment of shops selling ugly things for lots of money. Eventually, I realized I was pretty near Drew’s place of work (he my guide of Day 3), Fabulous Fanny’s in the East Village.

This place! Oh wow! So many vintage and vintage-style eyeglass frames…I needed new frames anyway, and had been stalling because no one in Seattle had what I liked. Problem solved!

The leopard print makes it

My other success of the day was stumbling across Cure Thrift Shop, which not only had non-ugly clothes made from real fabrics, at incredibly good prices, but they were¬†also having a sale. Clothes were 50% off the last marked price. Since I hadn’t really bought much in the way of souvenirs, getting a vintage Armani skirt for $29 was a pretty excellent way to end my vacation.

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