Optimism

This past week was really frustrating. I was hoping to meet a Realtor that used to work in the Meatpacking District for the past three decades and it seemed like it was going really well. He already tentatively agreed to meet me and all I had left to do was schedule an appointment. Unfortunately something came up and he canceled our meeting. When I tried asking for a short phone call or an email I was told that he has a family issue and will not be available.

I was hoping to get some more information and testimonials from people who pass by the neighborhood, so I spend around two hours walking around and asking people questions. None of them, not even one (!!) had memories from the older times of the Meatpacking District. I guess this is a very solid proof to my assumption – the neighborhood has changed its character and by that – its crowd of people. From the people that I did interview, I tried approaching people who looked local, not tourists, and relatively older. But all I got from them was sentences like “I love this neighborhood, I come here at least once a month for the past five years and I love how it’s constantly developing” or “This is the best place in New York!”.  No one could actually tell me about the past times in the Meatpacking District. But I am not losing hope, of course! I have a lot more plans for this week and I look forward to them!

Luckily, even with not many supportive testimonials, I still have plenty of archival materials (Thank god for the New York Times) and I am happy that I have a clear argument. The only thing still missing is a little support from the real people, and I really hope I can come up with something original and unique during this week. Wish me luck!

 

1 Comment

  • I wish you better luck this week, Shiran! As we discussed a couple weeks ago, maybe you could drop by some of the “old school” businesses that have likely been in the area for quite some time — e.g., the few remaining meat processing places, etc. By venturing *off* the tourist routes and into the (few remaining) undeveloped back lots, you might find folks with a longer historical perspective.