Neighborhood tour

When I have a morning or afternoon free, and I’m not feeling too far behind on work-related tasks or domestic chores, I go for a walk around my new neighborhood. I am struck by the architectural quirks of many of the buildings that I walk past on these mid-day jaunts

and the European aspect of some of the churches and parochial schools.

Another simple pleasure has been reading the names of many of the buildings. I grew up in a house without a name so I’ve always been enamored of the idea of a home with a name, not just a number. I was particularly charmed by this one, since George tends to hog the limelight…

Jackson Heights is a family-friendly neighborhood, with several blocks of residential post-war buildings and one or two-story homes with neat little gardens. In fact, I think I live in a stretch called the Garden District because of these neat hedgerows and orderly inner courtyards. The title is a bit grandiose, since these gardens

are not exactly Versailles

Formal gardens at Versailles palace
Neptune Basin


but I can see why the area has the moniker.

Jackson Heights also presents you with striking contrasts to these quieter stretches, like this busy block near the railway station, complete with a mounted police officer checking his cellphone,

or this noisy plane taxiing down practically on top of these houses on its descent into La Guardia

or this bustling French patisserie that serves buttery quiche or seasonal macarons just a few blocks north of Little India.

But more on that pocket of Jackson Heights another time…

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