Sunday, March 15, 2009

Love is in the Air

I think I've said before that this is one of my favorite spots in Amsterdam. If I haven't said it before, I'm saying it now. These crocuses come up every year spontaneously for the sole purpose of telling me that spring is right around the corner - I think. I know I keep saying that it's almost here. I also keep walking out of the house every day wearing a hat, a scarf and mis-matched gloves - and needing all of that. But it really does feel different. It's a less-bitter cold. And sometimes I even ride on the bike without my hat or gloves - for a few minutes. If I ever threaten to move any farther North, someone please stop me. I've done it twice. This is far enough.

Last Thursday was a beautiful day and this spot was (forgive me for this) absolutely glorious. It was still nice today. I figured I should get out there before these fragile little flowers fall apart and go away. Waiting for the next beautiful day when I don't have to work is not a good plan. I took tons of pictures when I was there today. A gay guy taking pictures of flowers. What will they think of next? I love flowers that come up like this. I believe we call them...perennials?

We went to a party last night. My friend, Cindy, turned 50, which sort of surprised me. I've been to a fair number of birthday parties in the last five years. They are usually very Dutch or they have a heavy Dutch influence. Of course that's fine, and expected given where we live. Cindy's party had a completely different feel. I was standing and talking to Fred and my friend, Ann, when I looked around the apartment and thought, This is a total New York City party.

First of all, their apartment (at least the floor we were on) is sort of shaped like a certain type of NYC apartment. Think railroad. Two longish rooms, windows out the front, windows out the back with a little balcony. It was filled with people, all standing holding a glass and talking. There was a table with some pretty fabulous hors doeuvres (unlike anything I ever saw in NYC), and there was music playing. The room was pretty loud, but we managed to stay for much longer than I thought we would - after a respite in the kitchen to get my hearing back.

I went in for the group gift, which was a leather bag that Cindy had picked out in Barcelona. Ann didn't and said she wished she had. (But she had an idea for something else.) Another woman I talked to scoffed and said, "I don't do group gifts. I got her an Armani bangle."

"What's a bangle?" I asked.

She was sort of drunk and was making me dance at that point. She shrugged and said, "A black plastic thing." We all need more of those, as long as it's Armani. Two words - gift receipt. Actually, I Googled Armani bangle and came up with this. Not bad. It's sort of understated and classy - just like Cindy.

I need to go to more parties like that one. It was a completely different crowd: very ex-pat heavy. Of course I didn't talk to that many people, but it was an interesting crowd to be in. And this was the first time for Cindy to meet Fred and for Ann to really talk to Fred. He was a hit. It's nice to know that I married a guy who's good at a party. It's not a reason to marry a guy, but it's a nice side benefit.

1 comment:

Grace said...

the crocuses are just beautiful!! Thanks for sharing
in grey dark NJ wishing for flowers,Grace