after working primo late on friday night (got the report out!) I got up early on sat. and took a bus into the city to meet my ride up to the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park. my alma mater’s alumni council (of which I am an accidental member) was meeting there for a special luncheon. Rocco and Xenia picked me up outside of Port Authority and we cruised upstate. It was a quick trip, and I’d brought munchkins for the ride. Originally I had lovely plans to bring croissant and strawberries, you know, something more appropriate for our big fancy luncheon at the CIA, but when you work until 11:30 you might not have a chance to stop at whole foods on the way home. Anyway, I had to break a $20 to get change for the bus fare, so it was convenient (and appreciated).
We ate in the Escoffier Resturant and I have to be totally honest: the food was good, but not as mindblowingly good as I had expected. the portions were larger than I thought they’d be (we left feeling overfull – which is NOT at all what I thought would happen!) and maybe they just weren’t plated nicely enough for the occasion to seem extraordinarily special. And I’ve had better food in pittsburgh! Maybe I am more accustomed to fine dining than I thought.
Hyde Park is beautiful. I’ve never really spent much time up there, but after eating at the CIA we were directed by a fellow alum (Class of 1948) to take the road through the vanderbilt estate and then to their home, which is the old vanderbilt carriage house lovingly renovated into a beautiful loft home. We spent the rest of the afternoon getting to know the others on the alumni council a little better. The main body only meets 3x a year, so it’s hard to get to know people at the meetings. and the carriage house was BEAUTIFUL, and we got a lot of great stories from some illustrious alum.
After that we had dinner with Xenia’s sister, and I got the 9:33 train south from poughkeepsie. After a quick trip across town on the 7 I was at port authority just in time to catch the 12AM bus, only it didn’t show up for another 20 minutes, and was standing room only. So I bit the bullet and waited for the 12:30. I was home by 1AM but penalized for my patience by having to sit next to a slightly garrulous and excessively friendly gentleman who ultimately advised me that I couldn’t find a “real man” in a book (or on a bus, I could have rejoined). When all gentle hints that I was READING were ineffective, I had to tell him coldly that I wasn’t interested in discussing my personal life with a stranger. When I got home, I was so ramped from trying not to speak to this man that I ended up reading for another hour or so. Luckily my book was interesting, and my recliner comfortable!