It was supposed to be a great adventure. It was supposed to be great fun. And it was all to begin with me heading off to my beloved NYC for a once-in-a-lifetime, forever dreamed of special invitation to a theater workshop featuring a host of Broadway luminaries.
My story begins with concealment, which in my eyes, is just a blink short of a lie. I didn’t tell anyone I was coming to town. The trip was on the proverbial “down low.” Never had I snuck home to NYC where I have family and friends I love to see. But this trip was tricky to schedule, sandwiched — matzo-ed? — between multiple Passover seders. It had to be a quickie. So, stealth seemed the efficient and only way to go. Shame on me!
The invitation came from Berkeley Repertory Theatre, where I once served on the board of trustees and now act as a sustaining advisor. As such, I along with others scored this glorious invitation to attend this workshop where a new musical production was being pitched to financial backers. The details of the show are not mine to share, but it’s exciting. It has, as they say in the biz — or at least I think they say — great legs.
The lead actor is multi-award winning (and handsome). The director is likewise multi-award winning and the entire list of “creatives,” as they say in the biz, is likewise stellar.
It’s long been on my bucket list to attend one of these workshops where I imagine the energy in the room is just out of this world. I mean these people are truly singing for their supper/show!
Also, let’s face it, I’m a Broadway groupie. The opportunity to mingle with a roomful of artistic greats just brings out the giggling, agog teenage fangirl in me!
And so, with barely a shrug to responsibilities — holiday meal planning needs, writing deadlines, and the need to curtail spending before an already scheduled budget-busting Broadway eight-show trip, I RSVP-ed. YES, YES, YES!!!
My frenzied preparations included getting a cool new haircut and my nails colored appropriately with OPI’s Big Apple Red. In addition, I — who never worries about clothes — spent days agonizing over my wardrobe. East Coast sophisticated suit vs. “trendy” wide-leg gray jeans with a colorful chunky sweater and funky jewelry?
And I fantasized.
Clearly, whatever outfit I chose, one of those Big-League Big Apple show backers was going to be smitten with middle-aged me!
Clearly, he would insist on wining and dining me at some oh, so chic eatery post-workshop.
Just as clearly, by dessert (preferably chocolate eclairs) he would propose taking me away from my hum-drum life in snow-packed, tumbleweed-riddled, culturally bereft Reno, Nevada, and insist on installing me in a lux, multi-story brownstone on the Upper East Side (preferably near the Metropolitan Museum of Art).
It was all supposed to happen.
Instead? Instead, the day before leaving I woke up to gripping, ripping stomach pains.
The rest was decidedly not Show Biz history.
I spent three days in bed, tended to lovingly by Handsome Hubby (HH). And when I felt better, there was a surprise. The doorbell rang. A package had arrived from NYC’s famed appetizer shop, Russ & Daughters. It was filled with brunch delights — lox, bagels, cream cheese and chocolate babka (cake). I hadn’t made it to NYC, but HH had brought a taste of my hometown to me.
This story isn’t musical. It isn’t Broadway-bound. It won’t win a Tony Award, but after all these years, I’ve still got stars in my eyes for my husband, one prize of a guy.
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