During the years that I lived in New York City, I never went to the park. The reason for this was actually quite simple - I was just out of college, and I lived for the night- for dancing and clubs, swishy Upper Eastside parties and limo rides down West End Avenue, for smoky underground jazz clubs and rollicking Irish pubs. This was not so uncommon in Manhattan. That, and in the summer, if you can't afford an apartment with a/c, it's actually much less painful to live by vampire hours.
So it was an absolute revelation to me to discover, many years after moving away, the wonders and delights of Central Park. What an amazing place! What a national treasure! What foresight, what planning, what brilliant design!
Of course, it's really much better to have waited. I had my wild, misspent youth. And now I have a beloved family and a starry-eyed two-year-old with whom to experience all this wealth and luxury of beauty.
This, I am absolutely convinced, was the cutest couple in Manhattan. Are they not adorable? This was not a fleeting embrace. They were standing there in this posture, rapt with the beauty of the day and the world around them, for as long as I stood watching the lake. Is that not the sweetest thing?

But here's the other thing: wait 'til you see the cutest couple in the Hudson Valley!! Oh, ho-ho, do I have a treat for you. I also snapped a picture or two of them, and let me tell you....But I get ahead of myself. The cutest couple in the Hudson Valley is for another post!

To go off on a tangent, I've noticed that once one has experienced love - the real, generous, ever-expanding, painless variety that brings nothing but happiness and contentment, one is suddenly able to look at happy couples with the sort of appreciation that only comes with personal experience. The sight of happy couples brings me so much unfettered joy at this stage of my life. It just sends little tremors of sunshine through my veins.
As does the sight of duckweed on a lake.
Q admiring the candy bracelet that Daddy got her at FAO Schwarz.
She's not much of a sweets-eater, but when the occasion calls for it...


Evelyne said...

Q est adorable !!
c'est vrai que l'on redécouvre la fréquentation des parcs avec les enfants...Central park est un endroit fabuleux !!!

FDChief said...

My mind works in curious ways. Looking at these make me think of the film "LA Story", Steve Martin's valentine to the city and the woman that he then loved. When you love something - and someone - it gives you a very unique perspective, and you pictures reflect that.

Glad you had such a great trip.

nath said...

It's the same with me and Paris. Never been more in parks when I visit my folks there than since I've been a mum... Central park is such a nice mix of landscapes, there's fun at every corner

Anne said...

candy bracelet ! Mike has been voted collest dad in the US ;-)
I already told you I feel the same about Manhattan and Central Park. Only few trips to the UES before Muguet and now we live here !!! It's really a great gateway from the city and just around the block. The CP conservancy is doing an amazing job!

Anne said...

oups !
"Mike is the COOLEST dad..."

susanna said...

Central Park is one of the most beautiful parks I've ever visited. It's amazing to think that it is all man-made! It used to be a flat field with small rocks. I love the huge rocks that are there now...and with the's almost like every angle is a perfect painting or photograph. My twin sister was married in the park this past May.

Shaista said...

This is such a true and wonderful piece of writing - so romantic! I do love your summer dress and boots too - a perfect compliment to the green of the willow and the duckweed. Beautiful.

n said...

Woow, looks like you had a great trip in NYC! I really enjoyed the photos you posted. Were you there when heat wave hit NYC in August? It's nice and cool... The fall is here. ox