Gods, it’s lovely being…

Gods, it's lovely being at Alex's place in New Jersey. The hot, humid weather broke a few days ago, and it's just been so very beautiful here. Yesterday I arrived around 3-ish and we promptly went to the beach. Stayed 'til almost 6, and I was so happy and relaxed by the end of it. If I lived here, I'd go to the beach every summer afternoon, I think. Just soaking up sun and salt water -- I feel healthier and happier after only a day.

In the evening, we went grocery shopping for the workshop -- breakfasts, lunches, and one dinner! I made Alex buy the staples that he really should've had in the house to begin with (he's a bit under-furnished...). I bought the rest, which came to about $180; the ingredients for Saturday night's curry dinner came to about $80, bringing the total to $260. (It would've been less, but we're having some seafood which jacked up the price.) I tell you this in case you decide to have a weekend's worth of food for 13-15 people. :-) I think we'll need to run out tomorrow morning and get some more, though -- I forgot a few things, and a few more have occurred to me. Fresh bagels would be nice, and flowers for the table; I also somehow managed to buy fat-free half-and-half; I'm not a coffee drinker, but I'm sure that can't be right. I accidentally put it in my tea this morning, thinking it was fat-free milk; it wasn't bad, oddly enough. But still. We may need to restock some thing Sunday morning too -- it's always a little hard to tell what people will eat. Will this group be big fruit-eaters? Or are they total cheese or meat-heads? Impossible to tell right now; we'll see what needs to be restocked. Still, I think it'll easily come under the $360 total it ought to ($40/person, 9 people) for me not to take a loss, which is comforting. It helps that Alex offered to buy Chinese food for anyone who comes in early enough for dinner tonight. Nice Alex. :-) I like having patrons of the arts around...

If I do this again, I suspect I'll charge a bit more. It'd be nice to have my airfare covered too, which another $25/person should do. I might also charge for my administrative time; if we count all that...well, it'd probably be too much. But since this is fun too, and good for me, and the magazine, we can give people a discount. My thought right now is that next year, if it happens again, it'll be somewhere between $70 and $100 for the weekend. Feel free to give me your opinion on that -- irrespective of whether you'd be interested in attending or not. :-)

Hey -- our first participant just arrived! Excellent. I'm going to go be a host now...and then I have to quick finish typing up critiques so I can e-mail them to Alex and he can print them out from work... Fun fun fun!

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