Tuesday, June 16, 2009

High Line Park (2): Grounded

Here is a sampling of the praise that some of my friends have heaped upon the new High Line park: stunning, a healing chamber, the best thing to happen to New York City in recent memory, elating, a Zen garden, a genuine work of art.

I liked my inaugural visit to the High Line, too, but first I got cranky about not being able to enter the park where I wanted to.

As a result, once again, I felt sadly out of sync in an exuberant moment of collective joy.

Eager for a corrective experience, I was thrilled when my pal L.—who “loves, loves, loves” the High Line—suggested that we meet for a stroll along its full length.

We waited out the rains and obediently headed for Gansevoort Street entrance, only to find it blocked off.

On this night, we were informed, the park was open to the public only from 18th to 20th streets. The rest of it was being used for a private party—“a fundraiser for the park,” a staffer reassured us. If we went up to 16th Street, she said, we could watch the celebrities arriving.

I had another flashing, curmudgeonly thought, this time about the ongoing privatization of all varieties of civic life, but money is money and I let it go. It was a pretty evening, and as it turned out it was also lovely to walk at ground level, on the public streets.

1 comment:

Gerry Gomez Pearlberg said...

Oy! You've had back luck with this High Line thingy. I hope three's the charm.