pastimes

Montrose Avenue Beach

Montrose Avenue Beach

Celia loves going to the everyman beach between Montrose and Foster.  This is where the landscape opens up and buildings recede, taking a back seat to the expansive beauty of the lake and sky.

Thousands of people flocked to the beach and surrounding park yesterday to fish, picnic, sun, play beach volleyball, test the waters; meet up with friends.  Devotees come with plenty of baggage: tents, cardboard boxes laden with food, massive coolers that only the most strapping men can lift.

Ladies following the Islamic code lay on the ground with their husbands, eyes wary, covered with cloth from head to toe.  Not so many yards off, nonchalant teen girls did their best to imitate Kerri Walsh, in skimpy bikinis whacking the volleyball.

Silverwood Farm

Silverwood Farm

Last weekend, a friend invited us up to a horse farm in Wisconsin to see a dressage competition.  It was quite a drive–Chicago weekend traffic can be murder–but the weather was gorgeous (though still cold).  The landscape, decked out in the delicate finery of spring, was lovely to behold.

groupiesI had never attended such an event.  I was surprised at the tranquility of the scene.  Seeing the horses and their riders, and walking the quiet paths whose fences bounded the long allées, made me wistful for the days before the automobile.  My thoughts traveled back in time to the Impressionists Degas and Manet, who were fond of painting horses and racing scenes.  It was great fun to be transported back imaginatively into that vanished world.

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