Duke has an odd habit of not celebrating traditional American holidays that happen to take place on Monday (Labor Day, Columbus Day, National Kazoo Day…none of that). Maybe they don’t want to give us the 3-day weekend, maybe they’ve forgotten that everyone else in the country recognizes these holidays, or maybe they like the idea of Duke being a bit hipster and shunning Columbus Day altogether. I don’t know the exact reason, but to make up for all these Mondays spent in class, Duke gives its undergraduate student body a “Fall Break.”
Fall Break typically takes place the second weekend of October, and we get the following Monday and Tuesday (huzzah!) off of class. When scheduling classes last spring, I made sure to have Fridays off as well, so took the opportunity to fly home to Boston for a nice five day vacation in the fall foliage. I got in early at 9 AM and spent the day in Jamaica Plain. JP has an incredibly interesting history and is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Boston. It’s seen a lot of changes in the last few years alone – lot of ongoing gentrification, for better or worse depending on how you feel about ongoing gentrification – but when walking around it’s clear JP has an affinity for good food. One of these places is City Feed and Supply, a local neighborhood grocery store that’s got a cool vibe and sells quirky yet overpriced food products and craft beer (Can you believe it? Hipsters live in JP).
At the end of the day though, the heart of City Feed is really a sandwich/coffee shop. They’ve got a great list of options listed on a chalkboard behind the cash register, and being the sucker that I am for everything simultaneously salty and sweet, I ordered the turkey and brie panini with granny smith apple slices on focaccia bread. It was sooo good, the brie was perfectly gooey and the crispness of the apples was spot on. It immediately put me in that “Fall in New England” state of mind and made me be a bit more understanding of Duke’s oddball policy of substituting Monday holidays for Fall Break.