My mother’s first breath after crossing the Williamsburg Bridge into Brooklyn today was a sigh. She wishes I lived in Manhattan, I know. She tells me every chance she gets.
As Mom drove north on Havemeyer toward my apartment, I saw Williamsburg through her eyes: graffiti, old unpretty buildings, men with weird facial hair weaving in and out of traffic on bikes, more graffiti. I get it. She doesn’t see what I see and I have stopped trying to persuade her of my neighborhood’s charms.
More often than not, my parents ask me to meet them in Manhattan at their favorite restaurant–and then complain about the availability of parking, the cost of parking, the crowds and/or my hair/outfit/weight/lack of boyfriend or husband (that last bit is all Mom).
At Pellegrino’s in Little Italy, our small family’s every idiosyncrasy is known, accepted, embraced and even fawned over because, you see, we started going there in 1995 or 1996.
Even though I went through times where I didn’t want to go there, preferring new! and! exciting! sceney! places! and bitchfaced through meals, I still have my own antipasto that isn’t on the menu. They make it for me without me asking.