Nicole's Diary - Page 8

Coming off a wonderful Mother's Day weekend I am quite disturbed by recent news locally here in NY. Trust me there's been plenty to set me off lately going around the country. But this one hits home.  I live in the NYC Tri-State area--NJ specifically--and since my Mother is more than 3,000 miles away, I visit my Harlem, NYC tribe for special Sundays that require family time. Because of my cousin being the guiding force my sister and I have for two Midwestern girls in the big bad city (not so bad, overall), I'm in Harlem a lot for dinner, community and a lot of laughs. I lived in Harlem for seven years and took it all in. It's nice to have a place to hang my hat as well. Yet this weekend while most of the local news focus was on the recent investigation of slave conditions of the nail salons what did not get as much buzz were the attacks in Central Park. Two violent attacks within hours of each other took place in a location extremely close to my heart--"The Jewel of New York" to which Central Park is often referred. It was my go-to place for working out, for peace of mind, for crying my eyes out, for a game of softball, for a play, for a film shoot, or just to be by myself among the thousands of city natives in our beautiful back yard. It is truly beautiful. And to learn that one of the attacks involved "a roving band of hoodlums one armed with a taser and another a knife" who left one girl who was enjoying the Park with her boyfriend, punched in the face, I can't stand for it. Central Park is the one getaway we have in a city of 8 million. And you have to travel in a gang to do something as cowardly as rob one or two people and think you'll get away with it? I feel bad for the victims, yes. But I feel worse for the kids who felt they needed to act in a criminal manner at 7:30pm on a gorgeous day. While it's still daylight, they could only do something so stupid and reckless while traveling in a pack--their tribe, amongst their peeps. Most Central Park lovers who were interviewed about the story said this will not keep them away.  But the kids responsible for this mayhem are not going to escape the vitriol of people like me who will put them in their place. Grow up. Know that this gang-like activity has caught the attention of the NYPD and a heck of a lot of people who spend millions of dollars to live across the street on all sides from what you may consider new territory where you can act out. My former residence, Harlem, borders the North. Bring your brand of foolishness to Central Park? You're in the wrong neighborhood for such shennanigans. And these friends you're surrounding yourself with in order to carry on this way will dump you the second you have to run.

  Snapshot from my walk in Overpeck Park, Bergen County, NJ. Nice, but doesn't compare to my Central Park.

Snapshot from my walk in Overpeck Park, Bergen County, NJ. Nice, but doesn't compare to my Central Park.