Saturday, May 28, 2005

Crossed Signals, Missed Connections

What a day, but it didn’t turn out too badly. The wife and I were heading out to her sister’s house in New Jersey but were going to meet her mother first in Penn Station and then catch the train from there. The wife left about fifteen minutes before me so she could pick up the tickets. I headed to the subway and after waiting for the train for about ten minutes I noticed a small sign that said I would have to catch it on a different track because they were doing repairs. Well I am already running a bit late so I head over there and catch the train but it isn’t going to Penn Station, it is going up the East side of Manhattan. I end up going to Grand Central and catching a cab to Penn Station and get dropped off at the LIRR entrance and have to run all the way through the place to the New Jersey Transit trains. I get there just as they are announcing “All Aboard” and, not seeing my wife anywhere, figured she had already gotten on the train so I hoped on. Now, of course, I had left my cell phone at home so I couldn’t call her. Instead I walked the length of the train to see if I could see her, but she was nowhere to be found. So far so good.

Now we proceed to Newark and are then held up for about 15 minutes because some bridge is open and there are two other trains backed up. Anyway, I arrive in New Brunswick about 15 minutes late and no wife is getting off the train. No mother-in-law either. This cannot be good. And no sister-in-law waiting at the station. Luckily, however, there was a bar right across the street from the railroad station. And what is the Bar Man to do.

530) Marita’s Cantina

This is a fairly generic looking Mexican restaurant that pulls in a lively crowd from Rutgers when school is in session. Being the summer there weren’t too many people in the place today. There is a big light wood bar with a darker wood ledge for your foot. Light wood bar chairs with black seats. Above the bar are racks for hanging the glasses. There are mirrors and mirror backed shelves behind the bar. The Bar Specials and Happy Hour information is written in fluorescent colors on three of the mirrors. The floor has orangish tiles kind of like the kind you do see all over in Mexico. There are Mexican style designs on the walls above the large glass windows and a desert scene heavy on cacti fills up the rest of the wall. There were a couple of piñatas hanging from the ceiling.

I had a decently strong frozen margarita.

After letting the initial brain-freeze set in I got a bunch of quarters and went out to the pay phone. I got hold of my sister-in-law who said my wife had called her and had missed the train because her luck with the subway was even worse than mine. She told her sister to meet me at the station but, because the train was late, she didn’t see me and figured I missed the train too. Oh, the evil twists of fate I thought as I merrily returned to my margarita and waited for the next train, my wife, my mother-in-law, and my sister-in-law. Everything had a fairly happy ending except for the abuse that I took for not having my cell phone with me. And, of course, my wife made matters a bit worse by searching for me in the bars in Penn Station figuring that I too had missed the train. Bar Man gets in trouble for actually being on time and catching the right train. Go figure.


weeg said...

A day in Brunfuss! Now you're really hitting all my old haunts. A few good bars within walking distance of the train station if you make another trip to the area. Either head North on Easton or over to George Street.

Brian said...

are you trying to do them all in NY? I bet you could get some sponsors, e.g. Amstel Light is the official beer of Reykjavik, Is. (go figure). It's a short flight on Iceland Air, and they have a 3 day golf tournament that never stops for the night b/c it's midsommar and they've 24 light!

Devo said...

Hey Barman! Welcome to New Jersey! If you ever make it down to Hightstown (about a half hour south of New Brinswick) come check out our very own Theo's Lakeside Tavern! And let me know if you do plan to, for it would be an honor to sit down for a beer with the Bar Man.


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