Call Me Anything But Don’t Call Me Late For Dinner

Call Me Anything But Don’t Call Me Late For Dinner

My mom used this expression. She would say it before dinner but at various other times too. No one wants to be late for dinner. How about early for dinner? A day early for dinner.

This is a short blog about how an embarrassing moment turned into a perfect evening. (Insert hand in face emoji.) This blog also replaces the thank-you note you send after getting invited to a friend’s house for dinner. I’m not even changing names.

Saying the Stridicks are gracious people would be an understatement. Because of work schedule restrictions dinner plans got delayed. Most noteworthy, it felt good to be pursued to be dinner company in someone’s home. Finally, plans were made.

Translation is risky in digital communication. Late Thursday evening my wife sent a message inquiring if we were still on for dinner tomorrow night. Janice did not read the text until the next morning and messaged back, “yes see you tomorrow at 6:30.” See where this is going?

ytttttttttttttt6errrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr  (sentence added by Eli the kitten.)

Like a kitten waiting for his favorite food, I was looking forward to dinner and seeing Janice’s vast collection of her mothers watercolor artwork. And some good company. And cheesecake.

At the height of the season in Cape May, locals and second home owners blend into the sea of humanity. We almost disappear in the crowd. Dinner at the end of the day with friends is a nice reward.  Slugging through a couple dozen check-out and turnovers was easier with the goal in sight.

Honey we can’t be late for dinner

Wine was bought. Cheesecake picked up. We headed down the street leaning into the gale force wind blowing in from the south-west. The burnt orange leaves flipped wildly in the wind as we walked up the sidewalk. We would not be late for dinner.

Paul and Janice greeted us at the door with a peculiar look. They were expecting is “tomorrow at 6:30.” Remember the texting? We were not late for dinner, we were a day early!!! OMG!!!

Paul and Janice had just arrived from Merchantville. “Oh, but you have cheesecake,” Paul noticed. Unfortunately my schedule would not permit a re-do on Saturday. Paul and Janice were not deterred. A potentially embarrassing moment was quickly rescued and turned into a perfect evening.

Out came the egg-plant which was soon on the grill. A portabella casserole was stirring on the stove. Humus was in the crock with crackers and the wine was opened. Our vegan neighbors had prepared the most amazing meal.

We laughed, we ate and we sipped wine. We discussed Janice’s moms legacy and enjoyed gazing at her artwork. As a result of Janice and Paul’s hospitality and generosity, Friday night turned into the perfect evening. Despite the fact we were 24 hours early for dinner.

Thank you Janice and Paul.












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  1. Ben Miller
    October 22, 2018 / 4:27 pm

    Sounds like a very nice evening. God surely does have a sense of humor and I’ve found that those who are willing to go along with the unpredictability and sheer lunacy (at times) of life are often the happiest.

  2. October 22, 2018 / 6:01 pm

    You are so welcome, John — it was our pleasure! We had a blast 🙂

    I’ll be interested if you can figure out the location of that mystery painting (above) which Alice titled “From the High Porch” . . . Many agree it seems to include the rear view of the Alcott, but . . . which high porch?

    Among my habits as a cook, along with not following recipes, is that I like to double the good ones. Luckily you arrived when I’d doubled a favorite to bring along (phew!). Also, you inspired Paul to take it to a new level with the addition of grilled eggplant. And then there was the cheesecake . . . Oh my.