July 15, 2010

Chestnut Hill Dining Guide

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Sanctimony was the soup of the day’
Mt. Airy man was ‘hoodwinked’ by cult in India

Bruce is 70 years old, but he still tools around town on his 35-year-old BMW motorcycle. In 1980 Kravetz rode from New York City to Santa Cruz, California, on a standard, non-motorized bicycle. The trip took six weeks.

Ed. Note: Mt. Airy resident Bruce Kravetz, 70, is a professional photographer, adverturer and world traveler who had journeyed by himself to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Sudan, Kanya, Tanzania, Indonesia and countless other countries. He owned Pacific Rim, an import/export business in Manayunk, from 1992 to 2006, and he would travel around the world buying crafts to sell in his store. During one five-month stay in India, he had an intense experience with a cult run by a charismatic leader named Rajneesh. Here is that story:

Rajneesh is the guru who rode around in a fleet of Rolls Royces, and after many years in India, he tried to take over a town in Oregon called Antelope, which eventually went belly-up from all sorts of bad goings-on like power trips and bugged rooms and people guarding the compound with automatic weapons. But of course, cults all start with good intentions. I happened on the scene about six years before it all went to pieces.

Cooperage: great food, wine, whiskey and song

Jen Kremer, sommelier and co-owner of Cooperage, pours a glass of fine red wine for a thirsty customer. (Photos by Len Lear)

I thought maybe I needed a new eyeglass prescription when I checked out the Web site for the new restaurant called Cooperage: A Wine & Whiskey Bar, located in the Curtis Center, 7th and Sansom Streets. (I have seen its address listed in two local newspapers as 601 Walnut St., but that’s not where it is. It’s a long story.)

The following words are on the Web site: “Complimentary valet parking is available every Friday  & Saturday, beginning at 5:30 p.m.” Now I thought I would see a Jewish president of Saudi Arabia before I would see a center city restaurant offering free valet parking on weekends, so we called the restaurant to see if my aging eyes were playing tricks on me. They were not.

I have seen valet parking signs in center city in recent weeks hawking prices from $16 to $22, so I was willing to go to Cooperage for that reason alone. When we arrived at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 26, a beautiful young lady with a ring in her nose, a hairdo from ancient Egypt and a million dollar smile gave us a ticket for the car and ushered us inside. This young lady was like the Energizer bunny; every time we looked up, she was rushing around doing one chore or another, such as watering plants outdoors, where customers were dining on a perfect early summer evening. She logged more miles than a marathon runner.

Be compassionate to those seeking summer jobs

“Whatever your hand finds to do, do with your might …”——Ecclesiastes 9:10

Do you remember your first job? I know I certainly do.

At age 11, I began to babysit. My first customers were a family with four children. I cared for their darlings for 35 cents an hour. (Note: Please don’t contact me. My rates have gone up!) These were the little charmers who, on my watch, fed their goldfish down the garbage disposal.


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