While we were in LA – and after our hike, Djuna invited us back to her perfectly welcoming home nestled in Highland Park. It was that witching hour when the sun is setting, casting magical shadows everywhere you look, and everyone is in a good mood. But these are no normal hosts – no, Djuna and her man Nikolai are quite possibly some of the kindest, coolest hosts I’ve ever come across.
With Djuna squeezing fresh lemons for the cocktail concoction she was stirring up – with her friends new tequila brand nonetheless, Nikolais was found just outside by the pink adobe oven, chopping wood for the handmade pizzas (a gluten free version too!) he was about to prepare. Dream couple! Seriously. And then, the coup de grâce – a game of Wolves & Villagers played out with such exquisite theatrics you couldn’t help but be immersed into their world . We played for hours, with new friends coming and going, getting fired up over the outcome and laughing with every ridiculous reasoning laid out ….
It was right then I may have started to miss California a bit more than normal – those game nights with friends situated about the living room (Djuna’s living room, BTW, was built specifically so they could play THIS game. Not joking. No, I’m serious!) just enjoying each others company.
That’s the difference between LA and NY – no one hangs out at home here in New York! Or you hang out at home, but by yourself, or with your mate on the couch indulging in a binge session on Netflix or simply petting your dog. In New York, not everyone has a space that’s worthy of hosting a party of 15 for a raucous game night. There’s a cap on occupancy at the dinner table set for 8 (max!), and as much as we all want to hang out with each other, the need AND energy for a big group hang is often lost to the 14,679 strangers we encounter on a daily basis.
But when you think about it, New York City is kind of like the most welcoming host of all, right?
Djuna wears all vintage