On my way to Ghana via New York City, and my friend Lara–a superb novelist and screenwriter–graciously offered me a place to crash for a couple nights. Her neighborhood is Fort Greene, a little bit south of the hipster mecca Williamsburg, and the frontier of gentrification. Had a spectacular South African dinner at Madiba, a mango capirinha at one of Esquire’s Best Bars called The Hideaway, and the polar opposite, a local dive bar called the Alibi, where Lara was told by a friend that we’d just missed the barbeque (dammit). Fort Greene is truly a mix of incomes, races, and sexual orientations. Maybe I should go back to graduate school for urban planning with my interest in Jane Jacobs (read The Rise and Fall of Great American Cities, if you haven’t already, about the impact (mostly negative) of urban renewal in places like Boston’s West End) and gentrification in general.
Our flight takes off today for Ghana and I’ll be off the grid for most of the next six weeks. Lots to post about the travels around Ghana and Togo. And my folks’ 60th wedding anniversary in Des Moines as well! Stay tuned.