Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Summer Lovin at Central Park

Weeks ago I posted about how I need to get out, do the touristy thing and actually explore more. I've decided to refer to it as the "Summer Lovin" series. I got lucky earlier this month and stumbled across some long sought after places in Central Park. Given that the Monday forecast called for a high of 88. Since I hate wasting gorgeous days sitting indoors I decided to take full advantage.

I went to work and immediately sent out my memo informing my department that I'd be taking a half day. (I love that we don't have to give reasons. We just take our days as we need/want them). My plan was to leave work at 1 and go home and lay out on my roof. Then I thought what's the fun in that? Instead, I walked the 8 blocks up to Columbus Circle and went to Pinkberry as requested by Thoughtsy. Since I adore frozen yogurt this was an easy request to fulfill. The floor was very cool. It was entirely made of stone. The type you might see around a fountain sculpture.

My other favorite afternoon delight
From there, it was on to Central Park. I feel like I spend all my time in the same section of the park, but this time I was determined to take pictures, be touristy and artistic and find new places on my list. 

And I did.
Elephants at Columbus Circle

Wisteria in front of the Chess & Checkers House

Beginning of The Mall Literary Walk
The Mall
Naumburg Bandshell

Wisteria Pergola
If you'd never smelled wisteria, do so. The scent is absolutely intoxicating. These trees can be found throughout the park but when you find them in this type of setting you feel drawn to the benches beneath. It's insanely peaceful.  A short walk will take you to the steps leading to Bethesda Terrace.

Bethesda Terrace
As soon as you step into the shelter of the terrace you immediately feel the coolness that only being surrounded by stone can give. The terrace gracefully shows her age with the cracked and peeling murals lining the walls. The murals show the marble and granite designs that never came to be. Look up and the view is much different. The ceiling is made with more than 15,000 encaustic Minton tiles and was installed in 1869. What makes the ceiling so special is that Bethesda Terrace is the only place in the world where Minton ceramic tiles are used for a ceiling.

I adore this ceiling

Angel of the Waters a/k/a Bethesda Fountain

Loeb Boathouse
While leaving the Boathouse area and heading into The Ramble I stopped to get my #PhotoADayApril picture. The day’s prompt was flowers. There was a pretty planting of red and yellow tulips outside the gates. This is where my afternoon took an unexpected turn. A gentleman stopped me and asked if I was a photographer. I instinctively said no and that I simply liked to take pictures. He asked what photographer doesn’t like to take pictures. He had a point. I may not have a top of the line camera; I may not have studied the art; I may have only been using my iPhone for the day, but I am a photographer. I see things or moments I find beauty in and I try to capture them. As for the unexpected part, he asked if he could take a few photographs of me. I agreed. He made reference to doing sketches and asked if that was something I may be interested in doing but I declined. Rose may allow Jack to sketch her on the velvet settee but I’m just not open to that. Plus, I’m pretty sure Boyfriend would not approve.

Following the impromptu shoot I found my way to Belvedere Castle. When I hear castle I immediately think of a large stone structure. Belvedere is a miniature castle. Still, it’s a sight when you remember you’re in the middle of New York. The castle overlooks Turtle Pond which is much larger than I had imagined.

Belvedere Castle

Turtle Pond

Leaving the castle I found myself in the Shakespeare Garden. It’s filled with stone walkways, wooden benches donated in memory and some of the most beautiful flowers I've seen in awhile. The flowers throughout the garden all appear in his plays. I sat, I took it in, I didn't want to leave.


I've never been so in love with a flower bed.

I don't know what these are, but I know I want them.
On the way back I walked through the Ramble with the intention of getting a picture of Bow Bridge. I was quite successful.

Bow Bridge
I’m actually at a loss for the amount of amazing I had. After I retraced my path by Bethesda Fountain and The Mall I walked barefoot through Sheep’s meadow, a sprawling lawn filled with sunbathers, Frisbee throwers, people reading books and taking naps. The grass was soft and warm beneath my feet. I made sure to take my time crossing.

I left the park at the former Tavern on the Green and made my way a few short blocks to Vive La Crepe for an afternoon snack. The entire walk back to Port Authority I could not get over how perfect a day I had. Friendly interactions, beautiful flowers, amazing weather, class being cancelled (which allowed me to stay later), it was all so peaceful and relaxing. I was deliriously in love with life.


  1. OMIGOSH you like saw IT ALL!!!  I haven't been to the wisteria yet this year!  Just walking through midtown was killing my allergies!  I love the shots of Bethesda Terrace though, I didn't even realize they were that pretty!  Next time I'm there, I'll have to realllly look around!

  2. This sounds (and looks!) like a very perfect afternoon. I'm glad you are taking time to treat yourself with sights, sounds, and tastes of your beautiful home town. Thanks for sharing! 

  3. I really really absolutely want to go to Central Park. I will too. One day. I'm sure. Almost.

  4. Going to central park WILL be on my bucket list, it looks incredible! you are extremely lucky!

  5. Oh, it's all so beautiful! Thank you for taking all these and sharing (again!). This the first I've ever seen of Central Park (except for a few quick scenes in movies) and it's so spectacular and, in a way, diverse. I had expected just a very grand lawn type place..... but wow.... I want to come for a visit! 

  6. AbeerfortheshowerApril 19, 2012 at 9:33 AM

    What beautiful pictures. I love being touristy like that sometimes. As for those flowers... they CAN be yours. You just have to return at night, bring a pot, and run fast.

    You might think I'm kidding, but we have some flowers in our garden that I, uh, acquired in such a manner. :)

  7. I have never actually been to NY, but your pictures really really make me want to visit! Central Park looks pretty incredible! And I am so jealous of your warm weather! Enjoy :)


  8. That's a lot of fruit on that yogurt....

    Cool pics!

  9. okay a.) those flowers are gorgeous gorgeous GORGEOUS and b.) that day I checked into Pinkberry? First time. Holy God. Froyo? RIDIC. Soooooooooooo amazing. I never realized its full amazing potential. Now I'm in full-blown yogurt fever wherever I go. It's a problem. But it's nothing that can't be solved with more froyo.