Due to my deep affection with everything Russian, I had been wanting to go to the New York neighborhood Brighton Beach, also known as Little Odessa, for a long time. So on our second visit to “the City”, as they say in New Jersey, we decided to go on a long drive through Brooklyn and find out, how Russian the place really is.
Well, I can tell you that it’s very Russian: For a few blocks on Brighton Beach Avenue, you will find nothing but Russian stores, Russian restaurants and Russian speaking people. So that was already a great experience for me. What turned our afternoon at Brighton Beach into one of the highlights of our trip, was the fact that Brighton Beach, as the name suggests, is on the seaside, and that we picked a perfect summer day for our visit. And so we got to have a Russian dinner, all with borscht, pelmeni and of course a carafe of vodka, on a lively boardwalk, overlooking a sunny, beautiful beach.
From Brighton Beach, it’s only a short walk to Coney Island Beach, so we got to see that legendary part of New York as well. The amusement park near the beach certainly isn’t what it used to be in former times, but it was still interesting to check out.
I was glad to find the Coney Island Steeplechase that the Velvet Underground once sang about:
(Written in Las Vegas, Nevada, July 24, 2012)