I am definitely not an outdoor girl ... I mean, I can appreciate a beautiful day as much as the next person, but I usually prefer to be indoors and out of the sun. This past Sunday I decided to change things up a bit. I knew I had to be downtown in the morning for church, and then again in the afternoon to meet up for coffee with my friend Sue. So ... since I'm trying to be wise about my gasoline consumption, instead of driving back and forth twice, I decided just to stay downtown between church and coffee. I rarely ever go downtown in the summer because it's too hot and too touristy, but I figured if I stayed away from the busy areas, it might really be enjoyable. So, I packed a bag in the morning with some snacks, my camera, my sketchbook, and a sewing project ... enough to keep me occupied for a few hours.
After church I headed over to a fun park downtown and sat myself down on a shaded bench.
It was a gorgeous day ... sunny and warm, with a cool breeze coming off the water. It was really very comfortable, which isn't always the case in the summertime here! There weren't very many people in the park ... I think most everyone decided instead to go to the beach since it was so nice outside. Fine with me! I really enjoyed the quiet. I used some of my time to sketch out some ideas that have been running through my head ... different projects that I want to start (after I finish the ones I'm currently working on, of course!) and some creative brainstorming.
I also took some pictures ... although I still don't really know how to use all the settings on my camera, so they definitely came out a little dark.
I am sure that my favorite tree is the live oak. I just think they are so beautiful. I can't get enough of them.
This picture was taken from my little park bench ... I love the color contrast and the clean lines of the gazebo right next to the natural curves of the live oaks. So beautiful.
I got a visit from a friendly little bird. She kept coming right up to my feet ... must have been fed by people before. She wouldn't sit still for long enough to take a decent photo, but I had to try anyway ... I also got a number of visits from people who shared my little bench at different points in the afternoon. It was fun to chat with them and see where they were from and what they were doing in the park. One local woman told me of how she lives in the area and often has tourists knocking on her door to use her powder room! A tourist from Africa (of all places!) stopped by with her three daughters to say hello, and a couple from New York sat down for a few minutes and told me that the shape of downtown reminded them of the shape of Manhattan. Funny ... I never noticed that!
In between sketching and taking pictures and talking to passers-by, I worked on this dress for my friends Andy & Michelle who recently had their first daughter. I am really looking forward to getting it finished so that I can give it to them! I almost finished the smocking while I was sitting there, so it should be ready to go very soon!
All in all, it was a lovely day ... with the exception of the random ants, flies, and unidentifiable bugs that kept landing on me (and, incidentally, that I kept finding crawling on me well into my coffee date with Sue). But (and I can't believe I'm saying this!), it was still worth it to have some solitude outdoors and enjoy this beautiful city. I think I'll do it again soon!