Sometimes all it takes is a little timing and luck and things work out better than you could have imagined. In mid November Aaron left his job where he had been working for a few years in search of one more challenging. I wasn’t surprised when within a few weeks he was able to find one which he thinks he will love. Making it even better the job was not going to start until the second week of January.
What could be better he, (or we,) now had 5 weeks in which we could relax and take it easy. We did make some plans to work on our Blog, to try and get more serious about working out and some other projects we had been neglecting. Just as we were beginning our ambitious plans to finally get ahead of ourselves for once, we received an invitation to a surprise birthday for one of my closest friends.
At first we answered with an outright no, not possible. The party was in New York and we were in Dublin and we only had three days notice. After a bit of cajoling however, we hopped on a plane the next day and hit New York for for what we thought was only going to be three days. We decided on Thursday we would think about it. On Friday we bought our tickets and on Saturday we left for New York. Little did we know though that our three day trip was going to turn into 2 weeks. One of the best parts was that we were able to be so spontaneous about the trip, since Aaron was not working.
I was really excited for Aaron to meet my friend Naomi who I have known for 45 years and have had many adventures with, many of which I have told Aaron about. He would also get a chance to become more acquainted with my good friend Joey who he had met only briefly in New York 6 years ago. In addition he would be meeting many friends of mine who have been in and out of my life for the last 25 years. In all the time we have been together it is hard to believe he has only met two friends of mine.
One of the nice things about flying out of Dublin is you are able to go through immigration in Ireland rather than in the states. After landing we caught a cab and went directly to visit a favorite cousin of mine on the Upper East Side. When I lived in New York despite her being older we hung out together quite a bit taking each other to openings, concerts, parties, benefits, art exhibits and more. Like me, she always enjoyed people who were young at heart, which I am sure was one of the reasons she enjoyed being with my friends and I. I was excited for Aaron to meet her as I had often talked about her and she had been a big part of my life. It was a bittersweet visit though as she had a stroke since I last saw her three years ago and was not herself anymore. Sixty years go she had been one of New York’s original, “society party girl’s.” Her nights were filled of parties with some of the worlds biggest stars and she always had great stories to tell, entertaining multitudes of people. It warmed my heart when she told me how happy she was that she had the chance to meet my husband and how lucky she thought we both were.
After showering and visiting at my cousins we went a few hours early to the surprise party which was being held at my friends mother’s apartment also on the upper east side. Growing up I had spent so much time at the apartment it was like a second home. Aaron had a great time meeting Naomi’s mother who is a real character, We spent a load of time talking about our fun times, When we were younger, much younger she used to take us to one of the most famous nightclubs of the past, Studio 54, It was a real education for us kids, What we still laugh about the most today is how Tilly, Naomi’s mother would chase us around the club for quaaludes and cocaine. It was a different world back in the seventies and eighties. Another time a few years ago we were at Naomi’s lake house and we had enough mushrooms for three for us, Naomi, her son and myself. Unfortunately we did not have enough for Tilly who was 80 something. She was not very happy that she was stuck babysitting us, making sure none of us drown in the lake.
What I was most looking forward to was Aaron learning more about my life and who I was. The party was filed with people I had known for years so he was able to hear a lot of stories about all the shenanigans and trouble I go into and get a better idea of who I was and where I came from. When your from different countries and eras I think it helps so much to understand where the other person is coming from.
As I said it was a surprise party for Naomi. There were probably about 60 people there. We did not want to stand in front when people yelled surprise and overshadow other people who went to a lot of trouble to be there so we stood in back of the crowd. It was so sweet when she saw us she ran back and started to cry. Funnily enough she knew exactly who Aaron was from seeing so many pictures of him. The first thing she said was your coming home with me so cancel any reservations you have. Little did she know we hadn’t made any yet, we had been so busy.
After the party when we driving to her house with her son and Joey she said the minute she saw us she all she wanted to do was leave the party and be with us. It had been over three years since we had last seen each other. Covid had made so many things difficult. Thank God things are back to normal. Although Aaron and I had been up and drugged now for probably 36 hours I could tell everyone was going to get along great and it really warmed my heart.
I have no idea what time we got started the next day. A new Neil Diamond Musical was opening, A Beautiful Noise. There were no tickets available so Aaron and I were going to meet Naomi at the opening party afterwards, which would be attended by Neil, the cast, the producers and many of the who’s who of the theatre world. While we waited for the party to begin I was able to show Aaron New York at Xmas. He had never been in NY in the winter. He had a great time except he made the mistake of buying shoes that were too small. Not good for walking in NYC.
For a day now Naomi and Joey had been telling us there was no way they would let us leave on Tuesday. Aaron and I were having such good time we felt the same way except we had bought non refundable or changeable tickets. I told Naomi if she could change them without us getting charged we would stay. Anyone who knows Naomi, knows she has a certain way about her and they were changed at no charge. She also made me realize we should be going to my nephew’s wedding in Chicago the following week. Well our three day vacation just became a two week one.
For the next two days in New York all we basically did was hang. That’s one of the best things about good friends, just being able to lay around doing nothing except laughing, drinking, eating, talking and watching TV. It really felt like old times. After we left Naomi called and said we forgot to watch TV in her bed. Her bed is big enough for 5 people and has the added attraction of basically moving into whatever position you want it too with dual controls. It seems the only time we left the house now was when we needed food or to buy more underwear.
When Aaron and I married in one sense we knew each other better than so many other people since we spent about 5 months in a room with each other 24 hours a day and it was great. What I love now is that we are meeting each others friends and other important people in each other’s lives. Although we have told each other so many stories etc I think so much more is added when we can see each other interact with each other’s respective friends. Despite meeting each other in New York when Aaron was doing an internship for a summer he knew nothing about my life or how I lived, so it was especially nice for him to see a glimpse of it.