South East Brooklyn

Marine Pk Marsh

I abide in South East Brooklyn…I live there.

Most people don’t realize there are marshes in Brooklyn. When they think marshes their minds drift to Louisiana, south Florida, never Brooklyn. The truth is quite beautiful marshes and protected wetlands stretch for miles.  The photo at right is of Gerritsen Beach, not technically part of South East Brooklyn, but nearby.  NETWORK THAN DIE, a contemporary whodunit I hope to release next year, opens with a body on a reedy beach in Gerritsen Beach. Hurricane Sandy kind of messed me up by decimating Gerritsen Beach and I’m going to have rewrite a bit to be accurate about the local scenery and neighborhoods.

Barren Island, Bergen Beach, Flatlands, Georgetown, Marine Park, and Mill Basin are the local communities in South East Brooklyn. It’s a hop-skip-and-a-jump from the Queens border and an easy drive to Long Island.

Out of towners think Brooklynites are rude and don’t speak well. You know…they think we say dees, and dems, and doughs. And you’ll find some of that. There’s even a Brooklyn neighborhood-style walk. The shoulders swing back and forth in opposition to the stride of the feet. Sometimes the head bobs up and down, but only slightly. To get the full effect, it helps a lot if you’re wearing a black leather jacket and dark glasses.

I know the South East Brooklyn where the neighborhoods used to be populated with Italians, Irish, and Jews. The Irish were cops, the Jews were the teachers and accountants, and the Italians were in the construction trades unions, or some will claim, in the mob. Now you’ll see turbans and saris on the streets. Tonight is Rosh Hashanah and I can hear my religious Jewish neighbors blowing the shofar as they usher in the Jewish New Year.

It’s all changed and yet it’s all still the same.

11 thoughts on “South East Brooklyn

  1. Karen Deikun

    My attitude to Brooklyn was formed by going to a wonderful Barbershop Quartet competition in which a group called “The Brooklyn Accent” performed. They were great and I loved their name. I figured such beautiful music came from a place with a deep heart and I loved the tongue-in-cheek name of the group. That was 30 years ago or more. But I’ve always had a soft spot for Brooklyn since then.

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    1. Darla, My entire Sanctuary Point series has a sub-theme about the settling of this village. It is a fictional town, but it could have happened that way. The first settlers to Long Island were Dutch and I made those first settlers to the village missionaries. Then the English came. You had some Germans during the American Revolution. This population remained like this for duration of the 1800s. Then you had immigrant refugees from WWII. Poles, Ukrainians, Scandinavians, Czechs, those from the Balkans. And the same after WWII with lots of Jews coming in then.

      My Czech immigrants came to Sanctuary Point after WWI. Their sons fought in WWII for America. And I have a fictitious Scottish family who is a shipping family. They own a shipyard. They’re very proper now, but their graddad added mightily to the family fortunes during prohibition by running whisky in one of his pleasure craft.

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    1. Tracy, The marshy area is in a locale where you have to know Brooklyn to know it’s there. If you ever get to Brooklyn again, I’ll show you around…since we’re writing buddies.

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