On Friday, I took the train up to New York from DC to spend the weekend in Brooklyn with my brother and to also see my grandmother in the Bronx. On the train, I started Netherland by Joseph O’Neill about post 9/11 New York as seen from the viewpoint of a Dutchman who discovers the West Indian and South Asian cricket playing world. I thought the novel would serve as a good backdrop to visiting my brother’s very West Indian Brooklyn neighborhood on the south side of Prospect Park near Flatbush. As a matter of fact, it was — most of which though I finished on the train ride back to DC.
On Saturday, my bro and and I took the Q train to Coney Island to check out where both my grandmother and father had enjoyed spending summer days when they were children. I suppose I don’t have to mention that Coney Island is not what it used to be. Nevertheless, it (as well as the ride there) is definitely fascinating with its mix of cultures that outside of New York would never logically inhabit the same space. And that is pretty much what Netherland is about. O’Neill writes, Continue reading