When I was a young girl, it was the practice for our neighbors to have summer picnics in our backyards. Neighbors brought their picnic tables to a given yard and soon the families arrived with delicious dishes to pass. These times were so much fun.
Last summer I got the idea to try to get a neighborhood picnic together, but my idea just sat there - simmering on the back burner. This summer, I decided to act on it. I contacted the president of our association and told her my idea, and asked if she could provide me with the names and mailing addresses of all of the people in my building and the building across the backyard. Once I got the information, I looked at the calendar and decided on the second Saturday of August. I composed invitations - introducing myself and presenting my idea - and mailed them a couple of weeks ago, Perhaps I should have included an RSVP, but I didn't, so I wasn't sure how many people would come.
This morning started out with rain, but the forecast was for clearing skies in the early afternoon. Sure enough, around 3 it cleared off. At 3:30 I started putting out some of my furniture and decorations - some colorful pepper plants (orange, red and purple), and helium balloons. A couple of the neighbors arrived and they helped me carry out more furniture. By 4, we had 12 people! After visiting for a bit, I thanked everyone for coming and began the introductions. We sat at two tables, and the visiting was very nice.
Suddenly a big, black cloud descended on us and the skies opened up. A couple of neighbors took off for home, but the rest grabbed my kitchen table and all of the wooden chairs and brought them up on my patio. There were 9 of us who were now gathered on my covered patio. I brought out more chairs, and we had so much fun - talking and talking and laughing. We learned more about each other - where do you work? how long have you lived here? That sort of thing. There seemed to be a consensus: everyone had a very nice time, and they thanked me again and again for coming up with the idea and said they hope we do it again next summer.