Hermès is a high-end fashion accessory store that originally comes from Paris, but these windows were photographed in midtown Manhattan. Both windows show playful scenes of cute furry animals playing the rather human games of ping-pong and cards. Like Macy’s, Hermès is know for its decorative window displays. These pictures were taken in the fall of 2018, on the cusp of the Christmas shopping season. Anne and I had spent all day marching up and down the island of Manhattan, trying to stay outside, because the forecast for the coming days held lots of rain. Previously, we had swung by Macy’s, where Dan had been working on his own Christmas window displays. After his shift was over, he introduced us to Britt and then we all went out to dinner.
Those were happier times in New York than these days are. Still, some joy can still be found. Yesterday, a belated birthday present arrived for Dan. Anne, with the help of Jane had sent a Zingerman’s care package full of goodies. Dan and Britt had been sheltering in place and were both giddy with its receipt. They are at Dan’s apartment, which is in a converted three unit Brooklyn brownstone. At the outbreak of the epidemic, one of his two neighbors quickly moved out and has not been seen since. Over last weekend, the other unit’s neighbors also disappeared. Now, Dan and Britt are home alone in NYC. All they need now is a cameo from Donald Trump, for their own remake of Home Alone 2: Lost in New York or they could do the Canadian version of the film and edit him out of it.
I had just read an article in The City that tells the tale of two cities and which includes a New York City map that showed the changes in the amount of household garbage collected this last March, compared to a year ago. According to the article, you can think of garbage as the canary in the coal mine, when it comes to social trends. As people shelter in place, in less affluent neighborhoods the amount of garbage is up, but in the richer neighborhoods garbage collection is down. This map showed that while the amount of garbage collected was up for most of New York, it was down significantly in high rent Manhattan. The gist of this article was that this decline is attributable to wealthier Manhattanites fleeing to their summer homes in the Hamptons and the like. This article goes on to note other buildings like Dan’s, where most of the tenants have fled town.