Easter Art Hunt

I wanted to leave around 10am, but nothing on my itinerary was open until about 12pm so I left then.

I arrived at Hampden at exactly 12:31pm, and made my way over to the “new” Café Hon. The hostess shows me to a small table shoved between two occupied tables. I take one look at the “improved” menu, gave it back to the waitress and left the restaurant.

I walked a block east on 36th Street to Holy Frijotos, and the one server gave me a menu and took me to a table in the “carry-out” section. Ten minutes a second server appeared and asked if I wanted something to drink. Despite hearing them repeat the phrase “no more then 15 minutes” to their phone customers, it took them over 45 minutes to bring me my grilled chicken sandwich. It took another ten minutes for the original server to toss the check at my table.

Fed up with waiting, I took my check to the bar. The bartender glared at me. “You pay your server,” he said curtly.

“That could take another hour, and I’m kinda on a schedule here.”

“Hey, Mikey, come over here and take this dumbass’ check, so he’ll leave me the fuck alone.”

Server 2 reluctantly stops fucking around with server 1 at the other end of the bar to take my money, and comes back several agonizingly long minutes later with my change (all in $1s, as if I was going to a strip club afterwards). I didn’t bother counting out a tip for nonexistent service.

I left the restaurant, made my way east one block, crossed the street and found at the entrance to Minas Gallery…I found it to be closed. I turned around, and headed back to the light rail station.

I disembarked at Lexington Market at 2:20pm after realizing I had missed my stop. I was heading over to E.M.P Collective to see “Lifetime Subscription” before Friday’s closing. I walked up Howard Street and turned left onto Franklin Street, but couldn’t find the exact storefront. I walked around for several minutes trying to find it before giving up, and heading back to the light rail.

(For the record: E.M.P is located at the Baltimore Street Station, which was just as well since it wasn’t open on Tuesdays anyway.)

I was sitting in the Barnes & Noble café when I remembered that “Art at Top” show in the World Trade Center building less than 200 yards away from my balcony seat. If you’ve read this blog, you know I’m an advocate of “backyard tourism.” The problem is: a show like that, while nice on paper, would detract from the supposed main attraction of the site – the view. Even if it was cloudy, who would pay attention to the paintings anyway?

Cool, I just saved enough to pay for this coffee. 🙂

UPDATE: I was able to get back to Minas Gallery earlier this week. The review of “Time\Space\Manner” is now posted on my other blog. (4/11/12)

Categories: art, Baltimore, Hampden, light rail | 2 Comments

Hampden happenigs

10:38am – Trying to decide where I want to spend my Saturday: Canton or Hampden. I check the CCC’s website and see that the Harbor Connector doesn’t run on Weekends (technically, it does but as a regular – non-free – Water Taxi) so Hampden it is.


11:28am – Leave apt on way to Mt. Royal light rail station en route to Woodberry (2 stops). I use two dollar coins to purchase a one-way pass and pocket the change for the ride back (yes, this will be semi-important later).


Noon – Arrive on “The Avenue” in Hampden (West 36th Street) after a 10 minute walk from the light rail station. I make my way to Café Hon, the neighborhood’s signature restaurant, where I managed to have a slow and utterly forgettable meal.


1:18pm – Reach the park at end of “The Avenue,” and begin making my way back up the hill determined to stop into every shop along the way. Sadly, I seemed to get at best luke-warm reception at many of these stores (with a few indifferent and one downright hostile).


2:38pm – Found myself standing back where I started from at the corner of 36th and Falls Road. I could walk around to the Rotunda Mall on 40th Street or I could return to my apartment. I went inside the 7-11 on the corner and upon coming out decided it was probably best to call it a day.


3:00pm – After fighting the ticket machine at the light rail for several minutes, I decided to switch machines and put all change rejected from the first into the second and it worked out perfectly: 6 quarters and one dime over a 2 ½ hour period. I got off the train at Mt. Royal station exactly as the canned Westminster Chimes went off – all 19 of them.

Categories: adventures, Baltimore, Hampden | 2 Comments

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