This past Friday, June 2nd 2017, I came upon some people who were hanging out upon a stoop of a one family brownstone that is located on the UWS of NYC. They were engaged in conversation; while enjoying pizza. Seeing them take such pleasure in the activity of eating pizza, while hanging out on a stoop during a Friday evening in NYC, gave me pleasure; and, I told them so.
I rarely take photos of people, but regretted not having my camera with me. Upon my telling them this, one of the stoop sitters, who referred to himself as Josiah Kargbo, took a picture with his cell phone, and emailed it to me. Kargbo's image is featured atop this blog entry.
The couple (N&J) who owns the brownstone are folks who I know on a little above the hi-how-you-fine-thanks status; and in all the years I've passed their building, I've never seen them sitting on their stoop to watch passersby. However, I have seen a number of persons of all shapes and sizes, of all genders, of all races, and, of all ages, hanging out on this stoop.
I take that back. One time I did see the couple sitting on their stoop while they enjoyed an ice-cream cone, and I dare say their motive for doing this might've been inspired by yours truly! Here's what happened: I was walking down the street when I noticed them standing in front of their building, enjoying ice-cream cones. They seem to be hesitating as they gazed down upon their stoop.
"Why not sit there?," I asked them, "everyone else does."
N&J heeded my suggestion, but I have never seen them sitting on their stoop since that time.
However, I did invite them to spend time in my rooftop garden when I launched the iBook version of Cam's book, Words In Our Beak Volume One.
In any event, I rarely see N&J on their stoop or otherwise, but, when it comes to them sitting on their stoop, I need to take my own advice!
While I don't have a stoop to sit on, I do have a lovely, tranquil, lush urban garden that's on a rooftop, which is only accessible via a door off the main living area of my apartment. The following image is my most recent view of it.
As you can see, it is a beautiful place to spend time, however, I confess, I rarely sit in my garden, except when I'm entertaining. In that respect I'm like N&J, although they don't spend time on their stoop when they entertain. And unlike N&J, I don't have stoop sitters enjoying my place.
However, over the years, many members of the avian community (including in alphabetical order: a lone American Goldfinch, a few American Robins, a lone Baltimore oriole, a few Blue Jays, a few Cardinals, a few Chickadees, several Common Grackles, a number of Dark-eyed Juncoes, a number of European starlings, a number of House Finches, dozens of Mourning Doves, a couple of Northern mockingbirds, numerous Pigeons, several House Sparrows, a handful of Tufted Titmouses, a few White-Breasted Nuthatches; and, even a lone raptor: an American kestrel) have spent time in my garden, while I am inside my apartment, sitting in front of my Mac-Book Pro!
Some of that is about to change because I'm taking my own advice to N&J re their stoop, and spending time in my outdoor space. I confess my promise to myself to do this, was prompted by a visit to my garden by a former colleague, Ruth French (a photograph — although it's quite pixelated — of her can be seen below).
Ruth came to visit my garden the night before I encountered Kargbo and his comrades on the stoop.
During Ruth's visit she let me know that she was appalled that I didn't start my day by having my morning coffee in my garden, and that instead I started my days with a cup of coffee while I checked Twitter, my Facebook Page, and my e-mails. She pointed out that how one starts the day sets the tone for the entire day. I made a promise to her, and to myself, that I would begin my day outside, with my coffee, and take in the beauty surrounding me. For the most part, I've complied with her heartfelt suggestion, and I'm very thankful that I have.
Lately, when I'm in my garden, I've been entertained by a young European starling who has discovered one of life's simple pleasures: eating grapes. What a joy it has been to watch this creature's "interaction" with a grape, as evidenced by the following images.
And it seems this little creature is watching me too (as seen in the next set of pictures).
However, I'm not sure if he/she is experiencing the same joy in observing me as I do in watching him/her. Be that as it may, I most grateful to Ruth French for advising me to spend time in my own garden. However, the birds might wish I'd stay inside, and let them have the garden to themselves, but I hope they get used to me being in my garden and spending time among them.
ADENMENDUM: The digital versions of Volume One within the Words In Our Beak book series that are mentioned in this entry may only remain available for a limited time, but a hardcover version of Volume One can be found wherever books are sold.
Moreover, Volume Two of the book series is now available! Both volumes one and two are in hardcover format (as seen below) and can be purchased any place where books are sold.
Volume One: ISBN: 9780996378529:
Book Seller Info: http://bit.ly/2AFZDCz
Now available on Amazon @ https://amzn.to/2IYkmpA and can be ordered from any place selling books by giving them the title and/or ISBN which is 978099637853