“It’s crazy; Federer, Sharapova and Nadal are all out now.”
This is one of my favorite times of the year with my husband. As the tennis tournament, Wimbledon, builds momentum, he and I will get up early and watch it together- a wonderful way to start my day. I like tennis, for sure, but the best part of our tradition is sharing memories of when we lived in England and had the lucky opportunity to attend Wimbledon in person. It is an iconic aspect of our time there.
Imagine… the only way to go to Wimbledon is to win a spot in the lottery (or to camp out the night before and hope you will get a released ticket.) Thus, when you get there, you already feel lucky. The day we went was a perfectly sunny, summer day. In fact, it was July 4th; our own private celebration of the American holiday while in England. We knew we had somehow scored center court seats. What we didn’t know was that our seats were about seven rows up from the court and right in the middle.
The environment at Wimbledon is one of a party. Fans are hanging out, watching matches on the big screen set up at the bottom of a grassy mound. Everyone is drinking Pimm’s or champagne and eating strawberries and cream.
Occasionally the Royal family shows up, but frequently there are famous celebrities like Richard Branson or Rupert Grint (of Harry Potter).
It’s been over ten years since that day at Wimbledon, but no matter who is left in the tournament you will find us still, Pimms Drink in hand, watching the matches on the 4th of July. It is how we now celebrate both our own country as well as our closest ally.
How do you celebrate the 4th? Are you a tennis fan? Have you ever been to a sporting event that was so special it
became part of your ongoing life? I’d love to hear about it. Please leave a comment and let me know.
In preparation for the 4th, here’s our recipe for Pimm’s Cup.
Pimm’s is a unique British liqueur with a different kind of taste. It takes some getting used to, but the spiciness of
it is very refreshing on a hot day. The Pimm’s cocktail is apparently becoming quite popular in the U.S. as well (NY Times article) Note: the best part of this drink is its simplicity to make.
2 cups - Pimm’s No. 1
6 cups - 7-Up (or ginger ale)
1 Oranges, cut into wedges
1 Lemon, cut in wedges
Other fruit to taste – I’ve added nectarine, apple, even pineapple before. Cut in wedges.
1 cucumber, sliced
Bunch of mint
In a large pitcher use a wooden spoon to muddle the mint then add the Pimm’s, the soda, the cut fruit and 5-6 slices of the cucumber. Mix with the spoon and let sit in the fridge for ½ an hour. Serve over ice with a slice of cucumber on the edge of the cup. Enjoy!
“A midwife? It’s like a nurse or something at home that helps deliver the baby. Yeah. I think that is what she wants to do.”
The incongruity of two, mid-twenty something guys, drinking their daytime beers while talking about having a baby struck me as funny and was elevated by the fact that I was there to buy tickets for a Super Diamond concert (like Neil Diamond for those who don’t know him).
The huge bar was empty, other than me, the two guys talking about babies, and a one man act playing guitar and talking to a table of drab looking women. It was not exactly the type of place I am usually to be found on any given Saturday, at least not anymore. There was a time in my life when I could imagine having hung out at just this sort of bar. Post college, pre marriage; that time filled with late nights and friends and not always the smartest decisions.
It is not a time I miss much at all. There was a lot of insecurity attached to doing the wrong things for me… so I don’t think I was ever truly comfortable in the role of twenty-something party girl. I like to think this wasn’t obvious to my friends, but the fact that I asked, “are you sure this is okay?” many times a night probably gave it away.
So reaching the milestone of enjoying a family lifestyle was a big cause for celebration. I am quite happy to be in bed by 9:00 p.m. at night; to prepare breakfast for my daughter and put the dishes in the dishwasher once she is at school. These are little joys that belong in my life more than dancing to a DJ ever did.
The two guys at the bar seemed very blasé about having a baby, but I know the truth…. And they probably do as well. After all, they were quietly drinking their beer on a rainy midafternoon rather than surrounded by a crowds in a rockin’ bar late at night.
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