Monday, August 22, 2011

New York, End of Summer

Here's something I love about New York. One day, on the familiar street that you walk down every other day to get to the farmer's market, this dress arrives on a fire escape. It's this perfect corally pinky red, and you can tell even from five floors down that it's a little too long to be practical for a normal night on the town, so you come up with a story in your head about the person who is airing it out in order to wear it to a party that night--it could just as easily be a jokey costume party as it could be a gala event--and you feel lucky that you were able to catch that moment when it hung outside on the fire escape, against the brown sooty bricks and the wrought iron. 

And then the following week, as you walk to the farmer's market, you look up wistfully to re-live that moment when you saw the perfect corally pinky red dress,'s still there. And you begin to realize, it just lives there now. Through last weekend's torrential rainstorm, through exhaust from traffic racing by below, the dress still hangs, and no one's bringing it in any time soon. Why, exactly? Who knows!

That is, literally, my way of describing the kind of things that happen in New York.
And not that we don't love us some New York, but Robb and I are going to take a little vacation. To Hawaii in fact! So far away. So completely different from our normal lives. Right? I just can't imagine I'll find any vintage dresses hanging against sooty brick buildings in Kona.

Last week, it dawned on us that when we return from our trip, it will pretty much be September. Which is, incidentally, pretty much fall. And with chagrin we realized we hadn't had a single picnic in the park all summer. So we made a big dinner and walked it over to the park with a bottle of bubbly. The old man neighbor who sits outside every single night during the summer made his compulsory joke--"Dinner for me? You shouldn't have!"--as we smiled and laughed and kept walking with salad bowl in hand. As we set up picnic, I took this photo of Robb, above, which is quite possibly the cutest photo of him I've ever seen in my life. 
And then he took this photo of me. (Nice one, I know.)
After I practiced my Ariel-from-Footloose impersonation ("Daddy hates it when I wear these boots"), we watched the sky get dark and the lights come on and we became amateur sociologists, watching the neighborhood children play.
See these two kids in the background in the photo above? They were playing with a little girl and each of them had a stick, and then they took the girl's stick away and told her to GO AWAY and she did this sort of sulky wandering/stomping by herself thing for awhile as the boys continued to stick fight--one with TWO sticks, the other with one--until they broke the extra stick. I swear to you, I hated those boys! So mean!!!
All at once, it seemed, the sky became tinged with purple and the branches slowly swayed.
And sometime while we were talking about what a cicada actually is--what do they look like? Are they big and fat like a grub? Or brittle like a grasshopper? And why are they making that noise??--it started to get dark.
And then, as we were laying back, pointing out stars as they appeared in the sky, it got really really dark. 

And then we went and got some ice cream.

And this, my friends, is what New York looks like at the end of summer. I hope your end-of-August is full of similar scrambles to soak it all in.

To find out what Hawaii looks like at the end of summer, you'll have to tune in next week. For now? Aloha!


  1. I will say one nice thing about the Bay Area weather: we haven't even started summer yet. Yeehaw!!

    (But it still makes me sad that I missed the entire NY summer.)

  2. congratulations. this post has officially given me my first, slight twinge of missing new york.