Tuesday, June 9, 2009
the open seas
Because I am a high profile blogger and have such sway with the public, I was invited on a hospitality cruise last night.
At least, that's what I like to think. It was hard to keep up the dream, what with all the people coming up and asking who I was and why I was there and all. Fortunately that didn't happen until I had my Courtesy Bundle, full of spiffy coupons like free ferry service to Nantucket.
I was there as the guest of my friend Cat. Cat is a radio personality. Whenever I introduce her to someone, they say "oh, you're THAT Cat" as soon as she starts talking. She was invited because everyone loves her and the cruise in question (Hy-Line Cruises) sponsors her radio show. They are smart to do so, since hers is one of the only non-NPR shows people I know tune into.
But enough about Cat.
Hy-Line, at Cat's request, printed my very own name tag. Since she is music-related, she had them put my music-related employer as my company. This usually gets me a lot of attention - like if I worked for MTV or was Steven Tyler's personal secretary. I felt it best to cover my name tag with my lapel - since I planned on eating everything offered and didn't want to give my employer a bad name.
I am always looking at these cruises and wondering how you get on one. It was the weirdest thing in the world to stand on the ship, looking at the people who were wondering how to get on. It was also, I'm sorry to say, as fun as it looks from the shore. I like it when I get to experience things that are out of my usual circle and decide that they are not so great after all. Like when you see a house you'd love to live in and then find it's dark and damp inside.
On the ship they had two open bars - one of which (the crowded one) was serving Cape Cod Beer. I don't drink beer, but I do know that you're at an A-list party when there's Cape Cod Beer.
They also had people walking around offering food. I love a party where I can go sit in a corner and watch the food come to me. I do this until something especially delicious goes by, and then I stalk the server.
It's a wonder I don't get invited to more of these things.
Once the ship left the harbor, we moved downstairs - closer to the ice cream and out of the wind. We sat by the window and watched the sky turn pink. We watched the lights come up on shore and pointed to the general vicinity of the Kennedy compound. There were petite fours being passed around, so we couldn't be bothered with paying close attention to exact locations.
It seems we missed some dancing. Instead of dancing, we talked about the local music scene. We talked about Chris Trapper, who was on Cat's show last Sunday. We talked about Will Dailey, who was scheduled to be on Cat's show when he comes to play at the Beachcomber. He had to cancel because he'll be in L.A., with Craig Ferguson.
It seems I linked everything but the personal pronouns in that paragraph.
We also talked about how this Exciting! New! Economy! is forcing/encouraging people back into multi-generational living. We're seeing a lot of consolidated housing - friends moving in with friends, families moving in with families. While in general I want to kick the economy in the shins, I am grateful for small blessings. If you poke the human spirit with a sharp stick long enough, eventually you will find yourself holding a broken stick.
All too soon, the lights of the harbor reappeared and it was time to go home. Cat waited for me to unlock my car, while I explained that Chris had microphones in the back seat so he asked me to lock it. The car does not like to be locked - or rather, it does not like to be unlocked. The process of struggling with my locks reminded me that I live in a place with chickens and upstairs neighbors and unlocked cars.
Sometimes when I drive up to my house in the evening, with all the lights on inside, it strikes me as particularly beautiful. I see my friends in the upstairs window. I see my family in the downstairs window. And I wonder how I was lucky enough to get invited to this party.
(That's a Hy-Line ship up there, but I don't think it's the one we were on.)