Yesterday, PJ and I got back from our annual trip to New York City. As usual, we had a great time, even though the trip was a little different than in the past.

This year I spent a significant part of the trip working rather than being a tourist. While PJ visited the sites (and caught up with an old friend), I met with a handful of my college’s alumni. Partly this was for development purposes, but it was also part of a larger effort to reconnect my college with its alumni. So, whenever I travel this year I’m trying to combine it with lunches, dinners, breakfasts, or coffees with alumni. Since I don’t actually have an official travel budget, I’m having to pay for some of the travel myself, which means that I’m trying to combine it with trips we already take or with places that I don’t mind going. Like New York!

The development stuff went well enough. You never know exactly how all that’s going to go in advance. I learned a lot of good stuff — not all of it pleasant — but all of it helpful in doing my job.

The only downside to the alumni meetings was that it left me little time for sightseeing. For the first time since we started visiting New York, I didn’t see any museums. But we did see some shows. We arrived in the city on Tuesday. That night we saw A Little Night Music with Bernadette Peters and Elaine Stritch. On Wednesday we didn’t see any shows; instead, PJ met up with a college friend and I met with an alum. On Thursday, we saw American Idiot. On Friday, we got tickets to La Bete, starring David Hyde Pierce, Joanna Lumley, and Mark Rylance. And on Saturday we saw Time Stands Still with Laura Linney. I’ll review each in more detail later.

We also ate incredibly well (as usual). We had more Italian this time than we usually do, but we also had Thai, Mexican, and Greek, and PJ had Vietnamese.

And finally, we saw Black Swan starring Natalie Portman, which I’ll review later.

So, all in all, it was a fun, successful trip. I just wish that I had made it to a museum or two. Next year, I’ll also try to consolidate my alumni visits into one or two days, giving myself more time to play.

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