Monday, July 23, 2007

Blew It!

I blew it on my Friday evening out, where "it" equals $55 (well, okay, $15 of that was covering a friend's drinks, and she'll pay me back, though probably in drinks).

I did fine on the food. It was the booze. Need I say more? (If so, I will invoke a magical pair of words: frozen margaritas.)

But it was a really lovely evening. I got some grad school advice from a friend who just finished a one-year Masters and is starting his (philosophy) PhD in the fall: we talked housing, stipends, and the GRE. And in a particularly lovely surprise, a friend dropped in whom I wasn't expecting to see for another full calendar year--she's in the Peace Corps in Swaziland, but home to attend to her mother's illness. That's a sad reason to get a chance to see her, but I was glad nonetheless that I could.

We pooled our knowledge about an absent friend's relationship status (conclusion: he and his lovely girlfriend are no longer together). The academics, Peace Corps member & workin' folks razzed our doctor- and lawyer-to-be about having to pay for our dinners in future. The law student promised that if she gets a firm job, she'll buy dinner for everyone. The med student told us about his first cadaver. K showed up late in the evening, and it warmed the cockles of my little heart to see how well he gets along with all my friends. They were psyched to see him, and there was a point at which he was explaining his volunteer work and pulling the big fat biography he's reading out of his bag to get to his computer and show us the graphic he made at work--I all but swooned.

I had a cigarette out on Amsterdam with the Peace Corps friend--she said she has to drive her mom to the hospital to see her doctor, because her mom can't drive herself. It's not the entree prices--this is how you know we're growing up.

Bottom line: I can cover the cost, and I had a great time, so it's no big deal to do this every now and again (though it would help if I were more realistic in my cost projections: I need to know that I'm not going to end the evening having spent under $20). Sure, I could have--and would have liked to have--saved another $25 this pay period, but how often do I get a chance to sit down with this great bunch of kids? Not that often. Once or twice a year--though this time, it looked like everyone was going to be in town for awhile, so we may do it again in just a couple of weeks.

Don't worry: we agreed on a cheaper restaurant for next time.


gildedbutterfly said...

That's definitely worth it. If it was something that happened several times a week, that's one thing. But getting together with friends you haven't seen in a long time is definitely worth the money.

Glad you had a great time! I'm sorry to hear about your friend's mom. I remember the first time one of my friend's parents retired. We were all like, "Whoa. We're old enough to have retired parents?!"

MS said...

Sounds like there's no reason for regrets. Glad you had fun and got to catch up with everyone. One benefit watching your day-to-day finances is having the ability to do things like this without worrying about it.

mapgirl said...

I was at a dinner like this about 5 years after graduation. A few of us had bought homes and one of them says, "I guess we aren't in college anymore once we start talking about mortgage deductions at dinner."

Still makes me chuckle when I think about it. I'm glad you had a good time.

krystalatwork said...

Sounds like a great time, and a wonderful reunion with your friends. Nights like that are worth it sometimes!

Lenny Tumbarello said...

Great Going.

When we are focused on our finances too hard for too long and do not treat ourselves once in a while, we start asking what's life for?

You still gotta live and have fun - and wasn't it fabulous doing it as a treat to yourself?

Everybody else is doing it all the time and charging it on the PLASTIC !


Dennis said...

I hate buying alcohol in NYC, its so freakin expensive! $7 for a bottle of beer? No way... I prefer my Florida prices.

SF Money Musings said...

It's not about the cost like you said but about the time with friends. Money can't buy a fabulous time with old friends. And that's money worth spending.