We're probably running this inot the ground, so we'd better make this the last post about Cindy Gallop's party. Reporter Vivienne Lehney asked our friends, all long time Y members, to give their impressions of the evening, and of the recent changes in the Chelsea neighborhood. (ChelseaNow.)
Did you have any expectations before going to the party about Cindy or her home?
Peter & Dorte -- We had no expectations about Cindy. We expected her to have a large fancy place, but had no idea how fancy.
George Chemeche -- I didn't expect to find an ex swimming pool turned to such lavishly designed condo apartment!
Penelope Anderson -- I was very excited to have been invited (a last minute cancellation of one of Debbie's guests.) Of course, I was curious about the apartment that had once been the Y. And hoping I would fit in.
What are your impressions of her after the party?
Peter & Dorte - Nice, pleasant, good-humored, diplomatic (concerning Ed) and rich.
George -- Cindy is a full-of-pepper women who loves to enjoy life and share it with others.
Penelope -- Warm, gracious, true to herself, enjoyed sharing her home. All very positive. Lots of space and Cindy loves it and loves living there.
Sherry Mazzoccohi -- I thought she was extremely charming and surprisingly intelligent. Usually people are one or the other, rarely both.
What are your impressions of her home?
Peter & Dorte -- More like a nightclub than a home in some ways (I guess this was also her intention, from reading the New York article). She has some amazing art.
George - It might not fill everyones expectations. But, for sure, it has a warm, cuddling ambiance. And for sure it reflects her personality. Very important.
Sherry -- Her apt was pretty wonderful. The NY magazine photos didn`t do it justice. She has an amazing art collection and probably the most taxidermy I have ever seen in one place except the natural history museum.
What do you miss most about the McBurney Y?
Peter & Dorte -- I was pretty depressed about the demise of the last Manhattan Y with gymnastics and the other sports (but you know this). Dorte and I joined in 1991, and were members until shortly before the building was closed.
George -- I miss the roof in the summer and the friendly staff members of the Seventies. I was a member for about 30 years. By the way, I wrote an obituary poem about the Y after it closed.
Penelope -- I've been a member since 1992. Originally is was a home away from home. It was a place to meditate with exercise and enjoy the community of members. And it was filled with history and caring staff, and you were a part of that history.
Sherry - It is hard to convey what the Y meant to all of us. That's where we all met and became friends. There are some people I have completely lost track of-that's a little like losing a part of yourself. Sure I miss the Y. I was a member for ten years. It was a more like an extended family than a gym.
What do you feel about recent changes in the Chelsea neighborhood?
Peter & Dorte -- This is a tough question. My feelings about the changes in Chelsea are very much those about New Yorkin general. The steep increase in housing prices pushed the middle class out of their enclaves, and they in turn pushed the poor out of their's. As a result that many neighborhoods are becoming more class-homogeneous. This isn't an especially original observation. I don't think it is a conspiracy, but it is a shame.
George --It changed for good. I think it is the most dynamic and interesting part of the city.
Penelope - Cheaply built high rent buildings that are pushing out low and middle income people. I moved to Chelsea in 1991 because it was a family neighborhood. Now I feel that I am living in a shopping mall, without a sense of community. It's sad, but I am getting used to it. (Photo: Penelope)
Sherry - Chelsea is changing rapidly. But that's the way things are.
What was your favorite part of the get-together?
Peter & Dorte -- The art and the food!
George -- To be with a group of people, most of whom live in small rooms or modest studio apartments, and still enjoy the lavishness of the hostesses fortune without any jealousy or resentment. That was heart-elating evening . . .
Penelope -- Meeting the gracious host and hostess. Meeting other neighbors. Meeting a gracious journalist. The conversation was fun and yes, it never hurts to be reminded that good people come in all economic levels.
Sherry -- I think my favorite part of the evening was when we all admitted we read Jamie Bufalino’s column first, then the horoscope in Time Out. I felt like we all sort of bonded over that.
George in his apt at the Chelsea.