Dan Bridge Shabbaton

Sunday, August 06, 2006

The End

It's August 6, 2006 and I've been back at work a week. If this week is any indication, I might be doing a bit more than 1/4 time. Will Berkovitz and Lelach Rave had a second baby boy - his name is Idan Shalom (era of peace). The bris was Friday morning, so I left a bit late for my Seattle to Vancouver bike ride. In order to catch up with the group, I cheated and got a ride to Mt. Vernon (75 miles of the 180 mile trip).

Now I face the summer-camp-challenge of figuring out how to bring the lessons of my sabbatical home to real life in Seattle. I learned to better face what life brings my way without trying to control it all. I learned how to deal with so many different kinds of people. I learned how take a few more risks. I learned how to make coffee. I hope that I'll be able to bring all of these lessons into my life instead of leaving them in my sabbatical travels.

I look forward to connecting with old and new friends.

Thanks for reading this.

Dan Bridge

Sunday, July 30, 2006

My sabbatical's ALMOST over...

I can't believe it, but my sabbatical officially ends tomorrow. I'm going to be back in Seattle on Monday and should be starting my part-time Hillel duties then. Seattle's Jewish Community has been living through a nightmare - a hostage and murder situation at the Jewish Federation building. Pam Waechter, a longtime Seattle resident, a wonderful woman, and a Federation employee, was killed. Five others were wounded. Things like this usually happen somewhere else. This time it happened right here. Pam will be missed.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Dinner at the Sunset Grill with (l to r) Michele, Dan, Merrily, Anson, Sim, and Stan

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Sunset on Shelter Island

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Back in New York

I arrived on Thursday night. Friday was at B'nei Jeshurun and dinner with Sim. Her sons, Asaf and Eliav, came over for dessert. The next day we had dinner with Irwin and Annie Zeplowitz in town. Sunday was a LONG walk to the Whitney Museum through Central Park - the Whitney has a 75 year exhibition from the permanent collection - lots of Edward Hopper - then dinner at a great Mexican restaurant (Rosa Mexicana) and another LONG walk home (from 1st and 56th to 96th and Broadway). On Monday, I got on Sim's bike and headed down the bike path in Riverside Park (on the west side of the Island, on the Hudson River). It took me about 45 minutes to get to Battery Park (at the south end of Manhattan) and back up to Sim's office at 26th and 6th Avenue. I spent the afternoon painting her office while she worked. The hardware store mixed it wrong and it turned out to be a pretty hideous green. In addition, two walls didn't take the paint well and I have to return for a third coat (I'll have to buy more paint) on Friday. In the middle of the project, the airconditioning went out in her office...

On the way home, we raced. I took the bike up the wrong way on the one-way cross-town streets and she took the subway. I arrived sweaty and tired... about five minutes after she got home.

Tuesday morning, we went out for coffee at Goergia's on 89th and Broadway. Then we picked up a rental car and drove out to Amagansett in the Hamptons. We're staying a couple of nights with Stan and Michele Rosen (and Penny, their dog) in a house they rent every year. Anson and Merrily Laytner are here too. We had dinner at a place called Sunset Grill on Shelter Island - you have to take a 6-car ferry over to it.

This morning, Stan and I went for a beautiful bike ride - I'm TRYING to get in some saddle time since I've committed to doing the RSVP (Seattle to Vancouver, BC) on August 4-5. I think I'm gonna be really sorry and sore at the same time! We're swimming, sunning, talking, and doing computer stuff...

The view from Simcha's stairwell on 96th and Broadway

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Monday, July 17, 2006

Zach took this at sunset

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Guest bath

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My bedroom and bathroom

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The secret door to Zach's room

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Zach's room/den

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Jake's room/my office

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My library and view

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The living room and kitchen

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Thursday, July 13, 2006

Back home and on the mend

Our dinner at the Inn at Langley was quite an event - it took three hours! There were seven courses and six wine pairings. In between the last three courses, my eyes were rolling back into my head because of both need for sleep and too many 1/2 glasses of the wine (we're both alcohol lightweights). The first course was Rainier cherry stuffed with foie gras on a bed of Sauterne jelly - innovative, but since I'm a vegetarian, mine was simply a Rainier cherry in the jelly... and I mean ONE cherry. This is a course?

Sim left on Sunday morning and I've been sick for the past five days. Brad Harris, my internist, prescribed both antibiotics and antiviral medicines. Evidently, a cold sore got out of hand (weird immune system) and made my entire mouth swell up. After a full thirty six hours straight of sleep, I've been making a slow recovery. I ran an errand yesterday. Tonight, my mouth had healed enough to allow me had my first non-egg/pancake/yougurt meal. It was paid for by Rick and Susie Block, who are staying in Jake's room while they're here on family business from Cleveland. The news is that they had an automobile accident tonight - they wound up messing up a brand new rental car and receiving some pretty ugly bruises from the airbags, but they're still in good spirits. This infection is wreaking havoc with my bicycle training - I'm supposed to be riding the RSVP (Seattle to Vancouver ride) in three weeks and I've only had about 2.5 hours of actual saddle time during the past year! Uh-oh... it's weird that I waited to come home from my sabbatical to get sick. Hmmm...

Shabbat dinner with Jake (Zach will join after work), Roxie, her mom, Jan, and the Blocks will follow a day of cooking with Jake - he's planned out an entire menu of new dishes. Shabbat shalom.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Fort Casey on Whidbey Island

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Jake likes a cool dog - Zelli in shades

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Flowers in the Pike Place Market

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Sim arrives!

It took three days to unpack the whole place with lots of help from Jake and some shlepping help from Zach. I gave away another 20 boxes of stuff - clothes, books, tsachkes. Everything fits well and there's still empty storage space. I'll try to put photos up.

Sim arrived on the 29th and we've been going non-stop ever since. Lunch with Jake and his girlfriend, Roxie Kritzer, Friday night dinner with Paul, Bim, my niece Katie, Philip Yoo, Roxie, Jake, and Zach, a weekend on Whidbey Island with my family (parents, Jon, Bobbe, niece Becky) with a night at the Inn at Langley. We had a seven course gourmet dinner there with a six-glass wine-tasting side. The first course was a cherry with foie gras on a bed of Sauterne wine jelly... emphasize a cherry... and because I'm a vegetarian, my first course was ONE Rainer cherry standing in a small pool of jelly on a very pretty plate... it was good food, but because of the wines, we almost fell asleep between courses during the three HOUR meal!

The 4th was spent preparing for about 100 guests - about 80 were still here for the fireworks, including lots of Jake and Zach and Katie's friends. It was quite a happening - I'm pretty exhausted - now to work out and then clean up!

Sim at the Pike Place Market in Seattle

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Lee and Judy Snitzer at the 50's car show in St. Paul

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Monday, June 26, 2006

St. Louis Park

After a long walk around the neighborhood, we went into Dinkeytown (really!) to check out a bar that was having salsa dancing. It was quite the scene and we were the only grey-hairs in the crowd. The next morning, Lee and Judy took me to the Fairgrounds for a 50's and 60's car show - pretty amazing automobiles - my little red Valiant paled in comparison to moset.

The trip home was uneventful and Jake picked me up at SeaTac Airport. We went up to my new condo - it looks pretty sterile (nothing up and around), but it's spectacularly beautiful. After all the unpacking, I think I'll be happy here. The bedroom is FULL of boxes - I stayed up until 0315 unpacking and got up to start again at 0730 - Ralph and the construction guys arrived at 0800.