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If you want to eat well in a strange city, the street to avoid is the one with all the restaurants.  I don’t travel in cities that often. All cities are strange to me. That confessed, I’m an experienced enough traveler to know that if you dine at most restaurants on the restaurant street, you’ll get what you expect. Pizza, chicken cooked eight ways, hamburgers, chips & salsa, salad, and mediocre renditions of whatever food a restaurant claims to specialize in—Mexican, Thai, Italian, write your own list.

Editor’s note: this piece is a continuation of Damon’s Books and Coffee piece, published in August.

That same day, Dad and I did go to the coffee shop and bookstore. The coffee shop, or what my father calls the coffee shop, is a bakery that specializes in bagels. The place was busy when we arrived. Dad asked me what I wanted before we reached the counter. I didn’t want anything, but I ordered a small coffee, lots of cream, no sugar. Dad ordered a large latte. The waitress brought him a small latte by mistake.

I am writing this on a Monday morning, having come to my office at the university. I am not a professor, but a semester-by-semester hired hand. This is the first week of school, and in another hour, I will be going to a doctor’s appointment. Every three or four months I have a blood test and a follow-up appointment with a nephrologist. At the appointment, I am informed about the condition of my transplanted kidney.