Friday, July 12, 2013

The good weather continues.

Welcome back. I hope your Friday is going well.

It's this sunny outside, and it has been since last week. Outrageous. 

Song of the day: Go Outside, Cults

Owen and Celia came by last Saturday for Brunch. It was the first 'full' day of absurdly nice weather, so we went for a walk around Burgess Park afterward. There were hundreds - if not thousands - of people out in the Park. Every BBQ pit was taken, people had tents set up, there were birthday parties happening, there were soccer games being played (O&C both couldn't believe people would actually be playing in 'this weather - too hot'), and lots of people were huddled around fishing poles at the 'lake' on the east end of the park.

Making power moves. 

The best way to welcome guests: a big plate of 'streaky' bacon.

I really do have a knack for capturing the most flattering candid shots. 

O&C refused to let me clean. Pretty awesome.

This man was harvesting cherries form one of the many cherry trees lining the park's walkway.

We decided to abandon the 'pavement' and walk through the tall grass.

The Shard from a distance.

We ambled around for over an hour.

This doesn't do justice to the amount of people that were in the park. Not by a long shot. 

Owen was surprised that there were real BBQ pits in the park. (Surprised that the council spent money on something people actually wanted to use)

And then we saw it. The ice cream truck. Nothing goes better with a post-brunch hot summer's stroll than a bit of ice cream.

I'm sure this man made a killing on Saturday. 

Power moves.

As we were walking back to the house, Celia noted that we'd "be seeing a lot of pink people walking around on Monday". She was right. Nearly everyone I saw this week was recovering from their first weekend spent in the sun in countless months. The skin tone of many folks in this city is analogous to that of a deep-sea fish [read: translucent]. I'm not sure any amount of sunscreen would've worked for some of London's population.

Sunday was much the same. I spent the evening in the house, reading, but was bombarded with the sounds of countless outdoor dinners, BBQs, and dance parties.

You can't quite tell, but there's 3 events across the street and a dinner in the garden below me.
Our little nook feels quite different now that people have begun moving into the building behind us. There are lots of children running around, playing, as well as new neighbors who've yet to learn that it's probably best to close their blinds in the evening. When we moved in, the sounds of construction were intrusive, but we got used to them. So much so that I'd forgotten the sound was even there - it was white noise. Then, after the construction was over, there was a period of time - before anyone moved in - wherein silence reigned. I got used to the silence. It made me feel like I was alone, that I could play my music at whatever volume I pleased (without anyone judging me for my taste). It was almost like we didn't even live in a city of 11 million. These days, however, I'm constantly reminded that there are people around. And I'm constantly regulating the volume of my music (probably a good thing).

I came home at 9pm on Monday night and walked straight to the windows to open them up (it's so hot that you've got to have the windows open if you don't want to sweat). As I did so, some new tenants on the ground floor of the new building were sitting in their living room, staring back at me. We shared a unique moment wherein we were staring at each other before we realized we were being stared at. Does that make sense? Like - I was looking at them, thinking, 'oh, I can see right into their living room', but immediately afterward, I thought, 'oh, they can see right into my living room!' We exchanged awkward waves. They closed their blinds.

Afterward, I thought it was probably better for me that they closed their blinds, because now I can keep mine open! The precedent has been set; I get privacy because they blinked first.

I had a friend by to watch this guy win Wimbledon. He was much more excited than I, naturally.
Let's take it back to the old school with a FaceTime break:

Kenz and Charlie about to celebrate July 4th (on the 5th)

Dixon and Monroe, cooking dinner

MOMA & Tom, bickering about Tom's ability to effectively summarize a story for MOMA.

Kenz in Pittsburgh

Jamie, Lucy, and Kikster eating breakfast. 

She's as messy as I am.

Kenz in NYC, trying to wake up.

Kenz surprising Josh with a lil FaceTime attack in Boston.
Yea, so, in the past week, Kenz and Annie have driven to Pittsburgh, NYC, New Haven, and Boston. They stayed with our friends, Josh and Courtney last night, and are driving to Providence today.

I'm green with envy that I wasn't there. 
I'm sure Kenz will post an update on her progress before long. For those of you who only visit on Fridays, be sure to continue reading after this post. McKenzie posted in the middle of last week about her trip thus far. It'll be directly below this one.

I recognize I'm stealing her thunder with this next picture, but I have to. Since it'd been raining in Knoxville, Kenz was trying to figure out good 'American' things to do with Annie that could be done indoors. I recommended Cold Creek Armory. They shot guns. It was the first time Annie had ever held a gun, much less shoot one. They took aim at zombie targets.

One afternoon this week, I was giving Kenz grief about waking up at 9am while she was in NYC. Thinking I was being funny, I laid it on a bit too thick [read: I was a butthole]. That afternoon, as I was explaining to Owen that I probably 'went too far', he suggested I go find "those vouchers" I made her for our second anniversary. I emailed one to her:

"It's best to eat crow warm."
By this point, I think it's clear that I live a pretty introverted life when Kenz isn't around. There aren't any sweeping London cityscapes, there are no cool pictures of some culturally-enriched activity - hell, there aren't even any pictures from outside my neighborhood. Don't get me wrong - I've felt obligated to get out into the city. I just haven't made myself do it! Maybe this weekend (unlikely). If you're in it for the cool pictures, then hurry up and wait for Kenz to return.

I did run into another fox on my walk home last night. 
Lastly, many of you may think the following picture is in poor taste. However, the purpose of this blog is to update friends and family on what life is like here in London. As a result, I've made an editorial decision to include it for the sake of transparency. One of Kenz's favorite activities is finding 'the trashy one' in a flock of pigeons. There's always one trashy one - ruffled feathers, missing talons, general unsightliness. Well, as I was walking at 5am this morning, I happened upon 'the trashy one'. He was getting his morning breakfast from a smattering of vomit left on the street from the night before. Ah, London...

I've saved the best news for last:

I don't have a picture yet, but I'm an uncle once again! Galileo Dale Sanders was born at 12:29am this morning. Congratulations, Lisa (and thanks, Sandy, for sending the good-news-email), and welcome to the family, little Leo! May you grow up with less hostility toward the Massachusetts snow than your mother.

That's it for this week. Thanks for reading. Have a good weekend and don't forget Kenz's post (below this one)!

P.S. And thank you, Pierce & Garnett, for showing me why the NBA is awesome.