Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Sundays in Harlem

For the past 8 years, whenever I visit New York, I spend my Sundays in Harlem. I start out by attending church service at the Abyssinian Baptist Church, the Rev. Calvin O. Butts, III, presiding. This Sunday was very uplifting. It was a celebration of freedom in honor of the 4th and 5th of July (African freedom in NY) and commemorated the 200 year church anniversary. The sermon was excellent and the choir angelic.

After church, I also go to Sylvia's Queen of Soul restaurant on Lenox Avenue where I partake in some of the most delectable southern cuisine around. This sunday, I had the catfish and grits with a side of collard greens as I decided to combine breakfast and lunch. It was soooooooo good. I made acquaintance with the famed but very down to earth proprietor, Mrs. Sylvia Woods who very graciously agreed to take a photo with me.

We also discussed the fact that we shared a common family surname, Pressley/Presley from South Carolina. I told her about how my great-great-great grandfather, Stephen Pressley who had been brought from South Carolina to Louisiana by the Witherspoon family. We both agreed that we probably were related somehow since we both come from a family of really good cooks.

Again, the food there is excellent so if you ever get a chance, please visit Sylvia Soul Food in Harlem.

I ended my day in Harlem by just walking around perusing the various shops and historical landmarks. The weather was beautiful and I did not want the day to end but unforturnately it had to.

Anyway, if you are visiting the New York area, Harlem is a must see.

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