Today, we ventured out of Manhattan for the first time since quarantine began in early March. We took the train to Jackson Heights, Queens, and loaded up on delicious, cheap groceries and produce from a couple of Indian/Pakistani markets, picked up a box of Indian sweets, stopped by a Colombian bakery and bought some pan de bono (cheese bread), and attempted (but failed) to eat at one of the outside dining tables of our favorite dosa place. They had only two tables available, and they had a steady stream of people trying to eat there. Plus, the service looked quite slow. All of the outdoor tables and chairs that are normally outside the train station were gone, likely because of COVID-19, and so we ended up having to go back to Manhattan to find a spot for outdoor dining. It was still good to leave the borough and see life elsewhere, though. I miss the hustle and bustle of wandering around neighborhoods in Queens. I also miss the variety of produce and spices, the diversity of the clientele, plus the cheap prices.
I perked up for a bit, especially when I saw a sign for Pakistani mangoes at one of the markets. Unfortunately, a worker said that they wouldn’t be getting their delivery from Pakistan until next week, so we came just a week too early. I purchased some Haitian mangoes from a street vendor here on the Upper West Side this past week, and unfortunately, they just weren’t as sweet or delicious as the Ataulfo mangoes we normally get. Plus, they were quite stringy, which I strongly dislike.