Best Hidden Neighborhood (2004)

Japhet Say the words "Fifth Ward" to most Houstonians, and they'll think crime, poverty and desperation. The neighborhood is infamous in song -- everyone from bluesmen like Juke Boy Bonner to rappers like the Geto Boys has made music about the Bloody Fifth and its perils. The tiny pocket called Japhet may be in the Fifth Ward, but it's not in that Fifth Ward. Train tracks, warehouses, junglelike vegetation and Japhet Creek hem in Japhet's four-square-block haven of ramshackle old wood-frame houses. It's more like a village than anything else -- fragrant organic gardens are everywhere, bursting with vegetables, fruits and flowers, and the whole neighborhood comes together for a big party every full moon.


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