The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

too acute

with 3 comments

The concrete devastations are nepenthe to me.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

This past weekend was a rather busy one, with a trifecta of tours completed. On Friday, a short walk around Dutch Kills with a group from LaGuardia Community College, a Saturday tour with the Obscura Society explored the Insalubrious Valley, and Sunday found me leading a group from the Brooklyn Brainery through the Poison Cauldron. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again- to be seen by so many diminishes me.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

The shots in today’s post were gathered while I was headed for last weekend’s excursion- a Newtown Creek Alliance sponsored event which was conducted as part of the Open House NY weekend event on October 12. This was a novel concept, a “surf and turf” wherein my walking tour met up with a party of rowers from the North Brooklyn Boat Club at the Maspeth Avenue Plank Road. Along the way, I noticed this Yeshiva bus parked in a bus stop. The driver must have literally interpreted what “bus stop” means. This was a Saturday morning, so the chances that this vehicle was still in place on Sunday morning are pretty high, but I wasn’t there to see it moved so I can’t comment authoritatively. As the saying in my old neighborhood used to go- now Hasidim, now ya don’t.

- photo by Mitch Waxman

All over the upper Creek, there seems to have been some sort of bloom going on for the last couple of weeks, as the water had assumed a chalky green coloration. Last year, while onboard the Riverkeeper boat, just such a happenstance was witnessed. Captain Lipscomb, who operates the boat and scientific equipment onboard, investigated the phenomena and offered the theory that this was a bacterial bloom rather than the effects of an industrial spill or leak. It seems that there are lakes in upstate New York which also suffer from low oxygen levels in the water, and that they exhibit a similar coloration and turbidity as witnessed at the Maspeth Creek tributary in the shot above.

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Written by Mitch Waxman

October 21, 2013 at 8:02 am

3 Responses

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  1. I grew up in Greenpoint, left in 1970. Never saw Canada Geese on the creek back then, so it must be a lot cleaner.

    Walt Kuciej

    October 21, 2013 at 2:02 pm

    • Last year, I saw an Osprey near Van Iderstines, and a family of Great Blue Herons nesting in the Kos Bridge. Calvary has Red Tail Hawks now.

      Mitch Waxman

      October 21, 2013 at 2:04 pm

  2. That’s a great shot of those geese! Most impressive -

    Deniz

    October 23, 2013 at 2:42 pm


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