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Sunday in the Park with Patrick, Lanny, Karen, Jennifer, Elizabeth, and Raul

Posted Jun 30 2013 7:39am
A week ago today I was trotting around Lisbon with a handful of people from around the United States who were technically strangers to me. As the next four days unfolded, the beauty of each of them unfolded as well. 

But even as I discovered that Patrick* has a playful love of Kinder Eggs (banned in the United States due to the choking hazard of the small toys inside these chocolate treats), and that Lanny's* son is serving in the military in Kuwait, and that Karen* is a doting aunt (and doted on me when I got motion sickness), and that Jennifer* read one of Elizabeth's* books as assigned reading in her college's environmental studies class, and that Raul* dreams of taking an RV trip across Route 66 and one day owning a winery, I still think back to the peace and pleasure of that first afternoon in the park, when every jet-lagged one of us simply relaxed into the moment.  Now, that was nice

See here (warning: my characteristic NYPD-style shaky camera work is in full force for this one):

Sunday in the Park in Lisbon from Pattie Baker on Vimeo .

Greenspace is a big deal. I've researched, written about, and advocated for it a whole lot (including when I served on the steering committee for the Comprehensive Land Use Plan for what was until recently the newest city in the United States). See some of my greenspace links here .

You don't need to read facts and figures and watch PowerPoint presentations given by "experts" to know in your heart of hearts how essential the nature experience is in an urban environment. You simply need to lie on the grass in the cool of the shade, look up at the trees, and watch people around you nap, nibble local delectables, toss a frisbee to a dog, exercise on all-ages-friendly equipment, and listen to music. It's really not that complicated.

* Patrick Spencer is the Executive Director of the Cork Forest Conservation Alliance in the Portland, Oregon area.

Lanny Johnson is the Production Manager of Rutherford Hill Winery in the Napa Valley in California

Karen Devine, based in the Napa Valley, is a sales representative for Amorim Cork America .

Jennifer Kongs is the Managing Editor of Mother Earth News in Topeka, Kansas.

Elizabeth Royte lives in Brooklyn, New York, and is the author of several environmentally-focused books and a prominent freelance science writer .

Raul Valle is the Public Relations and Corporate Communications associate at Amorim & Irmaos , based in Porto, Portugal.
eclectic food-for-thought for a changing world
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