I’ll take as many bro dates as I am offered. I went in for my drug test yesterday for my new job and as I was walking out I got a call from my brother asking me if I wanted to tag along on his trip into the BIG city. He lives about an hour north of the downtown of said BIG city and offered to take me to some coffee shops, eateries, and Ikea along the way to his work stuff. I live about an hour away from him but I was like “BET. I’ll be there.”
Somehow it took me only 45 minutes to arrive so apparently those 75mph speed zones helped a sista out, haha. I got to his house and he had me a bagel + schmear, some cheese, and a large glass of chilled apple cider waiting for me in his truck since I hadn’t gotten to eat lunch. Yusssss. I’ve mentioned said truck before but just in case you have forgotten just imagine the tallest, whitest truck you have ever seen. We learned that it is about an inch shy of 7 feet tall. More on that later though…
My brother is super chill. Pretty much he is the opposite of me in every way. We often joke that there is no way that we were both raised in the same household because we are just THAT different. He’s fun though. Nothing really get’s him rattled. He’s big and silly and comfortable anywhere. He just goes with the flow. So when we were in his giant truck in crazy BIG city traffic destined to die in a firey car crash he was like… nbd.
We first did all his work stuff and then stopped at Ikea for some meatballs, apple cider, and shopping for my household items since I sold and gave away almost everything to move down here. I didn’t buy anything though. I won’t see a paycheck for two more weeks so now is not the time to be making lots of purchases.
After that we mosied to the heart of the city to visit a coffee shop dedicated to the night owls of the world. It’s only open from 4pm-4am. My brother got coffee but since I’m one of those anxious people who can’t hold their caffeine I opted for one their charcoal citrus kombuchas on tap. Looooove kombucha on tap. We had plans to meet up later with a couple of my brother’s friends at one of his favorite joints downtown so we just chitchatted and sipped while we killed some time.
Downtown wasn’t exactly what I was hoping for. The city is nice don’t get me wrong, but the place is COVERED with homeless people. And homeless people so strung out on drugs that I feared they could harm a person if you looked at them wrong. At some places you had to serpentine on the sidewalk to keep from stepping on someone sprawled out naked on the sidewalk. Definitely glad that I nixed the college in this city. It’s just not my vibe. Not my comfort level.
We met up with a friend at this really neat place just a short walk from a park. You entered on the ground floor. If you walk up the stairs you’ll find a swanky upscale place where they charge $50+ for a pat of butter. If you walk down the stairs you’ll find a place that reminds me of a bar crossed with a cafe crossed with a greenhouse crossed with a food market. The floors were all concrete. On on end there we hightops with barstools with endless taps along the wall serving up every kind of drink imaginable. On the other end were lower wooden tables with regular chairs surrounded by a delicate wine bar and a wall that was covered with…live plants. I kid you not, dozens (if not hundreds) of plants were planted right into the wall and they all had grow lights hanging above them which gave the place kinda a cool, greenhouse kinda ambiance. In the middle there were tables and booths with arcade games to the side. Every other bit of wall space was crammed with various little food stations. Like… Vietnamese pho at one, BBQ at another, steaks at another, artesian pizzas at another.
It’s extremely hard to describe and for some reason I took no photos (I feel awkward taking photos lest I be accused of being an “Instagrammer”), but essentially it was like an underground mall foodcourt with lots of alcohol and LOTS of plants…stuck to the walls.
We ate and chatted and then wandered around downtown to see what we could see. Being easily entertained is a good quality to have when going on a life journey like this. That way even when you have little money or few friends you still have a blast, haha.
By the way, just because your VERY tall truck fits under the measure bar for a 7ft parking garage DOES NOT mean that it is safe for you to park there. When we pulled up to the parking garage all seemed kosher. We fit under the measuring bar so we figured there would be no problem. We forgot one tiny thing… If you have little clearance it just might be difficult for you to make the turn AND go up an incline… I kid you not, we had an inch worth of clearance and had to go all the way UP the parking garage in order to get out the exit. We just went really slow and held our breath that we didn’t scrape!!!
At one point, though, after we had already said goodbye to my brother’s friend, my brother pulled over into a mostly empty parking lot to do some work on his headlight. There was a short or something and his left headlight wouldn’t light. He hopped out leaving the door open with me inside and started working on his car. About 10 seconds after he started working some dude came out of no where and was like “Everything ok, my brotha”.
I leaned over the console and dead eyed the guy and I watched Noah jump when the man spoke to him. When you are in a city with a particular reputation after 9pm the last thing you want is for someone to come out of the darkness unannounced. Especially when your car is running, the door is open, and there is a passenger inside. ME. I was silently hoping that my brother would close the gap between the dude and the open door. “Not today, Satan!” He must have been thinking the same thing because the moment he shooed the guy off he locked the door, closed it, and told me not to open it until he asked me to. I did have several weapons at my disposal. There was a 6 inch knife near my left thigh and a loaded handgun in the glove compartment, but considering that I’m not very skilled I would most likely end up arming my attacker instead of scaring him off. I had weird visions of the stranger jumping in the car and me attacking him like a rabid animal. *shudders* My brain has a weird way of getting carried away…