The next day I had an early appointment in the city and, as is my custom, I ate breakfast in Penn Station. Central Market makes a nice omelette, the coffee is good and there is such quick in and out activity at the tables that I don’t feel guilty about lingering and sketching. After all, everyone else is hustling to get to work on time, and, ha ha, I’m not. I chose a table that gave me a view of the people waiting while the eggs, six pans at once, were being prepared. It is fun to watch.

My appointment was for 10:15 and I had plenty of time to take the E train to Fifth Avenue and 53 Street which afforded me a longer walk but still allowed me to arrive early. While I was sketching the lady in blue, my name was called but I held up one finger, indicating I would like a moment more. Yikes. What a surprised, funny look I got from the technician – everybody is always in a rush she later told me – but then we looked at the sketch and discussed her little lamp that she has snazzed up. While I was waiting for the eyeballs to dilate I sketched the man in green and the same thing happened. I held up my finger. But now I was in different territory. This technician stood calmly because he knew exactly what I was doing.

I had planned on walking downtown to one of the parks I like so I could sketch some more but my eye was über uncomfortable (unusual) and, even though it was a cloudy day, it was so bright to my sun-glassed, dilated eyes, that I had trouble keeping them open while walking. Plus there was a bit of a misty rain that was either doing something or not, couldn’t tell, so I walked in the direction of the E train where I paused. I decided to walk down Fifth since I could always get on a bus if it really rained. I couldn’t look at anything so I just followed the crowd and stopped at every corner, made sure the light was green, and crossed. No eyes closed jay walking for me that day.

At 42nd Street I entered Bryant Park and discovered it was Fleet Week. Soldiers, Sailors, Marines everywhere. All sorts of macho demonstrations and music. For some strange reason I decided to sketch – I couldn’t see but this seemed like such a good idea. There were empty chairs by the carousel, I turned one around, sat, took out my book and, all of a sudden I realized the eye no longer hurt and a horse was waiting for me and a band was playing.

I left the park and headed to Times Square and found a pile of metal crowd control barriers conveniently located so I could rest my book while I sketched the tourists milling about enthralled and excited.

I dragged my weary feet back down to Penn Station and was glad the train was waiting for me.

(Sketched on site, painted later at home)

Repurposed folder, gesso, Pitt Brush pens (black and colored), Molotow White acrylic markers, Signo Uni-ball 153 pen.