###Years ago, I remember speaking with a friend whose family had transplanted to New York City from my small hometown in Colorado. I remember expressing great concern over the fact that his kids were growing up without a proper backyard. He scoffed at the notion: “My kids have the best backyard in the world — it’s called Central Park.”
Fast forward to present day, and, well, yeah. It’s a pretty well-equipped backyard. One that I frequent almost daily. My only disclaimer would be this: the place is absolutely crawling with blissful couples. It’s downright sickening to a bachelor such as myself.
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To wit, let me share some assorted observations from a recent run at sundown. An especially productive five-minute period yielded the following:
- Two thirteen-year-olds embrace on a bench hidden in a grove of something deciduous, the throes of young love casting a tangible energy about them.
- A twenty-something girl of ambiguously Mediterranean nationality poses arms akimbo against the railing of a bridge as her partner snaps photos and incants jokes to her in their shared foreign tongue.
- A humpbacked septuagenarian couple shuffle by at snail pace, hands held in the middle, canes rattling the pavement as they go.
- Two middle-aged men make a quite public display of affection under the boughs of a flowering tree, oblivious to passersby and every bit as smitten as the tween pair aforementioned.
- In The Ramble — a section of the park so-named for its labyrinthine circuits of interconnecting paths and overgrown vegetation — I turn a corner and happen upon a man on one knee, his girlfriend standing adjacent him with both hands to her mouth. Moments later, I hear a rapturous shriek originating from the same location.
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And I do solemnly swear that all of that actually happened. Frankly, with the exception of the proposal (that was a first), I see the same sights nearly everyday. Something to do with the warm air, the verdant backdrop, the almost total lack of pressure and excessive spending that attend other date locales and activities. I have no choice but to conclude that parks are the ideal summer date location.
So take your special someone to your city’s best park this weekend. There is magic in the air there. Here are ten activities to consider once you arrive: