The runners gather at the starting line each morning for a few moments of silent reflection before the day begins. Vasu, with the backpack, just arrived and is rushing to get ready.
On the first day of this year's race, several hours in, Vasu stopped mid-block to speak to me just as I was leaving. In Russian-tinged English, he started saying something about my mother, and I thought he must have had me confused with someone else, because how would he know my mother? Then I remembered that my parents had visited New York last summer and we had stopped by the race, although it was only for a few minutes. But it was apparently long enough to make an impression. Vasu went on to tell me that my mom has a beautiful smile, and that he still remembers it all this time later. He just wanted to let me know, and then he kept running.
Recently opened on the former site of the old Blissenbach Marina, a contaminated boatyard owned by the now-defunct Marine Power and Light Corporation (whose adjacent building we saw in the previous photo), this is the city's "first post-Hurricane Sandy resilient waterfront park". You can see some not terribly impressive photos of the place here.
This plaque in Corporal Thompson Park announces the presence of an artwork that's no longer here: Broadway Starship, a 1985 "playsculpture" dedicated to the children of West Brighton. The piece was created by Elizabeth Egbert, the former head of the Staten Island Museum, who passed away in the time since I took this photo.
Looking into the woods behind the track at the edge of Corporal Thompson Park, you can see a bunch of tombstones in the distance. They're part of an agglomeration of five old cemeteries — including a Native American burial ground — that were long abandoned before being cleaned up in recent years by an organization called Friends of Abandoned Cemeteries of Staten Island. (I later got a much closer look at some of the stones from a narrow little street that loops down from Richmond Terrace.)
Washing machines and nectarines under one roof. Take a look inside.