a shonda in High Falls
Saturday, July 30 2005
Gretchen and I attended a housewarming party in High Falls this afternoon. It was a big party, and there was plenty of wine flowing freely, but someone must have put a WASP in charge of the food because it quickly ran out, and by the time we arrived the spread consisted of cakes and nasty pans full of crumbs. "It's a shonda," Gretchen declared, having to reach for her Yiddish vocabulary. Had both residents of the house-to-be-warmed been WASPs it might have been expected, not a shonda, but one of them is Jewish.
The house had almost exactly the same floor plan as the place I used to live on Observatory Avenue in Charlottesville, though outside its gucamole-green asbestos siding was a big hilltop yard full of echinaceas and at least one massive White Ash tree.
At some point a goat living in a nearby yard heard all the party sounds and decided he wanted to come over. He broke out of his pen and went on something of a rampage, reportedly jumping up on the hood of a white Subaru and leaving four hoof dents in the thin sheet metal. Then he sent the the party's children scattering, repeatedly rearing up on his hind legs and threatening them with his 12 inch horns. Everybody, adults included, was running around like chickens with their heads cut off and only Gretchen and I had the cool heads and common sense necessary to catch the goat and lead him home (Gretchen happened to know where he lives). We closed the goat's gate tightly and cut him a bunch of foliage from a nearby rose bush and Sugar Maple so he'd be less tempted to immediately bust loose and resume his rampage.
After we left the party we took a circuitous drive to Rosendale along the lower slopes of the Shawangunk ridge. At one point a big healthy coyote crossed the road in front of us with nary a concern.
Having eaten little at the house warming party, we had dinner at the Cement Factory, where Gretchen happened to know the hostess. It's always good to have some connection with the restaurant staff at the place where you dine, though it's a political channel that's been mostly unavailable to me (and my better halves) since I left Charlottesville back in 1998. People in the age groups with which I socialize, you see, don't often work in the restaurant industry any more.
For linking purposes this article's URL is:feedback
previous | next