Poland in the middle of Brooklyn

IELI people and places

April 18, 2014

Text and Photos with captions by Beata and Ale

Last Friday we had a chance to see Greenpoint in New York City. It is the northernmost neighborhood in New York. The area is a part of Brooklyn. The place is called Little Poland. A lot of Polish immigrants live there. Also, it is a part of the Polish-American community.

We organized a trip and we were able to enjoy a nice long walk around the place. We could see many Polish advertisements, Polish words and stores around us.

The nicest time we spent in the Polish Restaurant Karczma . The place has an old Polish style. The food is really delicious and has a traditional, home-made taste. The typical Polish dish includes a lot of herbs and is heavy.

We tried Pierogi  (They are a kind of Polish dumpling   – first boiled, then they are baked or fried usually in butter with onions – traditionally stuffed with potato filling , sauerkraut, ground meat, cheese, or fruit). Definitely, we prefer the option with cheese and potato filing. It tasted the best when we ate this with sour cream.

We ate also white polish sausage, it was served together with  white horseradish sauce.  This kind of sausage is really good. It is a special dry sausage, boiled and served as an appetizer. Especially, it is one of the main dishes during Easter time.


1st Train (6 train) 2 to go.


Michele: “Get in the train” hahahaha or something like that. Her face says it all.


On the way to the second leg of the trip.


Delayed, ultra delayed E train. Laughing and chatting.


And more time at 54th and Lex. Still waiting for the train.


The last one… Almost there.


Almost there G train… Already in Brooklyn.


Yey!!! We finally arrived… Greenpoint here we go.




Polish building… Lovely architecture.


And here… Fiore!


The Class


Eastern time… Colorful eggs, flowers and funny rabbits.


YES!! Finally spring is joining us little by little.


Food time…



Polish bakery. I want polish doughnuts! What would you like?




Hungry people need extra attention! Especially if it is a group of more than 16 people.




The utensils say it all! hahaha

Ale and Beata…















Hi everyone! We are Beata & Alejandra. We are studying at the IELI program at Hunter College. Today, we are going to tell you a few words about it how much we love New York City, why we decided to improve our English at Hunter College- the eldest University in NYC ( not everyone knows it;) and what we like the most about Hunter.

We prepared a short interview. I hope you will enjoy it!!!

P.S. Please, pay your attention for every single word about our lovely school.

Comparing Commutes


Comparing Commutes

BY Sang mun

I live in Jersey City right now so every time I go to school, I always take the Path and then transfer to the subway. Because my classes begin early, I always hurry to take them. However at that time so many people are also going to school, working, and doing something. In order to take the train quickly, most of them push me up or out. There is no excuse for this. In the morning my feeling is usually kind of terrible and sometimes I am not on time to class. I can understand them a little. Because Manhattan is a big city, but there are two things I cannot understand that much. The first thing is that the subway is usually not on time sometimes and because of track problems the subway stops on the way often. Also while it is raining and snowing, water is leaking onto platform or seat moreover some foolish peoples lay down on the seats and throw garbage on the rails or platform. That sort of sucks. I think that the MTA never gives convenient transportation as it should.

In my opinion, for example, in Korea also every weekday lots of people crowd on every platform. However there is a yellow line to line up in regular sequence so taking the subway is so much better than in New York city. Although there are a lot of people on the platform, we can take the train easily. Above all cleaning is very important to use subway due to the fact that subway is public transportation which everybody has to use. In case of Korea, Government provides cleaning system, so every station has several cleaners who can clean each scheduled time. It makes our feeling much better.

In New York City, it smells like horrible and the platform is also damaged, the wall leaks , and the speaker do not work well. I would like to complain to the MTA about developing the subway system. I do not know why every year the fare increases, however the facilities have never developed for three years.

Here are two of my suggestions to develop the MTA service a little more.  First of all, one thing is to make the yellow line on every platform of stations   like in Korea. If so taking the subway is definitely going to be easier than before. Making yellow line is obviously not difficult. The MTA is the only organization which can make and decide it. The second thing I thought is that if cleaning is hard in every station, we have to clean on our own so the MTA could put cameras in each station to monitor and then if somebody throws some garbage on the ground or scribbles on the facilities, they can impose a fine at once.

3  imagesCAL2MVGN 4dd

An outstanding activity in New York City


New York City is one of the most dramatic and passionate cities in the world.  It has numerous places that are exciting not only for tourists but also residents.  For example, Times Square, Broadway theaters, Central Park, enormous museums, are just a few of the attractions.  This sparkling, gigantic city has never stopped fascinating people from all over the world. There are a large number of amusements and attractions that are affordable in the city so you can find your own favorite activity from hundreds of options.  Many of us, especially students and backpackers seek to do things that are exciting but less expensive.  There are many activities to do in the city with less money or without paying.  Wandering through the streets in Manhattan is one of the wonderful free activities because you encounter many interesting things.  For instance, going to Central Park is a marvelous. Meanwhile, you would come across a bunch of entertainments, such as street musicians, dancers, magicians, and so on. Different types of neighborhoods are located next to each other so you can see the true melting pot that is New York.  Many things stimulate me, but taking the Staten Island Ferry is one of the most thrilling experiences I have ever had.

Staten Island, one of the five boroughs of the city of New York, is not a place where tourists usually go.  People living outside of the New York metropolitan area may think New York is just Manhattan because when New York City is presented through TV or other kinds of media, Manhattan always stands out as if it were the only area of the city.  Actually, Staten Island has less loadstones comparing to other boroughs.  Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden in which the Chinese Garden located is one of the major places attracting visitors in the borough.  Many old-style little local shops have still existed in the island as though the place surely is a rural area, not developing enough.  Thus, people, especially tourists, may not know about Staten Island.


Even though Staten Island may not be the place where travelers usually visit, it has one of the most startling attractions within the city connecting the two islands between Manhattan and Staten Island.  Staten Islanders usually use the Staten Island Ferry to commute to Manhattan.  However, the ferry is more than simply public transportation.  It passes by the Statue of Liberty representing freedom for all.  Talking the ferry going to Liberty Island and Elis Island from Battery Park costs approximately $20 that is a lot just to see the statue frequently.  There is no charge to take the ferry and enjoy the 50-minute voyage back and forth between the two islands.  Furthermore, while the ferry crosses the Upper Bay you can also see the Manhattan skyline, Brooklyn Bridge, and the warehouses of Brooklyn, as well as Jersey City in New Jersey.  The best time to take the ferry is toward sunset.  The statue gets backlit from the sun and looks like a shining diamond.


If you have never taken the State Island Ferry you ought to.  I think you will find it a wonderful experience.  If you want to know about Staten Island, follow the website below.

Visit Staten Island


Staten Island (Neighborhood Highlights)


The Staten Island Ferry



Kohsuke Uchino

Learning Tennis in NY






Sangmun yun


Hi everyone How are you today?

My name is SANG MUN from Korea and I have studied at Hunter college for two years.

While I am living in New York city, the one thing I’ve felt is that there are a lot of famous sports we can enjoy such as basketball, hockey, and football, tennis and so on. Above all I would like to recommend that you guys learn to play tennis. There are some reasons why I would prefer and recommend playing tennis. First of all, we do not play alone when we play tennis because playing tennis is kind of a social sport.




The Secret Garden


There is no introduction for this place, but what I can tell  that is breathtaking. A great children’s classic,  taken into a movie in 1993. The Secret Garden is one of the most amazing places in New York City. Part of Central Park, located in the section named “The Conservatory Garden,” this fountain is a tribute  to Frances Hodgson Burnett, the author of the children’s book “The Secret Garden,” this fountain represents Mary and Dickon, the main characters in the book.


This garden is perfect for everyone, and is perfect to be visited in spring or summer, yet winter is a special moment to visit this garden, It makes it more magical that it is already. In summer, it is perfect not just for everyone, but especially for kids. This fountain in summer is full of tulips in a variety of colors, and surrounded  by trees surrounding the fountain. making it a great place for spending the day with friends and family. In winter, this garden will be full of snow, which makes it more magical than summer.

Pamela Silva

More about graffiti.


I’m Martina and this is my second semester as an IELI student at Hunter college.

I found my self happy and nostalgic when I read the article in the international voices about graffiti and Bansky.

I come from a beautiful Italian island called Sardinia whose culture is very old, in fact, you can look back 1000 years before the year 0 to find ancient forms of civilization with a democratic structure and consequently music and art.

In the 1960s in a small town located in the center of the island named Orgosolo a man from Siena decided to move there to teach the art of murales (graffiti). His name was Francesco del Casino and he inspired many other artists to express  different feelings such as anger or pure celebration. Francesco was the first who had the intention of teaching graffiti but wasn’t the first to do one: the very first mural in Orgosolo was painted by a group of anarchists in 1969.


Graffiti in this little town was born as a chance to be heard, by
politically motivated people who found themselves to be “artists.” Today they’d be considered street artists; back then they really weren’t coming from any particular professional background.
The one thing these images have in common is their purpose: social communication.

Back on the late 60s society was changing fast.
You see, there are many similarities with NY if you put the history of graffiti next to this one. The people over there were coming from a century of submission to “banditism”(organized groups of bloodthirsty gangsters in Sardinia), the town was famous for the consistent amount of murders that were constantly committed there rather than any cultural aspect.
But then something else came up and everyone started to breath the air of a revolution that was already going on in the Italian peninsula. The working class discovered the power of protest and they started to raise their voices, protecting their rights from any form of abuse. The same resistance they had to crime was the transferred to other forms of submissions.
Universities were the first to share a subversive response to the problems and they quickly spread it to every other institution to finally reach even the poorest shepherd.
That is exactly how the first mural was painted.


There are many famous ones like the one that depicts Gramsci with Lenin, Marx and Engels with a very strong message to defend the people from the selfish capitalists