Alison's Writing Portfolio · On Food & Drink · On Places & Travel

My Urban Nature – and Around

HawkI couldn’t believe it when I spotted this red tail hawk in Washington Square Park on Thursday. I consider the park my personal backyard, and spend much time there reading and writing and thinking. I hadn’t seen a hawk there before, but it seems this is one of my neighbors, one of a family of hawks that lives on a 12th floor ledge at NYU’s Bobst Library. There’s a live stream of their nest here.

Lately, it’s seemed to me that the line between the city and the country has become blurry. On Sunday, I visited the Union Square Greenmarket and found all of the farms that I liked to frequent when I lived in Columbia County.  And a few weeks ago, I toured a number of very cool farms in Manhattan.

This has been thrilling me to the core. As I explained:

I grew up in New York City as it was coming out of the urban blight of the late 1970s. The city parks in my middle class Manhattan neighborhood were full of trash, rat and junkies, my daily life did not include cows, barns, fields or anything, it seemed, from which anything edible could plausibly grow. My personal experience with plant life was limited to the cactus on a window sill, and flowers made of silk that grew only dust.


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