i know i am a part of it, the gentrification of harlem. i know. but i do try to do my part to invest in the community businesses as they are. in my last relationship i also assigned real feelings to certain spots and businesses in the neighborhood- they signaled times when i really felt like a part of something, like my life was a cohesive whole.
today i tried to go out to breakfast at one of the few spots that carries no negative connotation-- one of the few places we never had a fight, that never came into an argument. an unsullied spot. it was called harlem renaissance, and it was on 116th, near lenox. i walked up to the storefront this morning to find the security gate down and a for rent sign on the awning.
i actually had to catch my breath. i felt a tear. i am sentimental about places and what they mean and maintaining them and this place that meant happiness to me and meant love to me and meant community to me is gone.
i guess this won't be the last time, but it definitely caught me this time. as i move again, i hope there will be something left here in a year that i recognize. there's a good chance, though, that the gentrification will move on, and carry me in tow.