6 Sep 2012
Tonight I grilled some corn and poblano peppers, mixed them with tomatoes and cheese, and had taken just two bites when my phone rang. It was Eric, and he asked me two questions: Are you home? Have you eaten dinner? These were the happiest two questions he could have asked me, because I knew he was supposed to be having dinner with his group at the Athenaeum. Sure enough, they had some empty seats, and he was calling to ask me to come and join them. I love the Ath, and I had never been there for dinner, so I put my dinner in the fridge, scraped the rest of the peach sorbet out of the ice cream maker and into the freezer, and headed over. The food was, as it always is, sumptuous, but what was even better was that the dinner was in library. The library. It was just stunning.
I am sure I have written about the Ath before, but it’s the club that Caltech built so that Einstein and his colleagues could have a nice place to eat and discuss their work. Eric is a member, so I get to go with him sometimes, and it’s just wonderful. The food is spectacular, the building is full of grandeur, and it’s marvelous to feel close to scientific history (which is always still unfolding at all the tables around you).
Eric’s colleagues are wonderful people, and there is always lots of laughter at these dinners. I’m so grateful that I was able to go, and the fact that it was a surprise made it all the more sweet. This definitely qualifies as everyday magic.