Thursday, June 27, 2013

Playing Catch Up

This past weekend Jon and I had the great pleasure of spending the entire afternoon and evening in Prospect Park for this year's Tropfest, the largest short film festivals in the world. Admission was free and included music from Chairlift, Bear in Heaven, Ghost Beach and Neon Indian. There were tons of food carts at the edge of the green and we ate our dinner while watching the selected shorts. Submissions came in from all over the world and had to follow only two rules. They could be no more than seven minutes long and also had to incorporate "bridge" somewhere in the film. 
Earlier in the week I met up with some girlfriends at Rockefeller Park and saw Laurie Anderson perform as part of the River to River Festival. From June 15th to July 14th numerous dance, spoken work and music performance are held all over lower Manhattan. All events are free to the public. You can go here for a full schedule of events. 

I never in my life thought I would see Laurie Anderson perform live so this was a dream come true. She's in her sixties but her performance was strong and the commentary she presents in her songs still holds true to what is going on today in our world.

The picnic blankets have officially been broken in for the summer season. There are really few things that I enjoy more than lounging with friends, eating random snacks and discreetly drinking from a bottle of wine stowed away in someone's tote bag while enjoying a stellar performance in the glow of a perfect sunset. 

Sunday, June 16, 2013

What I Saw: The Jazz Age Lawn Party

Every year, Michael Arnella and the Dreamland Orchestra host the Jazz Age Lawn Party. Hoards of New Yorkers flock to Governors Island dressed to the nines in vintage fashions to dance, picnic and experience one of my favorite annual parties. The place is completely transformed. When Jon and I had gone in previous years the weather was unbearably hot. This year we were blessed with perfect weather and a cool breeze that would sweep across the great lawn throughout the day.
The place is absolutely transformed. Everywhere you look people are fully outfitted in period dress. That's part of the fun! 
Also, Bill Cunningham was out snapping away and smiling all afternoon. It totally made my day to see this legend in person.
We made sure to buy our tickets early. The event is very popular and can easily sell out. We also made sure to catch the first ferry out in the morning to Governors Island. There are three options for you to choose from. You can take a free ferry from Brooklyn Bridge Park or in Midtown or you can pay to ride the East River Ferry. Make sure to get to the party as early as possible in order to stake out a prime spot. We were among the first group to arrive and found a great spot right by the pie contest table and under a great deal of shade. Speaking of which, it would be helpful to bring a parasol or a large sun hat because there is very limited shade on the lawn. We also brought some snacks and drinks with us as you can picnic on the lawn. However, there are drink and food vendors on site as well. The cocktails and food are delicious but make sure to bring cash because they don't take credit cards.

If you missed the party in June, not to worry. Another one is set to be held in August. It's definitely an experience that is not to be missed. I'm already looking forward to next year's.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Week 24

We spent Saturday afternoon on Governors Island again, this time for the Jazz Age Lawn Party. We took the first ferry out and spent hours in the midst of an idyllic scene straight out of the Great Gatsby. We forgot to take a photo on the island so we snapped a quick one after the ferry ride home.

Jon and I are taking a portrait a week for a year. You can view our entire set of portraits here. 

Friday, June 14, 2013

These Days

Time has been on my mind a lot lately. I was looking at my calendar and had a second of shock when I the realization of "Oh, it's mid-June" came to me.

The coming months are scheduled full of events and I have already marked down events for October and November. Doesn't that seem a little crazy to you? It feels like the days are slipping by. I think at this particular time in my life the level of anxiety surrounding the future is higher than normal. Part of it is because it feels like there's so much more at stake. It's not just me any more. It's my little family of two - three if you count the cat. And to a certain extent, if we decide to do so, our larger future family. I think the other part of it has to do with the distinct feeling of getting older, maybe thanks to finding some stark white hairs sprouting from my right temple this morning as well as talking to Jon about my upcoming 34th birthday.

But it's OK. It really is OK. I told myself that there's no point in asking the questions that have no immediate answers because that kind of future thinking can make you crazy. Instead, I am making a promise to myself to savor each minute of this summer, to really expand into and luxuriate in the time Jon and I have this first year as a married couple. There are no kids to think about, no big responsibilities that keep us from doing anything we want to do. I am understanding more and more that we shouldn't take that lightly and should take full advantage of this time.

Thinking in this way makes me want to go travel the world for a year before coming back to "real life". Do people who have traveled long-term ever get back to their pre-travel life? I wonder if I can convince Jon...

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Week 23

We took a minute to take this week's photo at Brooklyn Bridge Park. We biked from our neighborhood and got a little turned around. Every time I've tried to bike to the Brooklyn Bridge I end up riding on a cobblestone street which is never, ever enjoyable. I have to figure out a better route for us. The trip home was a lot easier thanks to the East River Ferry. It drops us off right in our neighborhood.
Jon and I are taking a portrait a week for a year. You can view our entire set of portraits here.

What I Saw: Governors Island & Figment NYC


Every year Governors Island hosts Figment NYC, a large scale interactive art festival. We decided to make an afternoon of it.

We biked to Brooklyn Bridge Park to meet up with a friend and from there hopped on the free ferry to Governors Island. This ferry runs on the weekends from Pier 6. It's normally pretty crowded but hey, it's a free ride. 

Once we arrived there was a lot to see and do. I loved "Head In The Clouds", an entire structure made from plastic bottles.
The outer structure was constructed from gallon milk jugs and the interior was covered with plastic water bottles that held a small amount of blue water. It was beautiful and the perfect place to eat the first Mister Softee cone of the summer.
There was free putt-putt and a lot of large scale installations all around the island. This is a very family friendly event and it also seems to attract a lot of the neo-hippie Burning Man crowd. Made for a lot of good people watching.

We ended up taking the East River Ferry back home. It's still one of my favorite things to do in New York. The sunset never disappoints.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Week 22

It's a super hot day in Brooklyn so we finally turned the AC on. We took a little rest as the apartment cooled down and talked about Jon's new nephew who was born just last night. We talked about the wedding that we'll be attending this evening and what we have to remember to bring to help set up. We talked about what kind of workout we were going to do this afternoon. It is always nice to have a quiet moment together before embarking on a busy day.

Also, this face will never fail to make me laugh. Love this guy.
Jon and I are taking a portrait a week for a year. You can view our entire set of portraits here.

Time Warp: Cibo Matto

Jon had the foresight to buy tickets to see Cibo Matto two months ago. The show sold out quickly so we knew the house would be packed. We made sure to get there early and close to the stage. I'm so glad that we staked out a spot right up front. I never thought I would see Cibo Matto play live. The show was amazing. The energy from the crowd was great, Miho Hatori's stage banter was charming and the performance was SO GOOD.

Anna from Door Sixteen has a great post with tips for concert going in New York. Everything she says is spot on. Basically, buy your tickets early because that show you really want to go to will inevitably sell out. Get to the venue early and when you find a good place to watch the show, be prepared to stay in that spot all night because as soon as you move someone else will gladly take your place.

Good things to remember. Now go forth and see some mind blowing music.