In our Staten Island Adventure, Rooster and I take the ferry to an Indian Dealership, with the help of Chris and Richard. #Staten Island #Staten Island Ferry #Gotham Motorcycles #Paulie’s Pizzeria
Staten Island Adventure
Rooster had one request regarding places he’d like to visit when we got to New York. He’s always wanted to visit Gotham Indian Motorcycles of Staten Island. I’ve already mentioned in previous blogs how bikers like to go to motorcycle shops that carry their brand of bike any place they visit. He has a dream of winning the lottery, going to the Gotham shop, laying down a bundle of cash for a new Indian, and riding it home to Indiana. Therefore, our Staten Island adventure started with a quest to find a dealership that sold Indian Motorcycles.
How we go to Staten Island
After riding a couple of miles on the FDR, I’m thinking he’d never make it out of the state of New York without suffering bodily injury or death. To get to Staten Island, you need to take the subway to the ferry. The staging area for the ferry ride across the river is housed in a large glass building with security as intense as you would find at an international airport. They don’t require you to remove your coat, take off your shoes, or remove all metal items from your person, but NYPD and DOT officers lurk around to let you know you’re being watched.
What is it like to ride the Staten Island Ferry
The ferry is a free ride across New York Harbor took us to the first stage on our Staten Island adventure. The passengers waiting to board were a multi-national collection of people speaking the languages of the world. Children played like well-behaved puppies. Adults yawned and tried not to make eye contact. One thing I learned about New Yorkers is they don’t want to engage the strangers they are mingling with on mass transportation or as they stroll down the street.
There was no pushing or shoving as we stood together biding our time before we climbed aboard the large orange ship. The Whitehall Terminal on the Manhattan side was so crowded I wondered if we were going to find a seat on the boat. Once we climbed on board, finding a place to enjoy the thirty-minute ride wasn’t a problem. We sat on the side of the boat away from the view of the Statue of Liberty. The ship was too crowded with commuters for us to be fortunate enough to get a seat with a view.
Chris called for an Uber driver when we arrived at St. George Terminal on the Staten Island side of the river. I don’t know how New Yorkers lived before the invention of Uber. Those drivers made it a breeze to navigate our way around the five boroughs. All we had to do is make a call. A Uber would show up like a rabbit pulled out of a magician’s hat. (Everyone got where they needed to go unless their name was Cory. He deserved to get left behind. Didn’t he, Chris?)
Hence, the Uber driver dropped us off at Gotham. It was a very charming motorcycle shop that lived up to Indian’s high standards. Richard is not a motorcycle enthusiast, but he thought the Slingshot was snazzy and sleek. I could see visions in their heads about how cool they would look driving the Slingshot down the streets of New York City. They didn’t have a store patch, but Rooster and I did manage to snag a cool T-shirt. Still, I wanted a patch to sew into a quilt to commemorate our Staten Island adventure.
New York City vs, Chicago deep-dish Pizza
We asked the people in the shop where there was an excellent place to eat. They directed us to Paulie’s Pizzeria which was a little walk down Bay Street. The suggestion excited me because I wanted to get a slice of genuine New York. We sampled the Chicago deep-dish pizza during a New Years Day visit to the Windy City in 2017. The question lurked in the back of my mind if New York pizza could put what we had in Chicago to shame. We craved a New York City-style pizza to round out our Statten Island adventure.
Paulie’s had the feel of a friendly neighborhood bar where the locals come to unwind after a hard day. The girl who waited on us gave us good service, and the supreme pizza was excellent. My conclusion was sorry New York. Your pizza was good, but Chicago beats you with their deep dish. If you happen to visit Paulie’s on a visit to New York, be sure and tell them The Henhouse lady sent you.
Then Chris called for a second Uber driver to deliver us to the ferry while we finished eating. We had a short wait at the terminal for the ferry that would carry us back across the cold waters of the New York harbor. A bag on the seat beside where Rooster decided to sit attracted thew attention of a DOT officer and her dog.
A DOT officer was right on top of the discarded sack. Immediately, the police dog’s nose sniffed for a bomb on the seat when Rooster asked the officer how the dog would tell her if there were explosives in the bag. She said, “Well if the dog runs, I wouldn’t hang around if I were you.” Rooster gave her a funny look and laughed. I thought the officer was damn serious.
OUR EXPERIENCE ON THE TRIP BACK TO QUEEN
During the ride back to ManShattan, the ferry was less crowded. We were able to sit on the Statue of Liberty side of the ship. It was dark now. Lady Liberty lit up the harbor, holding her torch to the sky with pride. It occurred to me she was the focal point from every angle of America’s largest city.
The impression left by the Statue of Liberty in the dark
There is such an optimistic promise in what she represents to the people of the world. I hope we live up to the dream of acceptance and freedom. However, in our countries current politically hostile climate we have become cruel to one another. What Lady Liberty represents sometimes seems to me is more a dream than a reality. With this in mind, freedom and equality for all is an excellent aspiration to reach for. Thus our Staten Island adventure came to an end.
Molly Shea is an accomplished fictional short story writer from Indiana, who writes short stories and novels about a fictional town called Tecumseh. To read more of her short stories and adventures click here.
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