I was unable to get the day off Wednesday, Thursday or Friday of this week, so I didn't think I was going to be able to do it. I didn't think I would be able to make it down to NYC to meet up with noma chef Rene Redzepi and have him sign a copy of his new new book, Noma: Time and Place in Nordic Cuisine. The best chance I had for this was on Thursday when he would be signing books at Williams Sonoma in the Time Warner Center from 5-7PM. When I left for work on Thursday, I thought the chances of me getting out in time to make the 4 hour drive to central Manhattan in time to catch Chef Redzepi were slim to none. The day happened to be a relatively light one in the OR and by 1:30PM with the help of a very nice partner, I was able to get out of there.
I was able to get on the road by 2:15, but I was afraid of NYC rush hour traffic. Though I ran into one fair traffic snarl on the NYS Thruway, the gods continued to smile upon me. Parking at the Time Warner Center Parking Garage, I was able to walk into the Williams Sonoma by 6PM. I expected to see a crowd lined up with books, but found none. When I asked at the cashier, they told me that there was a crowd, but that they had all had their books signed and that Chef Redzepi was now done for the day. Fortunately, they checked to see if he was still there. My luck held. Two minutes later and he would have been gone. Instead, he came back out, greeted me, called me "crazy" (which I most certainly was!) and signed my book. We chatted for a few minutes and he signed a few more books for a couple other stragglers who had wandered over, before we both had to leave – he for dinner upstairs at Per Se and me for my 4 hour ride back home. Call me crazy, but I would happily do it again.