It was good to get back to Dumont in the summer time. I rode my bike around Haworth pond, making a connection to childhood. Dad and I had a pretty good outing to Shepherd Lake, although I was still sore he got rid of the Christero. We celebrated my birthday at the Farmhouse place in Cresskill, and I got to visit Kikin and her family at the shore in Brick.
Daniel and Eddy Jr. took me to the beach with some surfboards and we got a bit sunburned! Goddamn Jersey shore. I remember speeding down here in the family Ford Taurus after finally graduating from Bergen Catholic in 1991. The extended family was gathered in the backyard to celebrate my graduation but I only wanted to get the hell out of there and drop acid at Seaside Heights with the Dumont High School gang. I am not in touch with any of those blokes now, but my Columbia years yielded some very meaningful, enduring friendships. Actually, come to think of it, as I get older, the friendships I make are better suited to endurance. Progress!
Nicole Brancato had a party at her place with Greg in Astoria, it was good to be back in the old neighborhood, and I’m sad I didn’t go to visit Mirella at my old place. Maybe this year. Geoff Burleson was there at the party, and we had a good time having a bit of an Arcidosso reunion, and I enjoyed the Satchmo humor in their bathroom. I also got to meet up with Alex Whitney; we took a stroll through the Chelsea Market.
I met up with Allen Sisk at his new West End Avenue Apartment. Allen should’ve been a character in a Woody Allen film. Quintessential New Yorker, sitting with him at the Chesshouse in Central Park and talking about music and women were some of my best times in New York. I met up with everyone I wanted to – Ilian and Sayan, Michael Leva, and Sarah. It had been 4 years since Sarah and I broke up. I mentioned nothing of Dada, or anyone else, and got no indication from her that she had dated anyone else. Her poker face suits her well as a corporate attorney, but I’d like some assurance that she has some romance in her life.
I was planning on still going to Japan and Dali, where Kirk Kenney was organizing a world music program. Lulu was going as well, and she got me in touch with Kate Smith, another Compass World Arts organizer, who was planning a classical event upon our return to Beijing in September. She needed a pianist for a bunch of French repertoire which interested me, so I accepted, and immediately needed a place to practice on a proper piano, as it was inconvenient to go into NY all the time and use the practice rooms at Hunter College, and my old piano at home, bless it’s yellowed little keys, was not up to snuff. Riding around on my bike up near Old Tappan, not far from Joann’s place, I passed a church called Prince of Peace Lutheran. I decided to check it out for piano potential, and sure enough there was a baby grand in great tune. I talked to Father John and explained my needs, and offered to donate a little something to the church fund, but he just smiled and said, “We’d be please to have you, just gimme a call when you plan on coming.” So I got a head start on the Caplet and Roussel and Caplet.