Last Monday was one of those days when my professional life joins my personal life and passions.
|Tesfaye Tesseme at King Towers
I visited the Manhattanville Housing Development to see the Senior Center
's art program, coordinated by Tesfaye Tessema, a NYCHA art consultant, who also happens to be an internationally recognized painter of Ethiopian origin. From there, I went on to King Towers, to see the children's art program that Tesfaye also teaches.
|Painting at Manhattanville Senior Center|
The King Houses
Community Center director, Dawn Foster, is of Jamaican origin, and her spouse is Egyptian. The Center's children are of a variety of origins: Jamaican, Senegalese, Puerto Rican, etc.
By the time I was done, it was too late to return to the office, so my friend and I walked towards Park Avenue on 116th Street, looking for a place to have a cup of coffee. We found a Moroccan hookah restaurant, "The Kiosk
." Instead of coffee, we had North African-style mint tea (made with green "gunpowder" tea and mint).
|Mint tea at The Kiosk|
Continuing north towards the MetroNorth Harlem station, I finally walked into a restaurant called "New Ivoire" that I'd catch a glimpse of from the train. It features the cuisine of Ivory Coast; the menu was interesting, but the decor was not too inspiring, and there seemed to be only men inside and outside of the restaurant--we didn't see a single woman. In one afternoon, how many African countries, from North to South, did I cover in one New York City neighborhood?
|Harlem E 116th Street bodega display|
|African mini-drums and skullcaps|
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