Lars and Esme

My mom, Razia, grew up flying kites all the time in Afghanistan, so when I heard about this kite festival, I made sure to bring my whole family, including our 10 year old daughter Esme, who loves them too. My mom didn’t make it into the photo, but she flew the hell out of this kite too. I’ll always remember everyone in our big group giving it a whirl, and Esme racing across the field, successfully keeping it aloft whenever the wind dipped.

We live close to Echo Park Lake, which is my very favorite public space in Los Angeles. The park has gone through many phases, but since I moved here 17 years ago, it’s been the most diverse, welcoming place that i’ve found to spend a few hours relaxing with family or friends, around lots of other people doing the same. The kite festival points at the riches of community in LA, and how a public space that’s cared for can help us collectively realize the best aspects of all being packed in this one city together. The spectacle, crowds, music were all just tuned just right — a truly beautiful idea. We’ll bring more kites to the next one.