Hey, J. Alfred,* What Are You Doin' This Summer?
So I was flattered that she invited me to this and was drawn to the idea of going -- I've been to Madison twice, when another friend lived there back in the '80s, and loved it -- but I wondered for the longest time if it would be . . . weird to go all that way this time. Would I be the only out-of-towner at the party? Would people think we were closer than we were? Or would they wonder why this person she barely knew had come all this way? Could I afford it? Would I regret it?
Much like the first time I went to a college reunion -- with none of my friends planning to attend and no history as a "reunion person," I rented a car, drove up, and had a memorable time -- something was telling me to go. So as I've written here before on other matters, I decided there was a reason the idea was pulling at me and decided to go. I had some credit-card miles I'd never used, and I found a room in relatively reasonable and charming-looking bed-and-breakfast (I couldn't see going all that way and staying in a Motel 6; too depressing). I plan to have some ice cream here. Walk along the lakes. Maybe hear some music. And, of course, go to the party. She says she's thrilled that I'm coming.
* . . . And indeed there will be time
To wonder, "Do I dare?" and, "Do I dare?"
Time to turn back and descend the stair,
With a bald spot in the middle of my hair --
[They will say: "How his hair is growing thin!"]
My morning coat, my collar mounting firmly to the chin,
My necktie rich and modest, but asserted by a simple pin --
[They will say: "But how his arms and legs are thin!"]
Do I dare
Disturb the universe?
In a minute there is time
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. . . .