Week 1- 1 Restaurant, Lunch Menu
Morimoto- Fast seating, fast service. Lovely soup and salad, loved the dressing with crunchy scallions. I got the chicken, curious and thinking it would be interesting. Matt got the Chef's Sushi Sampler. Everything was uninspired. I was hoping for much more. Sure it was good, and it was fast, but come on- its Morimoto- Iron Chef- give me something good! The decor was (although I'll sound nerdy) really really cool. Worth the trip for the bathrooms for sure- although the heated seats were broken. I'd go back to try some rolls, but wish I was given more incentive. Out of 10- 7.
Week 2- 4 (yes 4) Restaurants, all Dinner Menu
One if By Land- Two if By Sea- Beautiful. I walked in and immediately loved it. We were seated upstairs and it was warm and cozy. Each table has its own white candlestick and two fragrant roses. Great touch. The brick was dark and warm, the carpet a deep burgundy, so dark and elegant. When I got up at one point and walked downstairs towards the rest room a waiter on the stairs held out his hand and made sure I got down the stairs with ease- classy. Every dish was lovely and delicious. I got the sea bass and Matt got the chicken. The sea bass was soft, moist and light with delicious tapanade. The chicken was tender and flavorful and served with lovely whipped potatoes. The raspberry sorbet was fantastic, I adored it. Really. Out of 10- 10.
Tribeca Grill- Good, solid meal and a nice atmosphere. The rolls were chewy and warm, the beet salad light with sweet baby beets. I got the Sea Bass (again, I know, nothing else I liked offered) it had a nice light flavor and was against moist and perfectly prepared. Matt got the Ravioli which was packed and mushroomy (I don't like mushrooms). Others at the table got the beef dish- it was packed with well paired flavors and moist- yum. I had the panacotta for dessert- light and sweet, a good ending to a good meal. Given the price it won't be worth returning for me, but its a good place over all. One note- in the handicap bathroom on the first floor- the paper towels were dispensed at the top of the dispenser- way out of reach of many handicap patrons...hmm. Out of 10-8
Mesa Grill- Started with a yummy peach margarita- definitely recommend it. This place had the worst service over all. The hostess was a bit snobby and we were not seated promptly (at the 4 other restaurants, all pleasant and prompt). Our waiter then ignored us most of the night and we hardly got our water filled and when we did it was room temp. I had the chopped salad and tried the tortilla soup- both good and light enough for an appetizers. We all had the chicken. It was yummy and moist- very Texas (fitting). The blue corn tortilla with basil butter was the highlight for me. The dessert was a bit off putting for me, and not that inspired. I had the peach short cake and others the chocolate cake- and all were so so. Overall, I was underwhelmed and wouldn't head back there. Out of 10-5.
Kobe Club- I walked by it 3 times before I found it. I guess they want to be cave like- and they achieve. This place has such cool decor. I loved it. The knife ceiling- awesome. The light fixtures, warm and interesting. The way they give you the check- so cool. I tried pretty much everything on the menu. All delicious. The raviloi- so flavorful and a good saltiness- I love salt. The tartare, so fresh it was tasteless, perfect. The 50 year old aged balsamic- yummy with perfectly ripe tomatoes. I had the chicken, the portion was huge and it was tender and nicely flavored. The two beef dishes were moist and flavorful, I don't love beef- but everyone at the table raved. We tried the mashed potatoes (leek and wasabi) both were so smooth and yummy and the wasabi had just enough bite. We also tried the peas and pearls- they as Matt said, "Taste like good peas" Well- yeah. The berry's and creme were a perfect ending to the meal. I think I enjoyed Kobe club the best- such a great atmosphere. The only bad thing- they tried too hard with the bathrooms and they are just weird. Having to press a foot pedal to run the faucet? Needing the strength of a brute man to close and open the doors? Come on. Out of 10- 9.
So there you have- my crazy full restaurant week. I know, I know, it's over now and you can't try them at the reduced cost. But keep this post in mind for the return of restaurant week in the Winter! And if you need a great restaurant to go to and are willing to pay full price- I highly recommend One if by Land-Two if by Sea or Kobe Club.
Saturday, July 28
Week 1- 1 Restaurant, Lunch Menu
Thursday, July 26
I was a bit chilly when we climbed into the cab on Monday night, but I left the window most of the way down. I love the feeling of moving fast through the city streets, the windows down, the wind in my hair and on my face. It is admittedly one of my favorite parts of taking cabs at night.
We were stop and go on 6th for a bit, but as soon as we hit the park and the cab turned left on Park, we were off. I put my head back and turned my face to the open window. I felt calm, at peace, happy to be in that moment. I reached my hand across the seat and Matt took it. He was in the moment too. It really hit me that this was my life, and I was happy. I was in a city I love, with the man I love and the wind was flying across my face and through my hair, I felt alive. I didn't want it to end, but as we exited the cab, Matt took my hand again and we walked slowly down our block still a bit entranced.
And then, in front of our first place together, he made the moment even longer by getting down on one knee and opening a box to a sparkling diamond ring. And I said yes. Of course. And there were kisses and, "Oh my god we're engaged!"
As he walked me around the block to help us come back to reality he gave me something my Father had written in January of 2006 at my parents annual New Years Eve party. It was his prediction for the year and it said, Adrienne will get a ring. Maybe it was a little late, but I did, and he was there, full blessing and all.
Friday, July 20
The mid-summer cool breeze washed over me as I walked across 91st and neared home.
I felt it stir around me, and looking up 91st towards Park noticed the full green trees that shaded the street, the quite people walking down it, how the cars were a part of the street darkened by the leaf cover, and everything just kind of fell silent for a moment. I can feel it now coming in the open windows. It feels like home.
Wednesday, July 18
I woke up at 3 wondering what the noise was. It was the big round drops of rain on our AC unit. I pulled the shade out a bit and looked out the window. Ick.
I woke up again at 8 and hit snooze, 5 times. Ick.
When I finally got up, I had to turn on the light to get dressed, thus waking Matt up way before he probably wanted to, "No, its okay, I should get up, its okay." That's why I love him.
I had already planned on wearing a dress, Thank God. Jeans don't cut it in this weather, you'll be soaked to the mid thigh by the time you reach the subway.
I walked outside and put up my umbrella, it would be helpless in this downpour, but I tried anyway. I turned around at the end of my block. I walked inside and buzzed upstairs, "Will you bring me down my raincoat?" Again, this is why I love him.
When he opened the door to hand it to me, I asked, "Wanna drive me to 86th St?" I was mostly kidding and he said no anyway. He's not completely selfless, but who is?
The rain had let up at that point, so it wasn't as bad as I thought anyway.
As soon as I signed on to email when I got to work I got a gchat: "I feel so guilty. As soon as you left I thought, oh man I should drive her and tried to call." Okay, this is why I love him.
But besides the complete selflessness of my boyfriend that makes me adore him, I should have known the rain was a sign.
Tonight my 6 train pulled into 14th st. and there was a 4 waiting across the platform, the typical train switching happened, and both sat, doors open. First they told everyone the 4 train was out of service. So they all go on our 6. Then they told us the 6 was out of service, so we all got off. THEN they told us there were no east-bound trains running. So we all left the station.
Crap. At least it wasn't raining anymore. I had to cancel my plans and feared I'd have to venture to a bus... a bus?? I'd never taken one of those, how does it work here!!
Luckily again, my there in a call boyfriend looked up that the NRQW's were running, so I got on a surprisingly not too crowded one and, I think, got to the last 6 train out of 59th st. And, when I got home sweaty and tired, he had already turned the AC on in the bedroom for me.
So, although the rain turned out, as I feared, to be a bad sign, there was some silver lining on the clouds.
God, that was cheesy.
But, in all seriousness- I feel for the people that were truly affected by the transformer explosion.
Tuesday, July 17
So I do this thing when I've got plans that involve putting forth out of the ordinary efforts. I want to bail out last minute. Say, I've got plans to meet friends somewhere that requires trains I've never taken before and many transfers and will result in me not knowing how to get home from said place. I'm usually gung-ho when we make the plans and then as the day comes and the time to leave approaches, I want to call and say, "Sorry, I'm out." I'm pretty sure it is because I don't want to put in the effort, and am a bit nervous about getting there. But if I had stuck it out, and gone anyway despite my hesitations I would probably have had a blast, seen a new part of the city and gotten more comfortable with the transit system, so how come I can't see past my ehhnes?
Perfect true life example:
I bought Summer Stage Decemberists tickets about a month ago. I was totally pumped. I'd been listening to Crane Wife since the beginning of the year and was really getting into it. Many weekends in February and March had been spent at home with Mom, Decemberists blasting and us writing at the kitchen table. Enough back story, I was excited.
Then, all of a sudden it was the Sunday before the concert. I didn't know what time the show was, where the stage was, and what the plans with my friends were. I started to get a little anxious.
E-Mails were flying back and forth on Monday, and it was determined that the working girls would meet the non-working girls inside the venue close to when we figured the Decemberists would go on. We would miss the group dinner and find it on our own, sad. I felt rushed at work, we had spent most of the day at another location meeting people, and I almost felt like canceling, working till 7 and just chilling at home with Matt. What didn't help was that I'd had a busy full weekend and Monday hurt even more when it came. Again, I wanted to cancel. I'd been so pumped when I'd bought the tickets and now, I didn't care. I was able to see a great up-and-coming band, in the middle of central park on a gorgeous day and I didn't want to. What's wrong with me?
Well, I didn't back out- really how could I? Instead I took my time at dinner with my other working-girl friend and causually strolled over to the park and Summer Stage entrance. I tried not to rush myself, or stress myself out, it wasn't worth it.
When we got inside, the non-working girls weren't even there yet! We sat around and people watched as Grizzly Bear played, I wasn't that into what they were playing at the time, and waited. When the full group finally came together we pushed our way into the crowd and got pretty good standing room seats.
Grizzly Bear played their last song, and I loved it, and then the Decemberists came on and they were fantastic. They tell such great stories with their songs and put on a great live show. They were all dressed as if for a garden party and started the show with summery songs. I only know their most recent album and I loved the new-to-me songs and want to download their other albums after I post this.
While we were clapping and yelling for them to do an encore I thought about my hesitations earlier in the day and how glad I was that I'd ignored them. I was standing in front of a small stage, seeing a fantastic band with great friends, a cool summer breeze was blowing around us and firefly's flickered beyond the stage. "I have to remember this feeling next time", I thought, and hopefully I will.
Saturday, July 14
We were driving back from Tybee and the Crab Shack, we had just seen dolphins, had dolphins swim 50 feet away from us. We were headed to Sonic for frozen drinks. It was lovely. The AC was pumping and we were full of crab and clam and still a little wet from the beach, but it was good. I saw a friend call me for the second time and thought, "hmm I should pick this up". She had bad news. She had just heard that another friend's* mom had committed suicide and he and his dad had found her. I was devastated, and I didn't want to be. I hardly knew him anymore, but I felt his pain. I wanted to enjoy the moment I was in, I didn't want my head clouded with grief, I didn't want to be taken to a place of sorrow, I was frustrated with the process. Even though I really had no connection to him anymore I still felt so strongly, my heart was open to it because of what I'd been through. You can't control these things, I tried to and it kept flowing back, so I just let myself feel it. I drifted out of the conversation in the car, I sat back and watched the Spanish moss covered trees fly by. I drank my frozen drink slowly and silently. I let myself feel it, and then I was able to enjoy the moments around me again.
I'm sending him this card today:
The easiest way to start is to say I'm sorry. I'm so deeply sorry for your loss. I know the pain, grief, frustration, anger, sorrow, heartbreak you are feeling. Although our losses are different and we are different people, I think in some ways what you'll experience will be similar to me, and I want you to know that if you need anything don't hesistate to let me know. If it's to vent, ask questions, just be around someone who "gets it", I'm here. Someone told me last summer, who had also experienced a great loss, "it is possible." That is been something I've thought about often as I waded through the mourning process. It is possible to get out the other side and feel a bit better, it is possible to continue your life, your "new normal" as I call it with a huge gaping hole in your life, it is possible. Again, I'm here if you need anything. The entrance fee fucking sucks, but once you're in the club, the other members are very nice and will do anything to help a new member.
Wishing you peace and serenity in this process.
*He is a guy I went to camp with, who I was fairly close with 10 years ago on our camp trip to Israel, but I haven't seen him in probably 6 or 7 years. Matt plays poker at his apartment sometimes, but he isn't always around.
Thursday, July 12
I move fast, but everyone moves fast in NY so generally I don't notice it so much. Lately I've noticed how fast I'm trying to move in relation to how slow the people around me seem to be moving, generally they are moving into my way so that helps with the noticing. Have I sped up?
My Mom stayed in our apartment when we were in Mexico, she loves NYC and jumped at the chance to have our apartment to herself (and her two friends) for a weekend. My Mom also moves fast, and in Concord, NH it is like warp speed. She commented to me several times after being here for the weekend how great it felt to be moving fast and have no one notice, because they're all moving fast too. Generally I agree.
But, as I said, lately I must be going a true warp speed because I'm bumping into people, falling over myself to get around them, walking in the street to avoid masses of slowpokes, etc. What's up with that? I noticed it Tuesday as I walked to work. I thought, "hmm, am I really walking so fast or are there just more slow people around me?" I know what you're thinking, its the tourists, but I live on the UES, there aren't really tourists up here at 9:20AM, are there?
Then today as I was heading into train I almost pushed the man in front of me to get him to move down the stairs, couldn't go around him he was too big and there were people coming up). Once he finally got down the stairs I had to make a quick football like move to get around his big frame instead of either bump into him, bump into the wall or wait behind him as he slowly took out his card and moved toward the gate.
I sighed as I walked onto the platform and started to fast walk to my spot. Then, in front of me I saw a grandmother walking hand and hand with her granddaughter. I watched as she looked down at her with the biggest and most genuine smile on her face, such a look of love and devotion that I slowed down.
"Wow," I thought, "Look how happy she is to just be in this moment sharing it with her granddaughter."
I walked at a normal pace, passing them as they sat on the bench near my spot. Maybe I have been walking too fast, maybe I needed to slow down, maybe all the slower people around me were little signals singing Simon and Garfunkel to me, "Slow down, you move too fast..."
I guess sharing that moment in the grandmother, granddaughter relationship, clearly a purely loving and tender one, is what it took. People around me walking too slowly aren't going to do it, its the people around me, who they are and what they can share with me, that will.
Wednesday, July 11
"I want to write down our conversations on the trip."
"It'll be a short list" snicker
"Isn't that a little weird?"
"What does it stand for?"
"I don't know, but isn't it a little weird?"
"Cause of the Gestapo?"
"I want one of those watches you slap on."
"A slap bracelet watch?"
"Yeah! Slap bracelets were awesome!"
"Whatever happened to them? Didn't someone get hurt?"
"I think so, yeah"
"That's one of the problems with our litigious society. Someone gets hurt by something and then it's gone. Why can't they just put it out there that someone got hurt and then have a little fun with it?"
"Yeah, I don't know. How do you spell litigious?"
"NJ revolves around the turnpike- that's the truth. A fun game to play is looking at all the stupid town names. Maybe we'll get to see my least favorite town name."
"Yeah, I think I remember this."
"So what is it?"
"Well, I don't know if we're going to pass it or not."
"Just tell me the name."
"Lodi New Jersey."
"Right, I remember now."
"I haven't seen the name of every town across the US but that is definitely low on my list of good names."
"I like the name Lodi."
"Maybe if there was a town like Matt Sucks, I'd like that less."
"Yeah, Mattsucks New Jersey."
"What are you thinking about?"
"I don't know. What are you thinking about?"
"What you're thinking about."
"You're thinking about what I'm thinking about?"
"This was a good conversation."
"It doesn't have to be over."
"I'm thinking about passing this guy," Said as he passes a guy.
"Is that the moon?"
"That red light?"
"NO!" pause, "That!"
"Woah, it is red."
"Yeah, it's on the horizon."
"(mocking) That red light."
"I was gonna say, if you thought that was the moon you're way off and we're about to pass it."
Friday, July 6
People move more slowly here. I'm moving a bit more slowly.
We stay up late and sleep late, we move through the day at our own speed. Having lunch at 3 and dinner at 9.
We sit in air conditioned rooms and talk, we walk through hazy hot streets and comment on the Spanish moss trees. We grill every night and comment on how good it tastes, how Kate and Eric are going to grill every night even after we leave.
We stood and watched the fireworks over a crowd of people and drank beer out of plastic cups, our own beer, it's allowed here. I put $1 into a juke box and we didn't hear my songs, but it didn't matter. We walked three blocks too far in the heat only to find what we were looking for across the street from where we started, but it didn't matter.
We sit in Adirondack chairs under the shade of old trees while we watch dogs play in wood-chips. Everyone knows each other via the dogs and all watch throughly entertained as two bigger ones wrestle. Its enough amusement to fill a lazy afternoon.
I move more slowly here.
Tuesday, July 3
I'm off to Savannah- to see
Kate- the bestest
Eric- The boyfriend, and also awesome
Looking forward to:
Funny conversations with Matt
Seeing beautiful landscapes
Writing in the car
Having an excuse to eat bad food
Watching the types of people at rest stops change
Getting to Kate's front door
An open stretch of road
Not looking forward to:
Driving in a car for 13+ hours
Being nervous that if I fall asleep Matt will get sleepy
Criticizing Matt's driving (Doing it doesn't mean I like it!)
Eating bad food because we're on the road
My totally anxiety and pushiness about "just getting there"
Updates from Savannah to come, and lots and lots of pictures
Sunday, July 1
It was just as I wanted it to be. Bagels, Clean Apartment, Sunny Bedroom, Inspiration, and a Computer in my lap. Now all I have is a two day work week. Driving down to Savannah to see Kate and Eric on Tuesday. Great way to start what is looking like a great week.