About a month ago, Dan and I took a walk through Carl Schurz Park in our neighborhood and while talking about how much we liked the area, we mused about the possibility of inviting Dan's poker friends there for a picnic.
I loved the idea. After all, we would get the (rare) chance to be outside all day, and I would have the opportunity to entertain. (I am a strange person because I am not a fan of parties but I love to entertain. I think I get it from my mom. I like to feed people.)
Dan wasn't so convinced. "No one will come all the way to the East River," Dan said, "It's so out of the way. There needs to be a reason to have a picnic here."
It was out of way for everyone, but I completely disagreed. First of all, Dan's poker buddies are always up for doing something new. Second, spending quality time with friends and free food was a powerful motivator. Even though we never came up with a good reason, I made it my mission to make it happen. We would have this picnic for the sake of having a picnic.
My strategy was simple: I told Kayleen and Kim, the girls in the group, that Dan and I were thinking of having a picnic on the East River. They thought the idea was brilliant. (Of course they did!) We settled on a date, and the next thing I knew, Kayleen was talking about the picnic to the group on poker night, everyone got excited, Dan realized that people were into it and sent out an email invite, and it happened just like that! Go Yvonne!
On a perfect summer day, we laid down our blankets under a tree in Carl Schurz Park and sprawled our bodies in the grass for five hours while eating and drinking ourselves silly. The menu was simple: sandwiches of three varieties: turkey, roast beef, and mozzarella, tomato and basil; fruit salad; chips; peanut butter chunk cookies; Kayleen brought brownies; Matthew brought more fruit; and then a slew of mystery drinks--innocent looking flavored lemonades spiked with vodka.
Here's our crew:
Matthew, Kayleen, birthday boy Julien (see, there was a reason for a party!) and me.
Kim, Nien and Matthew again.
Nien brought some games/sporting equipment to entertain us. Nien is funny because he has an endless supply of toys and gadgets. (The other week when we visited his apartment, he showed us his remote control flying helicopter). He brought two of his kites (he left the others at home) and we flew them on along the East River.
Nien was able to get the "low wind" kite up in no time.
Once the kite was under control, Nien gave Dan the reins and tried his hand at the "high wind" flying kite.
It was fun to watch Nien work his mad kite flying skills.
The second kite proved to be more a challenge.
But eventually, it got its way up there. So much fun!