I didn’t take my first trip to Gotham City until I was 28 but up until that time one of my main images of the city – besides, ya know, people having harsh violence inflicted on them – was locals and tourists alike standing pleasantly in front of a hot dog cart while the hot dog vender garnished dogs with condiments (of course, a minute later they were probably pummeled and robbed by New York thugs). I’d seen the image of people buying frankfurters in New York on TV and in movies so many times that it just seemed like the thing to do when one visits or lives in the Big Apple.
I continued through the food stalls of the covered market, where the scent of raw meats mingled with the charcoal from the BBQ pits set up to grill them. Tripe, chicken feet, whole rabbits with the fur still on. Your wish was their command.
Q: What kind of person were you in your twenties? What were your goals and do you think you would have ever imagined you’d be where you are now?
A: I was a complete asshole. Selfish, larcenous, druggy, loud, stupid, insensitive and someone you would not want to have known. I would have robbed your medicine cabinet had I been invited to your house.
Our favorite chef and cranky traveler, Anthony Bourdain
'm sitting at a bayside café in San Francisco, on a sun-spattered, blue-sky afternoon, reading my journal and traveling back to a similar day three years ago at a lakeside café in northern Italy, when I re-learned one of travel's great lessons: the importance of immersing yourself in the moment.
As the summer travel season unfolds, it’s a good reminder that travel’s gifts can stay with us long after the journey ends.