Books and parks and other nice things

Meridian Hill Park

In my last post, I mentioned how we recently had book club in the park. This could not have come at a better time for me. About a month ago, I hopped on a flight and spent a quick weekend with friends and family, fitting in one of my Mom’s favorite activities: walking Denver’s crown jewel that is Wash Park. I won’t even link pictures of this park because they simply do not do it justice. It’s a sprawling three-mile loop with gorgeous [deciduous] trees (rare in CO), ponds, gardens, tennis and basketball courts, and picnic areas. My first apartment was in the Wash Park area, and during the year I lived there, I ran the park almost every day. I have so many good memories nestled around there. Anyhow, I walked it with my Momma, and ever since that day, I’ve been missing Denver a little more.*

So book club in an amazing DC park was well-timed. I should say that after suffering Wash Park withdrawals, Colby and I did grab a blanket and some books and camped out under the parameter of The Mall, which offers plenty of shade. That was of course wonderful, but the people watching is not the same–all tourist, which isn’t as fun as it sounds! Anyhow, our book club had read Room by Emma Donoghue for this month, and in my opinion, it was the best pick we’ve had this year. We had pre-mixed mimosas, fresh fruit, and I brought along this yummy pie. It was a hit! Our playground for the day was Meridian Hill Park (formerly, or maybe aka Malcolm X Park), about 15 blocks from our place.

MHP is beautiful in a way completely different from Wash Park. It’s certainly not as big, but it is far more grand. It has statues of Dante, Joan of Arc, President Buchanon (who knows why…), cascading fountains, and impressive stone steps weaving throughout the gardens. People set up hammocks in the trees, slack lines, picnic blankets, and drum circles. Yes, drum circles. DC has few hippies, but they can all be found in this one park on Sunday afternoons. Though we might never drum circle or hula hoop there, I’m happy to say we’ve found a park for reading, walking, playing Scrabble. Restorative park? Check.

A self-portrait in the gardens.

Truth be told, Denver would never have this much water in a park.

*Currently tugging on my Denver heartstrings is The Lumineers. Seeing as I’m 1500 miles away, I heard about them when looking up a Josh Ritter concert at Wolf Trap. Too bad we’ll be halfway ’round the world by then.

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