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Immigration demo in Union Square; East Village; Katz's Deli; Les Paul: New York - 1st May 2006

After meeting up with old school-mate Phil outside the entrance to PATH station, by the site of the Twin Towers, in the financial district of downtown Manhattan, we head off to the East Village to find food. However, we are greeted on our exit from the subway in Union Square (on 3rd and 14th) to the sight of thousands of people protesting the new immigration bill recently passed by Congress. Demonstrations are "photographer's gold", so Nosher piles in to the crowd to get a few photos (mindfull of the need for food and the time constraints of getting back to midtown in order to see Les Paul on guitar later on). After half-an-hour watching the action, we resume our long trek through the very-Bohemian East Village over to the famous Katz's Deli - where the fake-orgasm scene in "When Harry Met Sally..." was filmed - for a couple of huge pastrami Ruebens and a beer. Afterwards, we head back to the Iridium Jazz Club on Broadway, near Times Square, to see the inventor of the electric guitar - Les Paul (he of the Gibson Les Paul) - play. Despite being nearly 91 and not as nimble as once, he's still mesmerising and tells a good yarn (and the band, especially the piano guy, is amazing). The most frustrating thing was that the venue actually allows camera use, but I'd left poshCam back in the hotel room. Hey ho - next time...

next album: Midtown Manhattan: Bryant Park to Central Park, New York - 2nd May 2006
previous album: Scenes from Manhattan and Ground Zero, New York - 1st May 2006

A huge crowd mills around Union Square in lower Manhattan

No demo is complete without someone waving around a Che Guevara placard

Power to the people!

More of the crowd in the evening light

A young Latino guy holds the Mexican flag

Get them politically active early on

A small child is waved around some more

NYPD observers the goings-on, and cordons-off the street

Colourful flags and banners

The crowd continues down 3rd Avenue

As we leave the demo behind, there's a cool building-sized advert to be seen

Looking way back into mid-town (down a telephoto lens), the Chrysler Building can be seen along a 'New York Canyon'

Brownstones in East Village

A pleasant leafy square

East Village library

Freaks. Says it all, really

Street-scenes from Bohemia. Not the 'counter-culture' guy on the steps flipping the bird

Funky goth shop

Ethnic food shop

Shoes on a traffic-light arm (apparently meaning 'get drugs here')

A large collection of seemingly-unattended handbags dangle from a chain-link fence

Inside the famous Katz's Deli - the circle sign pointing out the Harry/Sally connection can be seen dangling above

Mail-order meat products available from Katz's salami counter

Phil sits back for a moment just before we leave to catch a cab back to midtown

Emergency cell-phone photo of the legendary Les Paul

Emergency cell-phone photo of the legendary Les Paul

Emergency cell-phone photo of the legendary Les Paul, and guest vocalist Stephanie Powers

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A huge crowd mills around Union Square in lower Manhattan