Monday, October 22, 2007
Do you every have those times - when you're in the middle of them ... and you just know how special and wonderful everything is RIGHT THEN, and you feel like the most lucky person alive .. and know you will treasure that time forever and ever? There were lots and lots of moments like that this weekend. The first one was Friday night with just Frreenie and Blue - and my simple dinner of homemade Sloppy Joe’s on Sourdough bread. It was so easy and comfortable although everything was running late. Then Saturday morning coffee, orange cranberry muffins, the beautiful light that pours through my windows and turns everything to gold - mixed with the music and people - to create a sepia colored moment. We spent time looking at Blue’s portfolio, pictures I took in my college days, and reading the paper. At a leisurely pace we were all ready to go ... and no one was rushing around - and everything was on-time - or going as planned. When Mister Guitar showed up - we headed out for the Farmers Market. The weather was sunny and cool - and the stalls had all this good stuff - and pretty flowers - and everyone was smiling and happy. No one cared how fast or slow we walked - or who stopped to look at something - and who kept on for the next booth. We purchased some amazing produce and cheese - and then headed over to Durham and the American Tobacco Campus. I knew WHY I wanted to take BlueWingTeal there - and expect to see some amazing photos come out of it - but Frreenie and Mister Guitar were also blown away by the re-use design and water features. Plus - Mister Guitar was able to give us a brief description of tobacco farming - and it was just SO COOL. Then we started talking about where should we eat lunch - and they wanted to eat "real" food (not some corporate chain) .. and we started talking about true "local" food - and bar-b-que was mentioned - and the next thing I knew - I was taking them downtown Raleigh to Cooper's, which will soon be celebrating their 70th anniversary. I introduced Frreenie and BlueWingTeal to the joys of a pulled & chopped pork sandwich with coleslaw. Of course, I ordered hushpuppies for the group and Mister Guitar had greens and Brunswick stew. It's a great old diner type place - with LOTS of atmosphere. From there we went to Whole Foods - got a few different style beers, some bread, and a huge Pork Loin. We came home, started tasting beers, and more talking, while Blue fixed the loin and made pesto. Then we started setting out the "nibbles". Aged Provolone, Artesian Herbed Salami (courtesy of Blue and the Italian Market in Philadelphia), plus a tomato dipping sauce Frreenie brought .. and rosemary sourdough bread for dipping. *sigh* I started on the Chocolate Cranberry Tort for dessert - while Frreenie sliced and diced sweet and hot peppers, home grown cherry tomatoes, and red onions for our vinegar marinated salad. Side dishes (and main course for the vegetarians) included an arugula fresco tomato sauce on handmade linguine and spinach fettucini with "long beans", olive oil, and Parmesano Reggiano. Just about the time the kitchen was running a full speed, Dilly from the United Kingdom entered. After much hugging and laughter … we all settled in for some serious munching and more beer tasting. Next to arrive was my neighbor. This is how small our world is … as I went around making introductions Dilly finally looked her in the eye and said, “I know you” … and so they did. My Internet friend from England and my next door neighbor knew each other though professional connections! I think one of the best moments for me happened several times. I’d start to get that crazed look in my eyes – and feel like I needed to be doing 90 little cooking things at once – and then there was Frreenie or Blue by my side, whispering calming words, offering encouragement and just the right little bit of help. By the time we sat down to dinner - Wes and Dr.Esq arrived - both of them with wine, and Dr. Esq with flowers. Dinner was a lively conversation, passing bowls and plates of food, and lots and lots of laughter! After dinner - we all gathered around to see Frreenie's China pictures. They were great! He'd just been to Beijing and Kunming, China. There were pictures of the people, the countryside, the markets - and all the places he ate. Not to mention industry pictures from his consulting work. I am such a geek - I loved every little technical detail and moving video clip! When the slide show was over Mister Guitar got out his instruments. He brought 3 different ones and an amp. As he picked up each guitar there was a story and a song or two to highlight the depth and abilities of each guitar – not to mention the virtuosity of the musician. I sat on the couch with the biggest idiot grin on my face while he played, I'd look at Blue to my left and Dilly to my right, and Frreenie just across the room, and knew my world was perfect. Finally around 1:30 the party finished. Earlier I’d tucked Dilly in my bed - then we helped Mr. Guitar load his axes and amp. By 2:00 am Chez Mit was dark and quiet. Blue off to bed - and Frreenie and I to our couches. I'll try and tell you more about Sunday "soon" and share some of the pictures, but now it's back to work for this Mit.