May 27, 2004
Jane Galt has a piece about the pros and cons of raising babies in a city environment. I’ve come to the conclusion lately, that should I ever have children, there is only one place for me to raise them: Brooklyn. It’s not just because that’s where I was raised and that’s where my parents and friends still live. Brooklyn is close enough to Manhattan that the kids have access to everything the city offers but far enough away that you can have a house and a car with a driveway. There’s plenty of public transportation, I was taking busses and trains by the time I was 8 or 9. I’m writing about south Brooklyn here, not the pseudo-Manhattan areas of north Brooklyn like Williamsburg, Brooklyn Heights and Greenpoint (and yes, even you Park Slope and Carroll Gardens). The places I mean are Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge, Sheepshead Bay, and the little neighborhoods with no names along Coney Island Avenue and Ocean Parkway.
This is a strange thing for me to believe, that Brooklyn is the ideal place to raise kids. I got out of there as soon as I could and I spent many years talking badly about my hometown. Now, though, after living elsewhere for about ten years, I really can’t imagine settling down anywhere else. How things do change.