My summer playing high priced, high powered lawyer  Natasha July 15 , 2002

Well this has definitely been the busiest, most grandest summer.  I
arrived at Willkie Farr mid-May and for my first day's lunch was taken
to the Four Seasons, where we dined among the rich and powerful, (I
don't remember what I ate, but I know it was really expensive).  For
dessert, the partner who took us ordered a Four Seasons exclusive, a
cotton candy concoction with strawberry ice cream in the middle.  I can
now say, that I have probably eaten the most expensive cotton candy on
earth. I was then immediately put to work on the Adelphia bankruptcy
case, although at that time, it was not in bankruptcy yet (they've got
to pay for those lunches somewhow).  Adelphia is the 6th largest cable
company undergoing major financial troubles since it was discovered in
May that the majority share holding family had loaned itself about $3
billion worth of company money.  In congruence with my arrival at
Willkie, we were hired by Adelphia to represent them for any legal
issues and bankruptcy proceedings.   What followed has been a whirlwind
of work for both the firm and myself.  Typically, during your time as a
summer associate (which is what they call us), you spend most of your
time being wined and dined, and just generally wooed by the firm.
While I have had no lack of wining and dining, I have definitely been
busy working on this case as well.  More than 10% of the firm (about 40
of the 350 attorneys) is working on this case, and I am one of the few
summers that has had the opportunity to work on it from the beginning.
I say "opportunity" because even though I was here most of Memorial Day
weekend trying to put together a report for a corporate partner on
Adelphia's corporate governance, and besides the fact that I almost
missed Father's Day dinner because I was working on a bankruptcy
pleading for one of Adelphia's subsidiary's, it has been really
exciting to work on a case that has been in the news, and to be dragged
around to meetings and conference calls with big whig financial gurus
from Solomon Smith Barney and Lazard and the CEOS of major companies.
In a strange twist of irony, it turns out that my Dad happens to have
an investment in a company that was in a joint venture with an Adelphia
subsidiary.  During Father's Day weekend, I was working on the
bakruptcy pleading for this subsidiary, and basically the effect of
this subsidiary declaring bankruptcy is that my Dad does not get his
money from his investment.  And although we only discovered this
strange conincidence post Father's Day, I do now have feelings of guilt
that basically the work I was doing that day was adverse to my dad.
What an ungrateful daughter!  In addition to the work, we have also
done alot of fun stuff.  We've had cocktails at Madame Tusseaud's Wax
Museum, spent an evening in the Central Park Zoo, where we enjoyed a
huge buffet, and were entertained by magicians, face painters, men
walking on stilts, and the animals of course.  I've been taken to lunch
at many of the premier restaurants in the city, and we even went to see
Mamma Mia on Broadway.  Just this past weekend, we went on a bike tour
around Westport Conn (in one of the fanciest neighborhoods in the tri-
state area; I think they are trying to show us what we could have) and
then went to one of the partner's houses (more like a mansion), and sat
around by the pool deck eating lobster and drinking pina coladas.
While all this extravagance and opulence may seem incredible (which it
most certainly is, and you're getting no complaints from me), the firm
is merely trying to lure us in (we won't be able to enjoy ourselves
like this again until we've slaved away for 10 years and have become
partner).  And of course, the reason they take us out so often and have
so many events for us is because they are trying to indcotrinate us to
the fact that we will be seeing our co-workers all day and all evening
for many years to come.  While Jessica lives a very zen buddha life
watching sunrises and creating films in the South West, I am living a
most unbalanced lifestyle of partying hard and working hard, but hey,
it's been a blast.
Love, Natasha

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