I did venture out last night for that midnight fund-raising cocktail reception but "chickened out" once I got up to the restaurant. Now, the reception was to follow the "last ever" big fancy dinner that Ambria was doing, and when I got there (about 11:45pm), the dinner was still going, if winding down. I did not recognize anybody in the bar, the waiting area, what I could see of the dining room, or out in the lobby. My main purpose for going was to hopefully re-connect with folks I'd known in the food industry to "network" for possible job leads. Being that there were no faces that were familiar put me in a situation where I was going to have to try doing the sort of "happy schmoozing" that I don't do well, basically chatting up strangers (and the vibe I was getting was that most of the folks here were there because they'd been regulars at Ambria, and not being "industry" types there for the benefit, for the foundation of a recently deceased chef of my acquaintance). Add having to spend $50 for the privilege of being in that situation and having to pass up glass after glass of champagne, I opted, after about 10 minutes of "reading" the room, to just go home.
Again, the "short version" is that I chickened out ... the details above are pretty much just "justification".
I took the 36 bus up and back (my timing was good on that, despite it being around midnight, I didn't have to wait more than like 5 minutes at either bus stop!), having decided that the rental car was likely best left in the parking space that I'd (nearly miraculously) found last night. I am a bit worried about the car being where I left it this morning (it needs to be back by 9am), as it's in an area which usually tows in the morning, but I'm hoping (and The Wife assures me this is the case) that they don't tow those zones on Sunday morning. It would, however, be a near perfect SNAFU addition to the rest of the insanity of the weekend for me to have to go ransom the car from the city (for $$$) before returning it (no doubt late for more $$$) to the rental place.
Stay tuned ...