Cheeky on the Charles

The other night was so lovely out that we decided to take a stroll, discovering a well-kept pathway along the Charles River. It's not a quarter-mile from our front door, which was such a pleasant surprise! We knew it was close, but not whether it was pedestrian-friendly (turns out bikes are welcome, too). We followed the path to a sweet little bridge connecting ours to the next town over. While that particular bridge has only been there a hundred years or so, there's been a bridge over that particular part of the Charles since 1641! That is a very long time ago, people.

There it is behind me! Isn't it lovely? The light is so pretty at sundown, especially on the river. If the bridge looks familiar, that’s probably because it had a moment with Meryl Streep at the start of The River Wild, a SUPER GREAT 90s film also starring Kevin Bacon. So.

That little duck came to make friends with M. It is easy to walk a handful of miles when it's as pretty and lush as this - you don't even notice it!

Our goal was to check out the little pier, because it was being renovated when we first moved here and they just reopened it a few weeks ago. A couple of little kids were attempting to fish off it (one very determined little girl in particular), and an old man came to sit on the steps just in front of it. Another young man sat in the spot opposite. "We're like a couple of old lion statues, sitting here. Like in front of a great big house, standing guard," he said out loud, but the other guy was wearing headphones. Things like that snap my silly heart like a twig, so I smiled at the old guy.

The pier itself was sound.

As night falls, patterns emerge along the Charles. Young people move, they're jogging or biking or walking very quickly on their phones and whatnot, ignoring one another and everything else. The old people stroll, they sit in pairs like lovebirds on the benches, sometimes with their shoes kicked off, silently looking out at the water sparkling with deep, brilliant sunshine, or murmuring quietly to one another. When they look up they'll smile or nod politely. Children are the same as ever, shrieking wildly or plaguing their parents with cries or whys and adorable how comes.

It's so delightfully cliché, the order of things in a small New England town, it makes me feel so cupped and cozy.

The river, though, is such a tease! In some ways it's as bad a tease as the Pacific is to San Francisco - the ocean water is so, so cold. It can be scorching hot a handful of days out of the year in SF, but you're still insane if you really swim. (That's what Lake Temescal is for, right?)

I'm the kind of girl who thinks if you can't have the Caribbean - or better yet, the Mediterranean - for swimming, then the next best thing is a good old river, like the Russian River. I'm very fond of that river, we go way back to my very infancy. Anyway, there's no swimming or splashing around in the Charles River, my friends. There it is, winding stoically through 22 cities and towns for an infuriating 80 miles, and you can't get in the damn thing to cool off on a hot summer day!

But it looks so clean and inviting.

Until you're up very close, which calls to mind Lake Merritt! Oh, well. Thank goodness for lakes and Cape Cod?! We'll go with that. My dream river, in case you're dying to know, is the Rio Celeste in Costa Rica. Google it!

This floral dress has a funny story behind it. When we first moved in, we had about a week and a half before the movers came with our stuff. We needed some big ticket items, namely three new beds - one for us, one for the petite, and one for our guest room. The air mattress we bought recently was a poor replacement for the one we had before that, which was very comfortable but lost in the hubbub of things loaned to friends, and the thought of sleeping on it another night seriously nearly drove me to tears. So off we went in search of beds on a very warm day.

You cannot just wear anything to go bounce around on mattresses, y'all. You cannot, for instance, wear a typical summer dress. Women will give you dirty looks, men will ogle and the normal act of lying down beside your wife on the insanely dreamlike cloud of a Hotel Collection mattress suddenly becomes lewd, because after a few nights of shitty air mattress sleep you will moan like a character girl on The Real L Word on that very expensive cloud, you will not be able to stop yourself.

I needed more clothes. That was just Macy's, and we had to test mattresses at a few more stores before deciding! It was going to be a long afternoon of lying down in public, so I ducked into a store - I think it was a TJ Maxx - next door and grabbed the cheapest, least hideous maxi dress I could find on the racks. This one was like $20, hurrah! I changed in the dressing room after we paid for it, grateful that the shoes and belt I had on worked with it, and stuffed my tiny summer dress into my bag. So much better!

Alas, we hate our new mattress and are despondent about the fact that our old mattress was discontinued long ago, because we loved that mattress. We've discovered that memory foam is a pile of shit and that while M prefers to consider herself a firm mattress person, she is not. I'm working with her to accept that we are plush people, and we're trying to find a replacement that doesn't require its own mortgage. Oh, to be young and happy on just any old mattress!

The dress is surprisingly great. It's easy and comfortable to wear, and the ruffled top and deep V-back make it look fancier than it feels. I wore it with flat sandals and a lazy ponytail to the estate sales one Sunday and was told (thanks, random lady, for your unsolicited opinion) that I was overdressed, so there's that.

Here I paired it with an old, braided H&M belt and a pair of new canvas and faux leather sandals from Aeropostale. The mixed-metal chain necklace is from Macy's, and the chunky gold bracelet is from JewelMint. I got the starfish ring earlier this summer from In Pink. My nails are painted with OPI's Cajun Shrimp, a creamy, bright strawberry red with a hint of orange, and it's been a summer favorite since I picked it up!

A few miscellaneous shots from our walk. I loved the striking brick red against the blue sky, reflections of the fluffy clouds in the water, bright fiery orange flowers, some intriguing tree bark and the two of us goofing around.

Hope everyone's having a pleasant weekend, the weather is perfect here and we've got to go be out in it!

XOXO,

FFAF