Notable Encounters

Written By: Sabrina Varsi

I feel honored and privileged to live in the Town of East Hampton. I am in the midst of the woods providing the solace Emerson experienced and yet around the block is the bay providing serenity. It is divine, for my mind, heart, and soul receive nourishment. Those of us who live in or visit the Hamptons are susceptible to encountering the famous because this beautiful place of the world seems to beckon them like a mecca. People’s reactions to the famed often leave them awestruck. They are at a loss of what to do or say should an encounter occur. I am about to tell a real story of my interactions with Mr. Alec Baldwin. I was meandering along Main Street, East Hampton on Friday, January 28 th, 2011 and decided to go to one of the area’s landmarks, The Palm. I was greeted by an attendant seated behind a white-table clothed desk with an abundance of papers and envelopes. My reaction was “Oh-Oh”,” How much do I have to pay to enter?” The greeter informed me it was free to my relief. I was told that it was an event to attract new members and inform established members of the East Hampton Conservators. She informed me that Mr. Baldwin would be present for he is the Founder. I could attend the event although I was not a contributor yet. Well, I thought it could be a special evening. I entered the bathroom to examine what I looked like. J Crew blouse and matching sweater, black Spanish-style skirt, black opaque stockings with my black Uggs. I felt I was presentable and ready for the event. With my brunette hair, I thought that Mr. Baldwin would think I look either Tina Feyish or Sarah Palinish if He observed me. I am laughing out loud how fashion is so important to me as well as first impressions. When I began to mingle amongst the attendees I noticed Silas Marder. I consider him to be a gallery genius and his family to be regal because of their pristine landscape work. Their efforts are remarkable and represent natural beauty along with augmentation of our ecology. I knew I was in good company, but I was keeping an eye out for Alec Baldwin. I wanted to be in His vicinity when he addressed the crowd, but he was nowhere in sight. I began to read the papers I received upon entering. The East Hampton Conservators is a political action committee. The role of the organization is to elect into offices those individuals who support the preservation of the Atlantic Double Dunes along with our beaches, protect property values by fairly enforcing the town code and respecting the rule of law, reinvigorate community preservation fund purchases to conserve Our environment, historic properties and open space, guard against suburbanization and nurture Our neighborhood. I thought these were all significant issues to have constructive dialogue about and was looking forward to the occasion. I spotted Mr. Alec Baldwin and situated myself near Him. He was flanked by two important looking individuals. The first person to speak was the Treasurer of the Committee , Mr. David Doty. He shared the importance of the financial vitality of the organization. On the other side of Mr. Baldwin was Sylvia Overton, a founding member of the group. I was near her and hypothesized this would be a good position. Her introduction was an enthusiastic account of all the contributions Mr. Alec Baldwin has dedicated to the East Hampton community aside from his accolades in the entertainment industry. His support of the East Hampton Film Festival and being a leader for Guild Hall were just some of her points. At that instance there was a lapse of words. I felt I had an opportunity to speak up. I muster up that trait from being a retired science teacher of middle school students. I can be impulsive and seize opportunities to share knowledge. I called out that Alec Baldwin can also be seen at Most Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church of East Hampton !! I don’t know how that came out of my mouth. It is a fact that he attends Mass there because I was dazzled upon observing him. People were approaching him and I was speechless. I could barely move and yet here I was sharing information before a rather large gathering and I was not nervous about the reactions. What a change on my part. No fear of the famous. His reaction to my statement was simply awesome and unforgettable for me. Mr. Alec Baldwin did the sign of the cross symbolizing the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I could not believe I got a direct response! He is such a good actor and perhaps now He would be speaking before a congregation as the room laughed. His speech emphasized the need to be present and speak up for the important values of this organization for our town. The evening was coming to an end with the last of the delicious foods being eaten and I got some energy to try to continue my interaction with Alec. I must have felt some sort of empowerment so I positioned myself by the parking valets figuring Mr. Alec Baldwin would eventually present a ticket. My hypothesis was correct and as Alec was waiting for his car I asked one of the attendants if they knew of any taxi companies. Alec heard, but did not engage. His car arrived and once situated He slowly rolled over the pebbles toward the exit. I thought this was the end, but Mr. Baldwin came to a stop because at that very minute enters an Amagansett Taxi. The driver rolls down her window upon His request. The expression of the driver was one of disbelief. I was now situated between the two vehicles. Alec shared that he has used their services to John F. Kennedy Airport as a group of five stunned women exited the van. I asked the driver how much she would charge knowing I don’t have Mr. Alec Baldwin’s savings. He displayed a twinkle in his eye and drove off. Mr. Baldwin had seven women mesmerized instantaneously. I returned into the Palm and one of the ladies from the van followed me to the bathroom. She told me that she and her friends thought I was his girlfriend. Well if I were, I wanted to tell her, I would not have been in her presence, but with Him. However, I responded, “I wish.” Upon My exit I told her to have a good meal knowing she was thrilled to just have seen Alec Baldwin. So this commoner had a memorable evening indeed thanks to a notable of the lovely East Hampton community. Thank you for the everlasting meeting.