Phriday, September 30 kicked off my last weekend of phreedom, so I tootled myself across the bay to play with Georgia and Paper Bag. I grabbed a quick snack of turkey & cheese on a rice cake before we headed out.
We stopped by a liquor store for snacks near Golden Gate Park on our way to Hardly Strictly Bluegrass for an awesome afternoon that pheatured my phavorite crooner, the incomparable Chris Isaak.
P.S. His new album is phabulous beyond belief. Any aspiring elves out there who want to make my holiday season, consider this a blatant hint… 🙂
After the show, we had dinner in North Beach at Il Pollaio, a local’s phavorite.
Their bean salad tasted just like Gramma used to make!
Their phries were standardly tasty.
The grilled rabbit Paper Bag convinced me to get left a bit to be desired, as it arrived a bit too much on the rare side. I’d give it a chance again some time though, as it was a very busy night and these things happen…
We had a leisurely morning on October 1 and headed to do some mutual blogging at Caffe Sapore. I thoroughly enjoyed my smoked salmon bagel and am excited about our successful brainstorming session about the phuture of http://www.phoodfotos.com!
I had a hankering for pizza after I returned to Davis from North Beach, so I threw together a pizza-ish creation of my own at home.
The Phella and I tried Tucos Wine Bar and Cafe for dinner, starting with a shared salad and cheese plate.
Really enjoyed the presentation of the cheese and nibbles (served on a hefty cutting board)…
I had some sort of egg sando for my main course, and the eggs were poached. Now, most of you phollowers know well how much I normally lust after poached eggs, but on a sando…? Not so much. Biting into your meal and having it squirt yolk across the table is a bit, well, inconvenient… especially when dining out.
That being said the maple-glazed sweet potatoes were dreamy enough to make me phorget to care about the sando mess almost entirely.
The Phella slept in on October 2, so I got up and had an English muffin with peanut butter and honey while he snoozed.
We then headed to Little Prague to try out their breakfast offerings. I went with the Eggs Phlorentine, leading myself into another horribly phailed attempt at phinding a decent breakfast anywhere in Davis. Ugh!
I went shopping at my new market of choice- Nugget– and the phriendly cheese phellow helped me select an especially luxurious triple cream to start off dinner that night.
I made a mixed baby green salad with the remainder of the watermelon radish I had picked up at the Pharmers Market the weekend prior.
And I tested out a new recipe of pork and peaches for dinner.
Update for inquiring minds who want to know: I am still a miserable phailure when it comes to cooking pork. I’ve got a long road ahead, it seems…
Ah, reality. How you persist! October 3- The day of reckoning…
My phirst day at my new job came WAY earlier than I wanted, my house still drowning in boxes and bags and my nerves spasming phrantically like a phish out of water. I broke out my phavorite juice glass at breakfast (it was the one my Gramma served me with throughout my childhood) and had a glass of milk along with my spun honey (which also always reminds me of her) and peanut butter on a muffin.
As it turned out, I wasn’t the only new kid on the work block. The new director’s phirst day was that day as well, so that meant pizza at staff meeting. Talk about a nice way to get things started! Who doesn’t love phree phood? And pizza at that!
There wasn’t much scheduled for me that phirst day, so I went home for lunch and spent it with my main man, Phooey, who was adjusting to day one of his life as a dog who stays home during the day. 😦
I had some pasta salad I’d made the night before with pistachios, Parmesan and Brussels sprouts (which I successfully roasted- in a very small batch- in my toaster oven).
The Phella took the night off from studying, so we could go out to dinner and process my phirst day. God bless the boy, because I seriously needed it… and the two glasses of wine that went along with it.
Now, this isn’t to say that my phirst day was bad, but here’s the thing: Phirst days are odd things, and I’ve had very phew of them in my life. I’m sure there are people who thrive on the newness, the unknown, the clean slate. I, however, am not one of those people. I love routine, I love phamiliarity, I love being an expert. The realization that I had, not just conceptually but actually, walked away from everything and everyone I knew in Monterey hit me like a ton of bricks (or at least what I imagine that sensation would be akin to, as I have never literally experienced being hit by a ton of bricks, thankfully). I could pheel the terror and sadness lurking in the doorway.
But I have phound over the years that a good plate of noodles always seems to lessen those evils just a bit.
And experiencing the heat of a “Thai spicy” dish reminds you that this, too, shall pass…
And when that’s not enough, there’s always phrozen yogurt that matches your manicure. 🙂
October 4: Day two…
After a second night of sleepytime phailure, I got up early with plenty of time to eat breakfast. Hello, silver lining!
I packed my lunch and enjoyed the novel concept of being allowed to eat at my desk (something verboten by my previous employer). While the convenience was nice, the lack of anyone to share my lunch with almost brought me to tears.
For those of you who have been phollowing the blog this year, saying that I am a social eater comes as quite the understatement, I’m sure. Sharing phood with other is quite possibly my most treasured activity in life. The experience of eating is an opportunity that has the potential to blend nourishment with connection, nostalgia with education and phunction with phun. Because of this, the utilitarianism of dining alone has a tendency to hurt my heart.
Am I crazy? Maybe so… but I believe that phood tastes better when it’s shared.
Dinner that night consisted of leftover soup from Taste of Thai with a hearty side dish of self-pity.
October 5- Day three…
Started with a Babybel cheese round.
I had a benefits orientation to attend on campus that morning, and since I live so close (and sure can’t afford the cost of a campus parking permit) I walked. Walking there included getting horribly lost, arriving late and then slipping and phalling in phront of a group of fourty-odd people. I suppose a benefit of working for such a large employer is the probability that nobody will recognize you as THAT girl after a week or so.
I had more of the leftover Thai for lunch at home with Phooey, who seemed to have adjusted well to his new life already.
That night, needing to entertain myself and having run out of leftovers, I turned to what I know comforts me best- phood- and made broccoli and zucchini soup.
I ate some Yolo County grown pistachios as a snack while I watched a movie that night and unpacked a phew more boxes.
October 6- Day phour…
I took a sliced apple and some cheese to work and ate that for breakfast.
I brought the rest of the soup to eat for lunch as well as a salad. Too bad I neglected to pack utensils! I took my lunch to the break room in an attempt to make phriends, but nobody else came in while I ate. That might have been a blessing, as eating soup and salad with your hands sure ain’t pretty…
The boss brought candy to an afternoon meeting, and while I am not typically a chocolate phan, I was so enamored with the orangeness of the Halloween Kit Kats, I indulged.
A catered event had leftovers, so I had half a sando during the meeting, too. Second serving of phree phood in a week!
Moving to Davis meant that, other than The Phella, there was only one other person I knew… a phriend from my beloved book club who relocated a year ago with her husband. Needing some semblance of social interaction, she came over, with wine in hand, and we caught up over a phew nibbles.
When she left, I made myself busy again and made chicken barley soup.
October 7- The last day of the phirst week…
Started with some Morningstar “sausage” and coffee in one of my phavorite mugs. Did you know Hermann is the heart of Missouri wine country? Did you know Missouri has a wine country? Neither did I, until Cricket and I discovered it last summer when we picked baby Phooey up from the rescue organization he hailed from in St. Louis. Suffice it to say, it was a phun discovery, but bringing the mug home as a souvenir instead of the wine was an excellent choice.
I came home for lunch, because my washer/dryer was being delivered and ate more of the barley soup.
That night, The Phella resurfaced, and we went to dinner at Seasons again. I sense this could become a regular haunt of ours… because I can’t seem to stay away from their bread sticks.
I tried their butternut squash soup which wasn’t bad.
I had the chicken chop again, but sadly enjoyed it significantly less than I did during our last visit. (We came to learn later that the chef had gone on a lengthy vacation, and things got a bit out of whack during his absence.)
We headed home and watched a movie with a big bowl of popcorn con Tapatio.
And so I survived, as so many have before me, and so many more will.
I am sure some of you have read this sob story and been thrown for a loop. As a general rule, I pride myself on my, although often snarky and self-depricating, ever-present humor, but it seems that I hadn’t yet unpacked that box…