Sunday, December 12, 2010

Da Bronx G

Sunday was a really miserable day in NYC, drizzly and cold…I was going to sit around and mope all day until I decided I could do that on a train to somewhere as far out of Manhattan as possible. So I gathered some Radiohead and took the first train out to nowhere. 45mins later, I could get as far north as the Bronx and got off at Van Cortland Park at the end of the line. I hadn’t properly thought my plans through, and probably should have braced myself a bit better, but I was in a mellow state of mind and didn’t particularly care where I was. Besides, I was always curious about the Bronx…I have something of an interest in experiencing the best and worst of everything when I travel. And I had dispositions of the area, of course…but it wasn’t as bad as anticipated. The build up of the area is very much like what we rode through in suburban Brooklyn; built up housing commisionaries in dull, brown blocks hundreds at a time…ghostly streets and desolate parks. The poverty was a lot more confronting…walking out of the station there was a homeless community and one single mother was trying to change her baby’s nappy on the street in the cold. But what I did notice was different to Brooklyn was a sense of community despite the low-income social ratio. It was a little more old-worldly, and you could tell people looked out and cared for each other a lot more in the Bronx. Which was slightly uplifting.

Van Cortland Park is a massive baseball park that took me ½ an hour to wander around. It was empty, which was REALLY strange…it was the first time I’d actually been alone in a situation and place in New York with no one around. The paths were littered in fallen autumn leaves and I have never seen such a squirrel population! So that was actually really, really nice to sit in and mull over the atmosphere.

I have no stereotypical thoughts of New York now, because there is such a diversity of people and cultures. And everyone unites. It is really inspiring.

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