The trouble with living in a tourist destination is occasionally you find yourself caught in a tourist trap. You see a place that looks popular and assume that it is popular for a legitimate reason, a legitimate reason having nothing to do with a badly written travel guide or shamelessly effective mass marketing.
One day, we were wandering around Manhattan when my husband’s blood sugar became dangerously low (i.e., our relationship was going to be on the rocks if I didn’t locate sustenance within the next five minutes.) It was at that precise moment that we stumbled upon Ess-a-Bagel. It looked promising. It looked classic. There was a line spilling into the street. Surely, the bagels must be good, right?
We realized our mistake about twenty minutes into the wait as we started eavesdropping on all of the other people in the restaurant, which let’s face it, is what you do when you are married. My husband looked at me with that terrified and knowing look that a local gives another local when caught in a tourist trap. We’d experienced places like this before, in Charleston. He leaned in and whispered, “Everyone in here is from out of town.” But it was too late. We were committed. I picked up my camera phone and snapped an absurd picture of the man behind the counter. If I wasn’t gong to have a decent lunch, at least I would have a decent blog post.
The verdict? Meh. Not horrible. Definitely not worth the hour wait. I can get better bagels in less than ten minutes near my office.