A few months back, Nate told me about a strange little neighborhood he'd discovered out near Howard Beach. He said it was ten feet below the surrounding streets, and that the people who lived there called it "The Hole." They said it had been a dumping ground for the mob years before, and that there were still bodies buried in the empty lots. The day we went out for a visit it had been raining, and the entire area was flooded. Puddles were three feet deep in the middle of every street. We walked around for awhile, talked to a sausage vendor who knew the history of the area, and then wandered over to the Black Cowboy farm down the road. On the way back to the train, we passed this massive rail yard, which, together with the projects behind it and Linden and Conduit Avenues, cuts the Hole off from the rest of New York.