Lyons in the Concrete Jungle: Brooklyn

So we packed everything and headed to Brooklyn. New York is one of my favorite cities and it has been more than four years since I've been for a visit. Eating is synonymous with New York City, and besides seeing Sara and Kevin the only other things on my list of things I wanted was to drink a delicious Bee's Knee latte (almond latte with a giant plop of honey) and eat this mondo breakfast sandwich. Unfortunately, that place had closed since the last time I was there, but there was no shortage of delicious food or drink.

Verrazano-Narrows Bridge

Sara and I have been friends since middle school, nearly 20 years (yikes!) through those very awkward years. As we were packing up our things for this trip I came across a huge box of hand written notes folded into tiny little squares which pre-teen girls in 1996 used to pass between classes. I had to smile because I have such fond memories of all of those girls from middle school. It's kinda sad that the girls today won't be able to have a box full of tweets to remind them of their youth. It's always great going to visit your girlfriends - you can wear their clothes, try new products, and if you forgot anything you know they have what you need. So of course, while I was there I had to try out her tooth powder (which I think we will get when we need a toothpaste reload – the bottle is tiny and it works great!) and her shampoo.

Sara and I on our last morning

After we got settled we chatted for a while about a trip that Sara and Kevin had recently gone on to Vietnam, and remarked on how a culture whom has so little can be so happy. Our friends Scotty and Jess said the very same thing upon returning from Bali. With that said, will our generation become the one that breaks the cycle of consumerism and the notion that more is better? Will we, the children of baby boomers, be the generation who revolts against corporations and their 50+ hour work week? As we've met with friends across the country we've noticed a common thread, there are very few who LOVE their job, and even fewer who think that their employer truly cares about their well-being or that there are any long-term benefits for staying at a job for 30 years (ie. a pension). As I write this from New Hampshire, regional grocery store employees are on strike to bring back a CEO who treats them like people, not a union mind you, just regular employees who said enough is enough.

Spuyten Duyvil's Garden

We then decided that we should go grab some beers and wander the city. We first went to Spuyten Duyvil, a delightful little beer bar / meat shop with a garden out back where someone was having the most Pinterest perfect bridal shower. After that we were on our way to our next stop, but got side tracked at The Gibson where we saw their friends, Ashley and Dan, sitting in the corner window enjoying the day. So, we took a pit stop and had a drink. Sara and I had a Boulder Kinda Blue and the guys had a half pint of the Dark Horse Reserve Special Black Bier. The Beer Advocate reviews on our respective beers makes me giggle, eh - oh well. We sat down and Ashley and Dan started to tell us their own road trip adventure involving the purchase of a 1969 Shasta Land Yacht from a guy in Indiana and its long, rather unsuccessful, trip back East, and by "back east" it got as far as Nashville. I'm 99% sure that is that same RV and I suppose the lesson from their story is if the owner tells you to ship it, that means definitely don't try to drive it back across the country. 

After The Gibson it was time for some food, and since pizza, tacos and burgers rank as our favorite foods to eat Kevin suggested going to Paulie Gee's - down by the water in an old warehouse building. They have fantastic vegan and carnivorous pies, but for me the star of the show was the hot honey. Once I get a kitchen I can call my own (or my brother's) I might try to make some. The pizzas were wood fired and the flavors were sooo complex and delicious I can't even begin to describe it; sweet, salty, crunchy, chewy, savory - yum! We were tempted to get the ice cream sundae with candied pecans and hot honey for dessert but we were a little too full when we were done with dinner. On the walk back we did decide to give a local creamery a shot but they didn't stock the flavor we were looking for, so we stopped at a market on the way home and found the coveted Van Leeuwen Artisan Dairy Free Ice Cream in Salted Caramel. Friends, that is delicious.
Our humorous check at Paulie Gee's (they had some trouble with the credit card machine that night)
The pizza box sans pizza

The Boat House at Prospect Park
The next morning we had breakfast at The West Brooklyn which had cold brew coffee and kombucha (on draft!). I like to do new things each time I visit somewhere, and since I've done a lot of the things I wanted to do we decided to take a trip to Prospect Park to enjoy some urban wilderness. 

Prospect Park was pretty impressive - 585 acres of park in the middle of Brooklyn created in 1858 by the same folks who created Central Park. Mirabelle joined us on our adventure in the park and you could have seen the path we took but we forgot all about running our AllTrails app until we were about three-quarters of the way through our walk. Whoops! We'll get better at remembering, I'm sure. In the middle of the park is a Quaker cemetery; my family has some close ties to the Quaker religion. On a side note if you have never been to a Quaker funeral, then you are missing out. It sounds a little odd to put it that way, but the Quakers have funerals down. They have the usual eulogy for the deceased but after that they open up the floor to anyone who would like to share a story or anecdote about the deceased. It ends up being the most wonderful celebration of the person and leaves you feeling truly joyful at the end – the way funerals should be in my opinion. 

We had our leftover pizza for a picnic lunch and headed north to the Lyons Family Farm.


  1. Katie and Ben!!! It was so great to see you guys. Thank you for stopping off in Brooklyn, we had a great time and really enjoyed having you here. I'm so glad you made it to Prospect Park and that you enjoyed it. I look forward to reading about your adventures. Happy road tripping!!
    Love you!

    Sara and Kevin and Phoebe (the dog)


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