Today my wife and I went to a block party one away from ours. Interestingly, we have many friends on that block, but none really on our own. Fortunately we were invited to the party because, well, we're friends with many on the block. I'd never been to a block party before; we arrived too late for one on the same block two years ago. This was a nice event. It was an excuse to visit with neighbors we regularly see and others we only say hello to when we walk the neighborhood.
So why an entry here? It seems to fit into my vision of the mythic American family life. A block party where people eat three kinds of turkey (roasted, smoked, and deep-fried), potato salad, and dishes and dishes of desserts. We sat in chairs around tables in the street. Kids played around the adults like satellites. The tree-lined street provided shade, while all of the women asked my wife about our coming twins. I feel like I've seen this on an after-school special or on an episode of Little House on the Prairie.
I've often railed against nostalgia for a time that never existed, but there are kernels of truth in that nostalgia.
We were only there a couple of hours. The party was only a few. It was perfect. After we returned home, I felt like we had traveled to a different time, but then I realized this was just the right time.