To All, A Warm Night

Wallach Place Through The Seasons

Our neighborhood circa 1995 was very different than it is now. So are we all.

Back then Craig and I were having a flirtation; a fun, slightly spicy continuing exchange across desks at work. It was fun, but as with all flirtations, there comes a moment of fish or cut bait. Christmas Eve, 1995, we had our first real date, and he set out to impress. It worked.

I’ll spare the details, save to say he impressed and then some. It was a memorable, long evening that ended up with my first visit to Wallach Place. (Craig was a perfect gentleman, for the record.)

I had lived in a variety of places, here and overseas. Among my neighborhoods were Briggs Park in Detroit, what was called Alphabet City in Manhattan, and Brixton in London. None of them garden spots, but all exciting urban landscapes. So, too, was Wallach in 1995 – dark, small, haunted by the past but full of possibility. A quarter of the houses, at least, were either abandoned or occupied by crack dealers; I can’t remember a house with a porch light burning.

In 1996 we never walked on the sidewalks; too dark and dangerous. The middle of the street was much safer, and strangely brighter. Always carried a knife just in case, although that didn’t always help in muggings. The only outposts were Pollys (now sadly gone) and Bens; even with places like “Andalusian Dog”, “State of the Union” and “The Big Cheese”, nobody prowled Wallach once the sun went down.  It was a challenge to visit  after dark, but one I was up for, and the reward has been rich.

Wallach Place and the larger neighborhood have changed dramatically since. Children now play with chalk drawings on the sidewalks, gardens are tended, neighbors and visitors stroll the streets in the dark (although, of course, urban challenges always remain) and nearly everything you could want is at a hand’s reach. Wallach Place has seen its challenges since and no doubt will in the future,, but has aged well since.  Much like Craig and I’s partnership.

Our holiday wish to all is that you may, in coming years, be able to say the same. We wish for you increased happiness, loving relationships, adventures while surmounting challenges, and neighbors and neighborhoods that get better with time.

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