April 26, 2010

The Friends and Family Plan

The past few weekends have been jam packed with fun and loved ones. First, my Aunt Anne and Uncle Leon came out from Minnesota to celebrate her birthday. He’d been here once before, for my law school graduation, but it was her first time coming to the Big Apple.

They’re both fun and relaxed people and they had done a fair amount of preparatory investigation before they arrived, had some ideas about what they wanted to do, so I didn’t have to do a ton of planning for their visit. Still, I wanted them to have a good time, so I stressed out, making back-up and double-back up contingency plans for everything we did. I wanted to be helpful, but not bossy; open, but not aimless; available, but not smothering. In short, I wanted everything to be perfect, which it pretty much was.

They saw a lot (including John Waters), and did a lot (including ice skating at Rock Center on an 80 degree evening), visited Jacques Torres (see below) and we had a bunch of fun, so yay! And I found it really touching that they would make the effort to come out here and spend time with me.

After Anne and Leon flew home to the Land of 10,000 Lakes, I laid super low for a few days, resting in anticipation of the arrival of my friend Rochelle.

We've been friends since 1986, but hadn't seen each other in five years. I knew her visit would be easy, though.  I practically lived at her house our sophmore year of high school, and became quite close with her parents.  We made our first college visit together, and she came to Minnesota for my college graduation.  Her dad was responsible for my fall from the wagon of vegetarianism (how could I say no to that gorgeous hamburger  topped with with Tillamook Cheddar?).  It wouldn’t be inaccurate to say that we were like family.

As expected, she was an easy and delightful houseguest who was happy to do whatever, which was great.  We went for a run in Prospect Park, ate soup dumplings at Joe's Shanghai and I got to pop in to the newly relocated and revamped Purl Soho store.

The new space combines their yarn and fabric stores under one roof, and is much bigger than the old space.  It's light and white and lovely.  Although she's not a knitter, Rochelle found the fibers and fabrics (she gravitated towards some beautiful Liberty of London prints) enchanting.

So did I.

I wasn't the only New Yorker who was excited to see Roach.  She and Megan go back even farther than she and I do, and played soccer together for years.  The three three of us spent a lovely, if chilly, afternoon together, first touring the Highline (twice in two weeks for me) with my godson, Bruno,

and then supping and drinking vino with my little friend, Margaret. 

The next day I made scones and we embarked on an ambitious walking tour of inner Brooklyn. I'd never realized how many churches and public schools are in my and the surrounding neighborhoods until Rochelle pointed it out.  It is kind of weird.  I mean, I know that we're population dense, but it almost seems as though I live in the middle of some sort of educational and religious breeding ground.  The walk ended at Nicky's Vietnamese Sandwichs, where we enjoyed spicy Bahn Mi with Sricha before scurrying back to mine to indulge in a little Jeni's Spledid Gravel Road Ice Cream. A sweet and salty end to a wonderful couple of weeks.


craftivore said... Best Blogger Tips

What a fantabulous time! You're so good at documenting all of it, I always forget to take pics.

littlebirdbigcity said... Best Blogger Tips

Yay for visiters! The new Purl looks great!

Erin Joy and Sarah Jane said... Best Blogger Tips

Good times. Good times.

Oiyi said... Best Blogger Tips

You are a great hostess! Looks and sounds like you had a wonderful time with your visitors.

Sayschnicklefritz said... Best Blogger Tips

Craftivore: I try to be sure to juice up the camera when folks come, as it gives me an excuse to take snaps without feeling like a boob.

Littlebird: You know how I loves me some visitors! They didn't get homemade ice cream, though.

ErinJoy & Oiyi: Yep, totally good times. It's easy to hostess for the ones you love.