Have you ever read a book and wondered what the places look like in real life?
I experienced the opposite phenomenon in the middle of Breakfast at Tiffany’s. I’ve been lucky enough to spend a weekend in New York recently, the sights still excitingly fresh in my mind. So when our narrator recalls his precious time with Holly Golightly, my inner cinema clicks into action.
“Once, we walked all the way to Chinatown, ate a chow-mein supper, bought some paper lanterns, and stole a box of joss sticks, then moseyed across the Brooklyn Bridge” – Truman Capote, Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
My visit, over sixty years since the story was set, wasn’t too dissimilar. We walked to Chinatown, ate dumplings and noodles, bought a fridge magnet featuring the New York Skyline and moseyed over to the Brooklyn Bridge. I stole no joss sticks. Hope that’s not too disappointing for you.
In the book, they ride horses through Central Park, but we settled for going by (human) foot, partly because I have no idea where you can pick up a horse in central New York, and partly because I can’t ride a horse. Even so, my day and a half in New York was enough to furnish my imagination with some real memories to call on, which I think is surely all the more reason to travel… right?