Archive for May 13, 2010

The neighborhood had changed over the years.

Decades ago it was an Italian neighborhood. Everybody knew everyone else. Neighbors knew each other and their families. A lady talked to me about the house at 39 Waverly ave. Her sister in law had once owned it and decades ago she had babysat in the house for family.

Today it was a neighborhood of absentee landlords. A mixed neighborhood of many different ethnic types. People pretty much kept to themselves. In the Elderly public housing the employees came and went never taking any note of the house next door. Nor did the tenants who lived in the 162 units inside. People came and went without a hello or even a nod to acknowledge the other.

It was much the same as it was in many neighborhoods all across the state and country. People remaining in their houses, children spending their time on the video games. It was not unusual, in fact even as it changed it remained just an average neighborhood.

Just another house

As for the house as 39 Waverly Ave; as time passed the people inside became less and less known till finally the various people living inside where not known

And so it went for years people came in and out of the house at 39 Waverly and over the course of time people noticed families no longer there, simply a moving van showing up on occasion and young men coming in and out.

Up to the very last day people took no notice at all while things of a secret nature took place. It was as one resident put it the perfect place to hide. Nobody noticed anything. At least almost nobody.

There was a woman living in the projects who had a son in government service, as she walked though the neighborhood she noticed things, little things that she saw in her son, things that nobody else noticed and she realized that soon the neighborhood would shortly become not just another part of town.

On Thursday morning they came out in the open, the agents, the choppers, the weapons. They poured into the house and 39 Waverly Ave to find both their target and information that would hopefully help them to honor their oaths to protect the people that they served.

And at that point, the people in the neighborhood, people all around the blocks who had not known or talked much to their neighbors came out. They watched the agents enter and leave the house over and over. They watched the local police control the traffic that poured by, they saw the media, the local networks, the national networks and even a plump blogger in a fedora descend upon them armed with microphone, camera and notebook. Some faces that they had seen on their television a thousand times, others they had never seen before in their lives.

They asked questions over and over again, they took reams of films, they set themselves up all over the neighborhood and struck their poses before their camera as the authorities continued their task.

More than all of this, the agents, and the reporters, the people came out and saw each other. They stood together and talked. They spoke of how they heard the choppers, they talked of the reporters that hung on their every word, and they talked of how the city and the neighborhood had changed in all the years they had been there.

They did all those things that neighbors do, all those things that were once done in a neighborhood where everybody knew everyone else. As the commotion died down and the press started to leave, it only remains to be seen if the unity and community created by their common experience would carry on beyond the Thursday when the War on Terror came to Waverly Street.

I interviewed several people on Waverly Ave about the raids:

The person I spoke to first was Marilyn

UPDATE: I know Marilyn was under the weather but whatever was troubling her seems to have affected the video, I’ll re-upload it asap.

Here is a quick pan of the neighborhood:

The most popular person in the neighborhood at least as far as the media was concerned was Barbara Lacerra who took video of the arrest of Mohammad Bakht Zameen

At one point the FBI headed for the Elderly public housing project next door

I went over to see what was going on but was turned away, supposedly they were having lunch. After all even FBI agents have to eat.

I took another pan of the reporters:

And then interviewed Bill

and then after a quick peek of Channel fives closing

found it was time to leave

Update: I haven’t seen any of the National coverage of this stuff but I called Stacy McCain with updates from Waverly ave. Check out his stuff.

Update 2: Stop the Raids!

going back and forth between their blogs concerning Kagan and the military issue.

Just back from Watertown putting up a few Quick photos:

Waverly Ave: A typical street in Watertown 5-13-10

Just another street in Watertown

Just another house on the street

Until the FBI arrived

FBI approaching the house at 39 Waverly Avg 5-13-10