Monday, May 2, 2016

Chinatown Initiation

What is a Chinatown initiation? I know that this title will have some people thinking about gangs, especially given my previous posts about Bob Halloran's book about John Willis, "White Devil."
Maybe they will think I am talking about some sort of Kung Fu ceremony.

Actually I am talking about a young mother's story, about the first time she really felt a part of Chinatown.

 "A few weeks ago, a guy I only know by face from Chinatown left his kid with me to bring to his bus stop, while I was walking my daughter to daycare. We have seen each other many times before, but I definitely don't know his name or anything. Anyway, I have never felt more like I was a part of the Chinatown community than that moment, even though I literally just guided the kid down a few blocks on our way to daycare...I could not imagine that happening in another neighborhood."


Technically I live in JP now and I have left my kids at the playground while other families watched them. But I do remember a tightness of Community in Chinatown Growing up, especially in the Castle Square area and especially among the Chinese. I mean yeah we were robbed all the time, and there were problems with how it was then. But even among all that parents did look out for each other. In the high rises Some floors even left all the doors, not only unlocked... but open with the kids running up and down the hallways. Not every floor, and a lot of that changed even within my time there. I mean if your neighbors are selling drugs... not as good and suddenly everyone shuts the doors.

A lot of the old timers have been talking about that sense of community and how it seems to be lost a bit. Nice to know that in some ways it still is there.
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