The rain blew sideways in Battery Park last night. Big Ken Carlton pulled his Yankees cap low and angled against the wind. His massive hands held down the folding table loaded with the Yankees T-shirts that he sells to visitors heading for the Statue of Liberty.
“The weather’s getting worse,” he yelled to his neighbors. “Let’s get out of here.”
Carlo, who was setup next to Big Ken, sells framed photos of famous New Yorkers: Derek Jeter at Yankee Stadium, John Lennon in front of the Statue of Liberty and King Kong on top of the Empire State Building. His heavy merchandise requires a large cart and with the storm closing fast everyone in the area started piling on for a quick getaway.
Big Ken packed his T-shirts, Alexis loaded boxes of foam Liberty crowns and Jose threw on two crates filled with water globes and ceramic models of Yankee Stadium.
The cart was heavy and sagged in the middle, but the four men – Big Ken, Carlo, Alexis and Jose – got it rolling through the park. A gust of wind gave it a big push at the mouth of Pearl Street and Carlo jumped on for the ride.
He flew through Whitehall and on toward Broad as the rest of the guys raced to catch up. They found Carlo collecting boxes after the wind blown cart crashed into a construction barrier.
“Are you okay?” they all asked.
“That was a helluva ride,” Carlo yelled. “Let’s go back and try it again.”
“You’re crazy,” they all said.
Carlo nodded and smiled.