As the summer came to a close I tried to milk the last of the good weather the city had to offer. Around this time most people are feeling the same way, especially with the cold winter, that is bound to lock us back into our homes, right around the corner. So New York was more lively than I’ve seen it in months, with restaurants doing curbside seating and COVID safe events and museums opening back up, the city feels back in its stride. With me being a mobile stoner, I had to take advantage of the shenanigans throughout the city, but on these couple of occasions I had a tour guide. Entering stage right, My Brother David Hernandez, Happy Munkey’s own COO and resident Fomo feed for all things lit in New York. David is a “multi”-Connoisseur of weed, food, and a few other things tucked in his hat, so when we link up for a night on the town we usually end up finding some pretty interesting places and we forget a couple too after smoking all night. Now when it comes to smoking here is where we’re different, he’s what we like to call a “Vegan” smoker because he only smokes papers, so he’s always ready to roll canon joints on a moments notice and if your lucky he’ll bust out the Puffco for some dabs of hash rosin. Usually I roll with a blunt or two, but as of late I’ve been rolling spliffs, which is weed rolled with tobacco (whether it’s fronto or cigarette it still counts).
Lately, David and I have been working down in the LES, recording the Happy Munkey podcast, and on occasion we’ll wrap a recording and explore the area. One time we walked from Essex to West 4th street smoking our respective jays and spliffs, checking out graffiti and feeling the vibe of the city. David likes to walk around the neighborhood cause he’s prone to bump into someone he knows, he’s like Da Mayor, he just be knowing people. While we’re walking around we got hungry after smoking and we walk down West 3rd street, which has a bunch of restaurants. Then David chose Spicy Moon, which funny enough, was a vegan Szechuan place with the best and fastest service I’ve gotten in a while. They had these general Tso’s mushroom balls that tasted like beef and had a crazy glaze with sesame seeds. And again David being the finesse king, we got some DonDon noodles on the house, which changed the game on how I perceive vegan food, it had beyond meat that was so savory in a thickened broth that tasted phenomenal. After dinner we had to hit the waitstaff with some Happy Munkey merch for the bomb ass dining experience.
After the grub we turned the corner and we were met with a party blasting deep house music out of Washington Square Park. There were some dancing old heads surrounded by what looked to be College kids and skaters, It was insane to see so many people together having fun, it was a vibe. Then on the other side of the fountain was a live band performing Indy hits to a small crowd of people. And just a bit further around the bend were blankets laid out full of art for sale. Right beside it was an art installation of stories written by strangers, some light hearted and some heart wrenching, but all meaningful.
Once we got our bearings, we looked at each other and felt like we were missing something. Everyone was smoking and we weren’t, so we posted up on the edge of the fountain by the house music crowd, and I pulled out the only Vegan joint I rolled for the day. We watched the skaters kick and heelflip around the fountain and hyped up a couple of the eccentric characters that stumble upon the festivities. Usually you’ll see an oddly dressed dancer or a herd of drunk guys migrating across the park to the next party. After a while, we ashed the jay, but by then the NYPD started to quiet down the parties as the park was closing at 12am. So we exited the park through the beautifully lit Washington square Arch and hopped on some Citibikes for a scenic trip back uptown and to sleep off some of this high for the next adventure.
- Rafael Hernandez