It wasn’t Australia, but we were in the Bush(wick). I can see why Dave and Victoria conceived their first-born in Brooklyn – New York is the city that never sleeps, after all.
Kevin and I arrived at our Airbnb, hoping for any improvement on Boston’s rodent experience. Thankfully, we had a stunning, airy apartment to ourselves for three days. We felt right at home – a model owned the place. She also had two extremely needy cats, Zeba (Xeba?) and Stella.
On our first evening, we ventured to a bar in a warehouse – they’re all in warehouses – for a New York cocktail. Six dollar frozen margaritas were on offer, or rather, tequila on ice. It remains the only time in our friendship that we’ve left a drink unfinished.
Thankfully, we found another bar not too far away that served beers we could both drink. We played pool with an array of locals who looked like a gang in their uniform of tattoos and hairiness, but they were all solo drinkers who had simply – unsurprisingly – gravitated towards us.
The men sat with us for a few hours. Both artists, they told us their respective life stories while smoking so thickly and quickly that it was a wonder it wasn’t coming out of their ears. Their creative struggles included taking John Mayer to a secret location for a photo shoot, only for him to call the paps out to find him.
The next day, we headed to Williamsburg. After a year in Melbourne, I didn’t realise anywhere could top the edgy scale, but this corner of Brooklyn managed it. Without being ‘authentic’ necessarily, its cafés, bars, and inhabitants are infinitely less pretentious than its Australian counterpart. We stopped at Joe’s Pizza, where Kev demolished a particularly crispy spinach and ricotta slice. Every pizza place in America has chilli, parmesan and basil available on the side, as well as hot sauce; I think every pizza joint should have condiments for sprinkling.
On our rooftop that evening, Kev and I watched the sun set over the Manhattan skyline and had an impressively soppy moment where we realised how good life is.
It only got better the following day, as we ventured over the bridge. Champion’s Pizza topped Joe’s, a fish taco on the Lower West Side saved a moment of hanger, and a deep-fried mac and cheese empanada on the High Line in Chelsea rendered any ideas of health on this trip utterly meaningless.
Sex and the City? I just wanted you to read until the end!