If you remember a few weeks back I was invited to attend the 80th Gala of the Sandy Bay Historical Society. While being a specially invited guest saved me the $20 ticket, it cost me $91 for a suitable outfit! I guess I don't mind. Hopefully someday, before it goes out of style, I shall be able to wear it again. Seriously, it's not super dressy or anything. A nice pair of dressy black slacks and a pretty, lightweight, wrap sweater with a satin collar and side tie. And I got to wear my four inch heels. It feels strange to be tall! No, there will be no photos. I HATE having my picture taken. Besides, photos just remind me of how old I'm getting and I refuse to believe it.
The Gala was from 5:30 - 8:30 in the Grand Cafe of the Emerson Inn. Yep, we party to the wee hours here in Rockport. Since it is on street parking only, I got there a bit early to be sure I could find a close space. I can't walk very far in four inch heels. I sat in my truck watching some of the first arrivals. Two older ladies, an elderly man with a walker, a lady with a cane hanging on to a bent over man. Then came the lady with the pinkish hair and the ruby red pantsuit. She was followed by a couple that I know, the wife was also sporting a walker! And I was making an appearance with no accessories! Oh boy, this was going to be interesting. I got up my nerve and ventured from my truck to the entrance of the Emerson Inn. At least now I knew that there would be someone that I knew in attendance.
The Grand Cafe of the Emerson is a tastefully decorated period dining area on the first floor of the inn. For the $20 ticket, we were to expect fancy hors d'oeuvres. It was a cash bar. I picked up the professionally printed program of the evening and entered the main room. The curator, who had invited me, gave me a once up and down lookover. I smiled at her and said, "Yes, I can get dressed up you know!" There was a middle aged man playing "old favorites" on the Steinway grand, a table set up as the bar, and a small table with crackers, cheese, raw veggies and dip. Certainly this wasn't the fancy stuff? I grabbed a minute plate and loaded it with two cubes of cheese, two strawberries, a slice of cucumber, a sliver of red pepper and one cracker. It was full. I headed to an adjoining room where round tables invited my already tired, heeled feet. The couple I knew were already seated and I joined them. And to my relief, more food was brought around, on teeny tiny trays, by the waitstaff. The first tray had a dozen stuffed mushrooms. I HATE mushrooms. I just don't see the attraction of eating rubbery fungus, sorry. Still starving I anxiously awaited the next offering. As the little tray was presented to our table my heart sank. A dozen miniature open-faced sandwiches featuring some kind of ground up sausage. Nope, not for me. It's sausage-y and I don't do questionable cold meats.
Still starving at 6:30.
Another little tray was graciously brought to our table. This time it was microscopic quiche tartlets. By then I was desperate. How dangerous could a mini quiche be? I took one. Only one because, presented as they were, it would have looked hoggish to take more than that. My hungry stomach was nearly crawling up my throat for that quiche. With good etiquette in mind, I took just a small bite.
And nearly gagged.
Anchovy! Eeeeewwwwww, yuck.
And there I was with 2/3 a tartlet left in my hand, no plate, no napkin, and nowhere for it to go but in my mouth. I took a deep breath and held it, popped the rest in my mouth and hurriedly chewed and swallowed before exhaling. Gone.
But that flavor...
I had to get to the cash bar for something to wash the abhorrent taste down. A glass of wine sounded good, but I'd had next to nothing to eat since noontime so I didn't dare. I opted for my easy, non-alcoholic stand by, sparkling water with lime. It was served with lots of ice and an almond sized piece of lime in a small wine glass. It cost $2.75! When I returned to my table, the lady sitting next to me eyed my drink and inquired what it was. After I told her she asked, "Did you have to pay for that?" When I responded, yes, she told me her glass of white wine had cost her $6.00!
There was a little program presented by an ancestor of the founder of the historical society (twas founded 80 years ago, thus the gala) and a short talk by the curator (my host). We chatted at the table for a bit more and then called it an evening. As I was making my exit, I ran into another acquaintance. She was having a good time standing next to the piano singing. She grabbed me by the arm and pulled me over. I was trapped. She wrapped her arm around my shoulder and indicated that I should sing along with her. I made good fun of it without actually participating! Then I grabbed my free candy sampler donated by Tuck's Candy and made my escape.
And so went the 80th Gala! In all honesty, I did have fun. Out for a bit socializing is nearly always fun. But, am I ever glad that I was a guest and didn't have to pay the $20! The historical society did a spectacular job with the invitations, printed programs, speakers and the exhibit (forgot to mention that they had a mini history of the historical society table). Even the piano player was good. I was less than impressed with the Emerson Inn's catering.
postscript - The candy was given to my mom. I'm not a big fan of candy. You may call me weird.