Strolling uptown on St. Nicholas toward 125th Street — down-coated, warm despite the cool, breezy April night air, unstuffing my belly — I’m wondering what I will find.
There. A tiny bar with big plate-glass windows, bright, full. Turns out to be a ‘juice bar and lounge’ named New Life. While reading the window menu, I’m beckoned inside by two patrons. We engage in conversation. Someone mentions drinks for sexual rejuvenation.
It turns out that this is a ‘new’ bar, for those who don’t want alcohol, but want to hang out, to socialize. Not sure yet about the rejuvenation.
My next conversation is with one of the owners, who tells me that they have just opened up a couple of months back, and intend to modify their offerings to suit their clientele if only they can determine who their clientele is, or might become.
All very interesting — especially the sexual rejuvenation part — and, I think, a place to go to meet local residents, to find out what’s up, up there, to get high on love potions and exotic additives like aloe, cayenne, chia seeds, acai, seaweeds and mosses.
Finally I reach 125th, check out The Apollo, chat with a ticket taker, ask ‘what’s up tonight?’—she gives me an unclaimed ticket, free, to the upper balcony and I catch the last number of Ledisi’s tribute to Nina Simone. Three great backup singers, a pumped five-piece band and an enthusiastic full house.
My return trip led to further long, interesting conversations.