Sunday, March 12, 2006

Evening at Nick's

I graduated in 1979 from Bedford Road Collegiate Institute in Saskatoon, SK. As it happens I lost touch with a lot of classmates. Yet since our twenty-five year reunion in August 2004 I am making an attempt to gather those whom share Calgary or Alberta as their home to have occasional dinners so we can stay in touch. There are about ten of us living in the immediate area. Last November Six of us met at a restaurant in town. called Pescatore's.

I have assumed to keep everyone in contact thus becoming the social secretary. It took some work the last time to select a date when everyone could agree. In the future I will announce a place, date and time to meet. I'll show up, and hopefully others will too. No pressure on anyone to attend. Not to sound selfish yet at the very least I will have picked a restaurant I have wanted to eat at for a while and have a good meal with good company. The next locaton will be something new.

A week ago I sent an email invitation to the group to join me on Saturday night at Nick's Steak House on 14th Street (across from McMahon Stadium). The weather was a bit blustery, as snow whipped about when I pulled into the parking lot. Ther were a lot of cars. "Who knew" how busy it would be. I surely hadn't expected it. At the door people were lined up waiting to get in. Inside every table was packed. People were eating and having a good time cast in this amber glow from numerous carriage lamps. I had heard that the place had recently gone non-smoking. Sure enough, a number of the smoking crowd were congregating by the front entrance like grapes hanging on the stem. Eyes were shifting between other shivering smokers taking drags on their coffin nails and the woman calling guests to their tables. You could see her barely through the throng packed near the maitre d' desk. I was in that space between the outer doors and her post. What better place to be to await others who might attend?

Who would attend? I had called Jay to confirm. I wanted to book a table earlier in the day. The restaurant said they wouldn't reserve for groups less than ten people. I had no assurance so I went with my hunch to just show up. By looking at the crowd I question whether I had made the right decision. What if we all arrive and there is no space? After a twenty minute wait, Jay arrived, and our table was called. My satisfaction was certainly delivered with my friend's arrival. I would have felt nakedly foolish sitting at a table for four and being the only one.

We caught up. Jay had been to Belize for Christmas. I hadn't known that he was a certified SCUBA diver. He regaled me with his tales of dives taken on the reef and off of the coast.

I kept my eye on the door in case any of the other grads made an appearance at the front of the restaurant. I have to apologize to Jay. I am sure my alertness for their entrance was annoying. Eventually we had our meal. I like my steaks medium-rare. My friend though that my steak looked a little underdone. I admit now in places it was. But I was satisfied that it was tasty and complimented the two rye and sevens I had eariler. Let me assert that I usually don't drink. So if you read this don't think I am a lush.

Dessert was certainly out of the question. Due to the noise of the crowd I wanted to escape to some place more suitable for conversation. We agreed to meet up at a Tim Horton's over by the Foothills Hospital. A coffee and donut later we resumed our discussion.

Due to the fact its getting late as write this iwil just wind up by saying it was a good evening. I hope you'll join me in the near future. Hasta Leugo.

No comments: