There’s little more that I love more than a party. The drinks. The chit-chat. The music. The connection. I once drove six hours to attend a shindig in Maryland. I had to make an event that my friends, Gary and Lauren, hosted with a whole roasted pig as their guest of honor.
On more than one occasion I guided my little mule of a Miata to New Hampshire to attend the art of openings of a friend, MJ, who is a great painter. During one trip, her surprise guests, “her two Italians” as she called them, required me to jump right into using my Italian skills after six hours behind the wheel. And I still found time to hit the spontaneous dance floor that rose up between MJ’s dinning and living areas.
Over my twenty plus years as a free woman of the world, I’ve attended soirees in Paris and bashes in London. I’ve attended house parties in Detroit, in my youth, where decades later, I can still hear the thrum of The Ohio Players and Earth Wind and Fire. I’ve done New Years Eve in New York City at my home, at the homes of folks whose names have been lost to memory, and at the loft of my friends Heather and Todd.
If I didn’t attend a party, well I had a damn good reason. And I made them, mostly, to myself. I hate missing a party. But on October 7th, on a Saturday, I reached a new point with parties.
I just plain forgot.
After a sharing a dinner of broiled Salmon, herb orzo, and garlic brocoli, with Julia, a totally entranced act because she actually ate the broccoli, savored the salmon, and nibbled the orzo, to my amazement just as her pediatrician said my 28 -month-old would.
As I the cleared the table, and contemplated our deser, Julia let me know she had other ideas.
“Show! Show!” She bellowed, her code word for the ” Baby Einstein” CDs she loves.
So I popped a disc in the player. Julia launched a smile. And after a stream of baby faces, and baby words, nose, le nazo, face, la cara, as the disc played out her Spanish and English vocabulary, and we headed into the last of the minutes of the performance. The kiddie number one hit “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes,” filled the air. Julia jumped to her feet. I followed.
It was during the second round of the hypnotic music track, during our living room romp, that a wild thought popped into my head.
“Heather and Todd’s party!” Oh God, it’s tonight!
I forget. I. Forget.
This isn’t to say I am infallible. It was more a road sign. A marker, that my life has changed in a profound way. This I knew. Many things have changed. However, it took a small thing, a small act of doing the toddler macarena in my living room, correction in our living room, with my daughter on the last of the warm Saturday nights, in the greatest city in the world, with a group of some of my closest friends gathered in downtown Manhattan, holding cool drinks and warm conversation for me to realize just how much it had.