Han-Yu Hung, Eric Sanderson, and their son Everett Sanderson visited The New York Botanical Garden (NYBG) on a wintry Saturday afternoon in February to record with StoryCorps. Co-Facilitator Carolina Correa and I were there because The Institute for Museum and Library Services awarded the NYBG three recording days when it won the prestigious 2010 IMLS National Medal.
Han works at the NYBG and the family frequently visits as members of the Children’s Gardening Program. Everett described exploring the garden’s woods with his friends, admiring the chipmunks, cardinals, and wildlife, all reveling in the pastoral respite from the Bronx’s cement cityscape. (more…)
When Elizabeth Vaynshteyn came to the United States, she didn’t speak any English, but she knew how important it was to learn. She began taking courses at the College of New Rochelle School of New Resources. And in 2006 she graduated with a greater understanding of English and the culture of the United States. However, she still had one more lesson to learn.
As Elizabeth remembers: “I had a course [called] urban community. My teacher greeted the class, “Good morning, fox.” (At least that’s what Elizabeth thought she was hearing.) Something about the teacher’s language confused Elizabeth so she went to the dictionary to look up the word ‘fox.’ This further confused Elizabeth. “I opened the dictionary” Elizabeth says, “and I saw that ‘fox’ was an animal. I didn’t believe that a teacher I respected would call us that.” Finally, Elizabeth asked another student why the professor greeted the students in this way, “Good morning, fox.” As Elizabeth remembers, “She took a piece of paper and wrote two words.” The word ‘fox’ was the first word and the word ‘folks’ was the second. “See?” the student said, “The word is ‘folks’ with an ‘L’.” Elizabeth’s teacher was saying, “Good morning, folks.” After the confusion was cleared, Elizabeth was able to enjoy her class once more.
Elizabeth’s story is one of several recorded at Bronx Council Towers located in Co-op City with the help of the Met Council. Also, a very big thank you to SAR high school students who did a great job of interviewing all the storytellers.