When these pictures were taken, we lived in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago, on the same street -- Harper Avenue -- a block apart. I lived in a comparatively large first floor studio that cost $300 a month. My dad built a large bookcase that I used to divide the room into a sleeping half and a living room half. The future husband lived in a tiny studio with a Murphy bed. I believe his kitchen was basically a closet. There was a little shopping center, Harper Court, in between our apartment buildings. When I remember Harper Court as it was then, it was something of a marvel. This was before chain stores flooded the neighborhood. Harper Court had, among other things, a fabulous independent toy store, just perfect in every way, a Danish furniture store, a florist, and an artists' co-op with work by local artists. There were checkerboard benches in the center of the square where old men played chess on sunny days. The pictures were taken in a wonderful Japanese restaurant in Harper Court that was the first place I ever saw with a sushi bar. They also served very tasty tempura and salmon teriyaki, but the biggest treat was the red bean ice cream that they flew in from Japan.
Sadly, the restaurant no longer exists. And really, neither do these two impossibly young people. After thirty years, of course we're older (with more girth and less hair) and, one hopes, a bit wiser. Less dewy-eyed, with perhaps fewer dreams. The people we've become, though, are okay too -- even if we no longer know where to find red bean ice cream.