Location: Central Park, Activity: People Watching
I appeared to be like any other: lounging on a light-weight blanket in the grasses of the Great Lawn in Central Park, wearing a purple bikini and brown sun hat casting a shadow over my eyes that gave me just enough coverage to people watch! If I didn’t consider this a worthy-of-my -time hobby, I wouldn’t be a writer.
Memorial Day weekend did not disappoint; the weather – 80 and sunny – had been the nicest since my arrival the week before. The lawn was sprinkled with every kind of every person you can imagine. Encircling me was a unique lot I had the privilege to observe as I sat there fully equipped to laze away the Saturday afternoon. In my over-size satchel, I had stowed a little pillow, notebook and pen, granola bar, i-pod, sunglasses, magazine and a water bottle that warmed to the temperature of the sun after five minutes on the lawn.
There were the volleyball players – tireless and in their own world, the constant smack of the ball to the palm became like an off-beat song to all of us laying there in the heat.
The frisbee circle formed within inches of my blanket. I didn’t mind the “oops” and “sorries” when they poorly tossed a frisbee at my leg, but I did mind when they broke out the football. I gave them a nervous smile and they moved the circle a few feet away from the sunbathers. They were the friendliest of park dwellers, so friendly they’d ask you to join their wayward toss and catch game if you walked by them.
The lunching hipsters wore bowler hats, fedoras and black wayfarers. Five of them shared a plate of vegan take-out, each with their own fork. They were very skinny.
My favorite – the minimalist – wore clothes she had run errands in earlier that morning, rolled up for max sun exposure. With her head resting on her purse and her body on the grass, no frills, her only ornamentation was a pair of sunglasses. This lady was just hell-bent on tanning.
Did I mention it’s Fleet Week in Manhattan? Though there weren’t many likely due to the heat, every now and then a couple of bright white uniforms would saunter past me. God bless the navy!
Wearing mitts and backward Yankees caps, a few casual friends tossed a baseball around.I tried to hide my animosities. As often as I badmouth the Yankees in Houston, I forget wear I am now. It isn’t kosher to refer to them as the Skankees when you’re living in their hometown.
The yuppie blonde couple canoodled with restraint, patting each other on the knee every now and then. He was getting a farmer’s tan in chinos and she was chatting about the wine from the party last night, apparently she didn’t like it.
Three funky friends wearing tie die, head scarves and neon were openly outraged by the smokers near the fence on the other side of the park.
A father and son kite team melted my heart. They were barefoot, side by side, wearing matching green polos and their heads never once turned away from the sky.
I spied a photographer capturing in photos what I’m describing in this post. I never saw her face, she had a beautiful black camera for a head every time I craned back to see what she was doing. We had similar motivations for the afternoon. I wish I had some of her photos to show all of you, it really was a striking scene.
Lastly, two french lovers were making the yuppie couple blush. Unaware, they embraced with a kind of passion prying eyes couldn’t break apart. They loudly whispered and rolled around – they were making quite a scene – but I didn’t care, just as long as they didn’t roll onto my blanket.
All in a lazy day’s work.
Tomorrow is the first day of my internship! Wish me bonne chance and I am on my way…