Saturday, January 7, 2012

Cookman Avenue, Asbury Park, New Jersey

If you haven't noticed, I'm trying to share my Asbury Park photos about every other day. There are a ton of them!!! So I figured, I'd try to entertain with some other posts in between so you don't get bored. Even though, I don't see how that is possible.... I am missing this place....

This is Cookman Ave. It's only about a mile or 2 away from the hotel we were staying at. In the past years, we have walked up there, but this year we opted to drive up and pay for parking so we could avoid the wicked wind! This particular little downtown shop is full of lots of little shops and eateries. Not too much seemed to be open. I'm not sure if it was just the time of day or the time of year or what the deal was.

These ones I photographed were all inside a place called Shoppes at the Arcade. When you first go in there is a shop called Flying Saucers. Luckily, I had been doing some research on places to check out while on vacation and I came across this one. It mostly sells retro kitchenware, along with lots of Tille and Asbury Park related merch.  In there store, there was a stairwell that led downstairs connecting it to an Antique Emporium. This place was huge! The first time we went in, we didn't pay the parking meter so I skimmed super quickly, but the second time, we spend a good bit of time rummaging through all the little areas. There was some pretty interesting things there. However, a lot of it I found to be kind of over priced. See, that's a tough one. I typically don't find a lot of good junk too often around here so it was really hard to resist the urge to buy all the cute, vintage knick-knacks. I think I did pretty well, though! We really only ended up coming out of there with a bag full of records. They may have been a little over priced too but they were in great conditions and absolute must-haves for our growing collection!

So after we were done exploring here, we went to another shop down the hall and it ended up being a really sweet music, movie, poster, record store. We scored a couple more vinyls there and chatted a bit with the lady working there. Everyone was quite nice that I had came across while on our trip. After that, we wandered around a bit more downstairs but most of the other shops were closed. Downstairs is where the original black and white Palace photobooth is located, as I had mentioned in a previous post. We stopped there both times we ventured to Cookman. The second time, we were a little more prepared and Michael and I ended up getting some ridiculously cute photos that I know I'm going to cherish forever.

So besides out little shopping spree, I went to Cookman one more time the day before we left. There was another record shop down the street a bit that had a music instrument/equipment store down in the basement. This is where the meet and greet for The Bouncing Souls was held this year. I'm not sure where it's been the past couple years because I don't think I've even ever went when I did purchase the 4 day pass with the meet and greet included. So I sucked it up and went this time. Not that I didn't want to go, I'm just not one to be overly excited about meeting a band. I have saw them play sooo many times in my short lifetime already that I sort of just feel like I know them already. It's kind of strange to explain but especially with The Souls, they have a very tight knit fan base and during this annual event, you start to recognize the fans. I probably even know some of their names. You know what their road crew looks like and their friends. You know the staff to the venue and the photographers that are always at their shows. Going there feels like a home away from home. I get their jokes and their personalities and their little quirks. So needless to say, I mean, I was nervous. What do I even have to say? I got the butterflies in my stomach, I'm not going to lie, but it was very laid back and down to earth. They are very nice guys. Very polite and personable. We didn't converse too much. Just some hello's, how's it going, and see ya' later at the show type deal. I did talk to Bryan a bit more. I had said that I was from the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area and that it was like a tradition to come down every winter for the shows. He told me that he wish he had met me a week earlier because they found an old bingo machine on Craiglist in the Pittsburgh area that they were going to get for their show this year. I thought that was a fun little tidbit.  I got them to sign a poster which is looking most lovely hanging on my wall.

I think I shall frame it and enjoy it always. So I did get quite acquainted with Cookman Ave. It was the basic route I knew how to get to the Main St. of Asbury Park. We did drive around more this year than in the past. We went out further for food because last year was kind of hellish, eating vending machine food for days. It's good to get more of a feel for the whole town, just besides the boardwalk, beach areas. I'm feeling a lot more confident driving around town. I hope someday I can navigate there without any directions. I would like to keep doing this for as long as I'm able.

"So tonight I'll call you from a fourth-street payphone
But I'll sleep on the beach if I ain't got a ride
Someday I'll buy you that house on Cookman
We could sleep on the beach all night
Sleep on the beach if we ain't got a ride
Sleep on the beach all night"

 xo, Linds

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