Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Day I Stood Close to the Sun

A week ago today, I enjoyed a delightfully small, vigorous yoga class. At the end of savasana, I leapt up and looked out the window to see whether my friend Sue had arrived at the Starbucks across the street. There she was. Striped skirt, lemon yellow tee. I hurried to get changed, and ran downstairs, zipped across 5th Avenue to meet a woman, who until then, I had only known through her writing. Well, that and the fact that we have several other blogging buddies in common. Is it not said that we are known by the company we keep?

The funny thing is that I knew Sue was coming at a least a month before she arrived. I knew we'd meet at around 7:30 in the Chelsea/Flatiron district of Manhattan. Did I scout out a suitable spot to sit for a drink or nosh? Nope. So, as much as I think I like to have a plan, I guess I truly am a seat of the pants kind of gal.

We walked around around Madison Square Park, named for President James Madison, and the origin of Madison Avenue. I asked Sue if she had any preferences. She didn't, other then a stiff drink. Done and done! We wound up at a place called A Voce. It had a wonderful looking outdoor seating area (while I didn't plan an actual venue, I DID envision an outdoorish pub). We knew it would be expensive just by the look of it, but didn't want to wander much further. And really, in that area, it wouldn't's ALL expensive.

Upon being seated, we were presented with menus, cocktail menus and a wine list. It was absolutely huge. Sue suggested we guess what the most expensive bottle would cost. I, trying to appear as urbane as the city I was showing off, guessed around $800. Sue laughed, saying she was thinking $250 to 300. Sue has a fantastic picture of how wrong we were on her blog. You can also visit here to be regaled by their Wine Spectator rated cellars. Truly how the other half lives!

Sue ordered a Cosmo, I ordered one of their own gin creations that tasted like pink grapefruit. Very refreshing. We shared a fresh ricotta and warm bread appetizer, and set about getting to know each other better. We talked about blogging buddies we follow, and how great it would be to meet them all. Big life changes. Culture shock. Traveling, kids, marriage in general. It was a fantastic experience. We settled up, and walked across town to the 8th Avenue line. I misjudged it by a few blocks, sorry, Sue, I know you walked your feet off and didn't need that extra 3 blocks...but it allowed the conversation to continue. Sue was the smart one...she brought a camera to document the event. Here we are on the C train headed uptown. We would part at Times Square to return each to our own waiting husbands and sleeping kids.

It really is amazing to meet someone you've only read. What we write in our spaces is full of who we are as people: Our joys, our inspirations, the things with which we struggle, or maybe just news. In my virtual travels, I am reminded again and again of how similar we all are. Not nearly as disparate beings as we sometimes make ourselves out to be. It is a different sense of connectedness in this milieu than we experience with our circle of friends and family, but just as vital in some ways. This was my first experience with matching the actual to the virtual, and I sincerely hope it will not by my last.



Fusion said...

*drops jaw*

$9500 for a bottle of wine?!?!


It's nice to meet fellow bloggers, isn't it? I've met 3, not counting the one I lived with for 8 months in Australia. This summer I'm going to meet 10 more as I drive around the US, and I can't wait!

The Real Mother Hen said...

What a great experience!
I hope to meet some of my blogging friends in real life too... but maybe not, knowing me, gee I'll probably scare them away and they won't read my blog anymore! :()

Kate said...

That is so fun! I'm in awe that you two had such a cool opportunity. When are you coming to Salt Lake? ;)

The World According To Me said...

Sounds like you both had a great time together. After reading each others lives, you stepped into each others lives.

I agree with the virtual travels comment, I am also reminded again and again how similar we all are. Many times I have blog hopped and been nodding my head in agreement and understanding exactly where a fellow blogger is coming from!

Rebecca said...

Fusion, lemme know if your travels bring you to NYC!

Kate, Dunno when we'll make it West, but look me up if you come East :)


Nick said...

What puzzles me is - How would you actually know if a bottle of wine is worth say, $9000? How much better would it have to be than one for $4500? How would you know if you'd been scammed and it was really only worth $6000? But I suppose the real point is just to show off your bottomless wealth and the actual price is irrelevant....

suesun said...

I LOVE the title of this post!

Thanks again for a lovely evening in Manhattan! I'm sure I'll be out that way again in the future.

simonsays said...

I read this wonderful post yesterday, but was then interrupted and did not comment.

It is AWESOME that you had the opportunity to meet a blogging pal. Isn't is the greatest thing to finally get to see them IRL? Blogging has brought THE best people to my life.

Have a good weekend. Be happy, and make some time just for you. There. That's my advice for this day.


Foster Communications said...

V. v. cool! Sounds like a great time! And gulp! I can't imagine spending that much on a bottle of wine. Sadly I can imagine being a klutz and spilling it!!!

Eastcoastdweller said...

I'm happy for You, that it went so well. Sometimes reality and virtual DON'T match.

But my Sister met a guy online and they are still happily married, two kids and ten years later.

Bah said...

So cool! Most of my blogging buds are scads of miles away, so I doubt I'll meet any of them, but I'm so glad that you did! The wine price is fucked up (oops, sorry)(not really).

simonsays said...

Okay, now where are you?

Missing your words of wisdom, not to mention your wit.


Check in, will ya?


bernard n. shull said...
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