Introducing The Franconian, produced by HarlemLIVE.
Where did we get the name? Franconia, a place in Germany, is etched in stone over the doorway. It is currently hidden by scaffolding. We made it a noun by adding an ’n’. However, we’re open to a name change based on feedback. Many of the area’s pre-war buildings have names. Take a look.
Creative Kids of HarlemLIVEbegan with the help of a former school teacher and youth living in our building, 19 – 25 St Nicholas
This is a trial run of our newsletter. We’re welcoming anyone to contribute to this occasional publication produced by the building’s youth.
Feel free to suggest or offer any stories. recipes, poems, artwork, adventures, for future issues.
Suggestions can be directed to Djeneba Ballo of the 5th Floor or Abdoulaye and Muhammed Diop of the 3rd floor.
Editor: Djeneba Ballo
Contributors: Abdoulaye and Muhammed Diop and Mamady, Mawa, and Aboulaye Ballo.
In spring 2013, an outgoing tenant abandoned a female kitten to the basement. For many weeks, it hid in the shadows. Then she timidly befriended the super and other tenants. Not long after that, a large grey alley cat made friends with her, too, and by summer’s end, she was a very young mother.
After successfully nursing three females and one male for two months with the help of the super and tenants, the mother was taken to get her shots and spayed.
Attention was given to make sure the kittens were people friendly. The super’s daughter and a former tenant each adopted one of the females, while the other two found homes with the help of a posting on the website, Craigslist.
The proud mother cat now patrols her territory, greeting those doing laundry and doing her part in keeping mice away. The occurrence of mice dropped dramatically once she took up residence downstairs 2 ½ years ago.
Feel free to say hi. She’s very friendly. She was never given a name. Try “Here Kitty, Kitty.”
2015 – A change in the building’s management over a year ago brought about several developments. Scaffolding was put up last fall. Many apartments changed hands. The halls went from white and green to shades of brown and beige around Labor Day. What looks like a fancy coffee shop in the corner store front, is actually a real estate broker. The hair salon is gone.
by Djeneba and Mamady Ballo
This summer, we went with our mother and older sister, Mawa, to the west African country, Cote D’Ivoire. Our parents were born and raised there.
On our way to Cote D‘Ivoire , we were so nervous. I, Djeneba hadn’t been there for 13 years. I kept asking myself if my relatives would remember me and if they would like me.
Once we got there it was a total shock, We were expecting there to be no supermarkets, that we’d be staying in an apartment, and to only have outdoor showers. Instead we stayed in a beautiful house that had a shower, supermarkets, and much more.
What really shocked us was the cultural differences and how, wherever we went, people treated us like we always lived there. Even if they did not know you, they were willing to help you.
We learned a lot about the government and the school systems.
This trip was fun. We got to know more about our family, and met some we never knew. The Ivory Coast is a very special place to us. The stereotype that all the people are poor is not true.
Overall we had an amazing time learning and understanding the world better.