I knew it would happen soon enough - the charm of a errant snowstorm would reel me in enough to announce a love affair with the cold. But there's been no skiing yet this January, and quite frankly, I need a tan. Now, I summer hard and well, and what I've learned in my time is that every good summer girl needs an accomplice. I like to call these my "summer sisters" and for the past few years, I've been dealt a very strong hand.
She and I had rekindled our friendship at a Beach Boys concert, and as far as I'm concerned that in itself is the basis of everything. We kept in touch throughout the winter, but once June rolled around, the spark was lit.
We went to polo matches. We lied in the grass and drank Dark n' Stormies until the horses went home. We went to Block Island. We drank mudslides and had serious dance parties at Yellow Kittens. We ate hot dogs at all hours of the days, went on a magical late night swim amongst bioluminescents and went skinny dipping at 2AM skinny in Sachem Pond. We celebrated New Years Eve with homemade pinatas and took over an island with 200 of our closest friends we just hadn't met yet.
I remember one fourth of July weekend, when we convened under the arbor behind a grey stone house. We threw back a few, and cut through the hedges lined with blue hydrangea as the sun melted over the Long Island Sound and the night turned blue. Twenty of us, in our best summer Nantucket reds, eyelet whites and gingham blues, trekked past ponds and manors, drinks in hand, down the winding Connecticut roads toward the shores of Tokeneke Club.
There were candlelit cabanas, Seabreezes and fireworks at every angle across the water to New York. There was a seven piece soul band, and now barefoot, we twisted and shouted until no brow was dry against the American flags along the front of the dancefloor.
The next night we hit the water and strung our boats together like a barrel of monkeys for hours in the misty night, until we sped back to the house to make pizzas with whatever we could get our hands on. We danced to 90s rap hits on marble countertops and drove vintage motorbikes across the lawn at three o'clock in the morning.
Summer is like a spark to the ridiculously spontaneous - those people who light up like fireflies when the hot sun goes down. And those long summer night talks that happen - the happy ones, the sad ones and the hundreds of talks about men - are memorialized in a way that seems almost eternal. That's the thing about summer sisters. They cement a time and a place in your memory that carries us through the remaining cold damp months of the year.
Tonight we'll set out on the town to celebrate. And though it's the middle of winter, there will be margaritas, plenty of summer spirit and these creamsicle cupcakes with blood orange-vanilla buttercream and candied blood oranges on top.
Happy happy birthday, to my summer sister Z. I am so lucky that our paths brought us together again, and I'm fortunate to call such a loyal woman, filled with incredible drive and values, my friend. To continued success and balance, my dear. To more life conversations and real talk, to romantic Greenwich dinners and to many many more nights of mayhem in every month of every year.