Jul/Aug
2012

Cheap Thrills on Broadway

Written by C.G. Worrell
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0055With a smile on my face, I drive down the road to pick up my good friend, K.T. I crank open the sunroof and sing along with the radio. It’s our shared day off—that special time when we eat lunch, gossip and shop. Our goal today: an afternoon of fun on Broadway without spending a fortune. It’s easy to do, if you know where to go!

With a smile on my face, I drive down the road to pick up my good friend, K.T. I crank open the sunroof and sing along with the radio. It’s our shared day off—that special time when we eat lunch, gossip and shop. Our goal today: an afternoon of fun on Broadway without spending a fortune. It’s easy to do, if you know where to go!

A frugal feast
We begin on north Broadway at Fiesta Café for lunch. Clemente and Serafin bring us “the usual”—two bowls of steaming “caldo de pollo” (chicken soup). Chock full of vegetables, shredded chicken and diced avocado, this ain’t your grandma’s chicken noodle soup (unless she’s from Oaxaca). Add salt, pepper, a spritz of lime juice, three glubs of Tapatio sauce and olé! You have a concoction that will make your taste buds sing. Cost for two: $17.

Bitz And pieces
Next, we pop across Broadway into Kismet, a consignment store where the owner artfully stages the merchandise in thematic showrooms we’ve dubbed the country kitchen, Victorian parlor and chic boutique. Wonder what we’ll find today? An antique flour sifter? A vintage chaise lounge? Or a gently-used pair of Manolo Blahniks? Today’s score sits in the bargain room: a hand-thrown clay pot. It possesses a utilitarian caveman quality that appeals to my sense of aesthetics. I’ll add it to my collection of primitive pottery from kiln tours and thrift stores. Cost: $4.We tootle down the road to Great Harvest Bread Co. for dessert. K.T. and I share one—exactly one—oatmeal, chocolate chip cookie. We like Great Harvest because the wait staff is “granola-cute” and the delicious cookies are as big as your face. The perfect finish to lunch: $1.50. Next stop: Art Bitz and Cheri’s Boutique. As soon as K.T. and I park, we’re pulled in by the tractor beam of sparkle and color emanating from the windows. These comingled bazaars offer an eclectic mix of contemporary art and glamorous accessories. A glittering hair comb of amethyst rhinestones grabs my attention. I can’t help it; I’m drawn to shiny things just like a raven. Caw-caw. Cost for hair bling: $9.Still eager for bargains, we can’t resist popping across Broadway to Refashion. This lofty consignment store carries upscale home decor and funky apparel. I’m checking out a polished brass spittoon when K.T. discovers her muse: a fabulous hippie belt of macramé and fringe that would make Janis Joplin proud. It’s a steal at $4.25.

Goodwill Hunting
Lastly, we buzz south a couple miles to the treasure hunter’s paradise: Goodwill. Behind the kitchenware, shabby-chic furniture and sports equipment, we find a bounty of well-organized books. I snag “Funny in Farsi” ($.99), and K.T. picks “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood” ($1.99). These stories will provide hours of relaxing entertainment after our shopping expedition. Whoa, would you look at the time! It’s 3:25 p.m. already. The kids will be back from school soon. We head home with our precious Broadway booty. The grand total for this afternoon’s adventures for two: $39.98 (tax and tip included). Cha-ching!

C.G. Worrell is a freelance writer and local veterinarian at Heritage Pet Hospital.