Thursday, August 25, 2005

The worst thing about winter…

…is that it can make us anti-social.

I just spent the evening hanging out with my neighbors; something we do on a regular, albeit impromptu, fashion.

It usually begins with two of us casually chatting in front of one of our houses. If we have dogs, they run around and play together. Chairs are invariably pulled out and beers cracked open. Other neighbors see what’s going on and they join the fun. Maybe they bring over some wine, or something to munch on—like cheese and crackers, or olives. Because it’s summer and the windows are open, we turn up the music so that it can be heard outside of the house. All the while local kids run around screaming in delight, playing with the dogs and each other as they stuff themselves full of candy.

Tonight was a particularly nice “party.” I made a beer run and my neighbor Chris—a great cook—served up homemade pesto, four different kinds of cheeses, two types of olives, refreshing pasta, and some grilled chicken and spicy Italian sausages.

We still have one more month of warm weather, but I’m already saddened by the fact that once it gets cold, these impromptu neighborhood hangout sessions will be over until next summer. Yeah, we’ll all get together for a house party or two, but it’s not the same.

It reminds me of the time years ago when my ex-Israeli/current southern California relatives made a visit to Milwaukee during winter. My “aunt” Rachel commented that the city seemed like a ghost town because the streets were empty. She was right. Winter does that.

This doesn’t mean that I hate winter completely. I’ll always have fond memories of winter, and I can’t imagine the Christmas, er, I mean Chanukkah, season without snow. But when half of the year’s whether is so crappy that you want to remain ensconced inside your home, it has a way of decreasing your quality of life.

Anyway, I just got a call from my neighbor. They are very disappointed in me because apparently one of the six packs of beer I bought—Becks—was non-alcoholic. Oops. I feel a bit foolish.

Here's to summer!


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