Sunday, June 26, 2005

does life get any better than this?

I love summer.

I should put that out there before I say anything more. Everyone else hates the sticky heat of summer, but me? I revel in it. Not only am I from the dirty, muggy South, but I was born in July, smack in the middle of the worst part of summer. I love wearing rolled-up jeans, going around in sandals and tank tops. I love feeling that feeling of baked heat on your arms (w/ lots of lavender smelling sunscreen of course! no skin cancer for me). I think I look best when my olive complexion is just that and not a wan afterthought in November.

Summer means music to me. When I was a kid, summer seemed to begin at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival. It marked the moment at which true heat emerged instead of acting as a tease in February and onward. Now, I live in Brooklyn and summertime means summer concerts. This week, I saw Dar Williams in Madison Square Park, could have seen Sleater-Kinney at Roseland (but decided $25 is maybe too much to spend to have my ears blown out by a band I've already seen twice... I'm getting old), saw the Dave Brubeck Quartet and the John Pizzarelli Quartet at Carnegie Hall last night as part of the JVC Jazz Festival and tonight I saw Stars and the New Pornographers in Prospect Park as part of Celebrate Brooklyn!

And celebrate Brooklyn indeed.

Yankee Doodle and I met up with one of my fellow New Orleanians exiled out in Park Slope and with our picnic supplies, we took off for 11th and Prospect Park West. We had bruschetta, havarti with dill, hummus, fresh strawberries, sunflower seeds, baguette and crackers and watermelon martinis in dixie cups. Friends staked out a place early on in the afternoon just beyond where the trees begin. It was an ideal location, far enough that we did not have to stomach the pain of the amplifiers and close enough to get a good look at the stage.

It was a great show even without Neko Case on vocals (she's off recording her new album... but fret not: she is still a member of the New Pornographers) and I even danced a bit with YD. But it's just so nice to sit out at night on a blanket in a park listening to music while curled up with your sweetheart. I have to say this may be the very best summer ever. A fabulous new job, a wonderful boyfriend, incredible friends who have become part of my family, a great room in Brooklyn, everyone I know is healthy and I'm old enough to not care that the married friends are beginning to outnumber the singletons among us. I am living out my dream of working with books and being paid to be well-read. I live in a city where most anything is possible. I think I'm finally in a place where I can safely admit that "that which does not kill you indeed makes you stronger." I'm just enjoying the benefits of working hard for a long time without much in the way of recognition or acknowledgement. Nothing anyone could say can make me feel guilty about reveling in this fact. I deserve this summer and I'm going to make the most of it.

I may not make it out to see Tegan and Sara tomorrow at Summerstage in Central Park, but I will definitely enjoy some iced coffee and reading outside in Prospect Park and dinner with K and RJ on the UES. I'm eager for work on Monday with the delicious expectation of a four day weekend on the horizon. Will I go to New Hampshire? Will I just stay in the city? Who knows, but this much is sure: it will be great.

4 Comments:

Blogger R J Keefe said...

How lucky Gotham is to have you.

Sun Jun 26, 09:13:00 AM  
Anonymous Mr. Doodle, M.Phil. said...

Please, "Yankie Doodle" is so informal.

Sun Jun 26, 05:11:00 PM  
Blogger Slimbolala said...

Summer is the best no matter how muggy and uncomfortable it gets. I love that blinding white light and the sweat (just accept it) and how the streets are all a little quieter but everone comes out in the evening. Nothing like it.

Tue Jun 28, 12:49:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

I completely agree. There is nothing like it. You have to offer yourself up to it, drink a lot of water and be nice to everyone on the street. Somehow everybody appreciates it that much more in the summertime.

Tue Jun 28, 06:03:00 PM  

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