I had an experience last week that was so outside my comfort zone, and yet so rewarding, that I just have to share it.My friend Bridget decided to throw herself a 50th birthday party. It was a party unlike any I had ever attended. There was no booze and no official birthday cake, yet it was still one of the best celebrations I have ever experienced.
She warned me beforehand that it was going to be a touchy-feely-spiritual kind of gathering for her women friends. This type of event is definitely not my thing, but I love her, so I figured I’d suck it up and go.
Not being much of a sharer or “go Goddess” kind of gal, I was on the nervous and uncomfortable side when I pulled up to the party. Added to that, I was about 10 minutes late. As the type of person who shows up 15 minutes before anything and then sits in the car and waits to be sure to be on time, I was crabby and anxious about looking disrespectful to my friend.
I walked in to a room full of about 30 women, all wearing name tags and seated in folding chairs (crap, how is it possible that they weren’t still mingling?) and listening to an inspirational speaker talk about her experiences in Alcoholics Anonymous and in the church.
“Oh Lord,” I thought. “This is going to be a looooong night.”
You know what? It wasn’t.
The more this woman spoke about her experiences and overcoming her challenges, the more interested I became in really listening to her positive outlook. By the time the birthday party was over four hours later (and after I, gulp, “shared” during a few of the exercises), I felt uplifted. I came in with a foul mood and I left with a soaring spirit.
I’m glad I went and I’m sure that it was an experience no woman in that room will ever forget. Thanks to Bridget LeRoy for giving me such a wonderful gift on her birthday!
I’ve got more exciting and uplifting news to share, and that’s a heartfelt congratulations to Susan Galardi and Beth Troy, who officially announced their engagement this week. I’ve been bursting to share this news ever since Susan told me when we ran into each other at Cromer’s not too long ago. Yay for you both. Sending you many blessings.
On the subject of equality, thanks to Leigh Davis Honn of Boston, Massachusetts, and the “States of Mind Worldwide-Declare the State in which you Live, Work & Play,” for donating 200 Equality shirts to the new GLBT Center at Old Whalers’ Church here in Sag Harbor. The shirts will be sold to help raise funds for the center. That piece of good news came from Bridget, whose son, Joel, is very involved in advocacy, so thanks to her for that, too. Keep up to date by visiting www.liglbtcenter.org.
Speaking of the church, the Historical Committee of the Old Whalers’ Church will host its second “Discover Old Whalers’ Day” on Sunday, October 13, beginning at noon. All are welcome to the free event, which will include information about the missing steeple, a demonstration of the 1845 Erben pipe organ, an optional climb to the top of the tower for a bird’s-eye view of Sag Harbor and lots of fun community fellowship. To learn more, visit www.oldwhalerschurch.org.
Also this weekend, The Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce will host its annual Columbus Day weekend Sidewalk Sale and Arts & Crafts Fair on Saturday and Sunday, October 12 and 13, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Marine Park, Main Street and Bay Street. There will be all sorts of great fare for sale. For additional information, visit www.sagharborchamber.com.
Don’t forget, the John Jermain Memorial Library “One for the Books” cocktail parties start this weekend, too. The fundraising events, which will be held on Saturday, October 12, and Saturday, October 19, starting at 6 p.m., will feature local authors (E.L. Doctorow, David Margolick, Suzanne McNear, David Kastan, Tom Clavin, Joe Pintauro, Eric Fischl, Mac Griswold and Alan Furst) and will be held at several Sag Harbor-area homes. Tickets are $100 each.
Need to make reservations? Call 725-0049, ext. 244, email Gail Slevin at email@example.com or visit www.johnjermain.org.
Last, a little free treat will be offered at Salon Xavier on Saturday, October 12, starting at 10 a.m. Sign up for Free Hair Scalp Treatment Day by calling the salon at 725-6400. The treatment is free but you’ll need to pay for the blow-dry, which comes with the process. For more information about registering, contact Irena or Sam at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.salonxavier.com.