I grew up not at all far from NYC. We thought nothing of hopping on the train to run dun for an afternoon or evening. It just seemed like a normal thing to do and as much as I think it’s a wonderful place, it’s never held the fascination that it does for those who didn’t spend their youth roaming its streets, museums and later on-bars!
Now the Bronx, that’s another story. You pass it on the train or in the car on the way to the city, but I can honestly say there is only one time I can remember going to the Bronx-on a school trip to the Bronx Zoo. No, I’ve never been to a Yankee game and that’s not been an issue for me, but what I have been longing to do in the Bronx was to visit the famous Arthur Avenue-the “real” Little Italy of New York.
Arthur Avenue is my dream kind of street. It’s a collection of butchers, bakers, pasta and pastry makers, cheese mongers, restaurants, produce vendors, anything and everything having to do with Italian cooking and eating. I’ve known about it forever, but just never seem to have the time to go and visit. When my cousin C. offered to take my sister and I and give us the guided tour of her favorite shops, I didn’t hesitate to say “let’s go”.
Seeing that I’m always homesick for Italy, this was the perfect antidote for what ails me. The area just exuded Italianness- from the people working in the stores, to the people on the street and in the restaurants. The men at the table next to us at lunch could have just walked off the set of the Sopranos!
My cousin was the perfect guide and I had to stop myself from buying too much food. I did leave with a variety of goodies and only wish this is a place I could shop on a regular basis. I’ll leave you with a few photos and I’m off to eat some pistachio biscotti. Ciao!