"There will be little rubs and disappointments everywhere, and we are all apt to expect too much; but then, if one scheme of happiness fails, human nature turns to another; if the first calculation is wrong, we make a second better: we find comfort somewhere . . . "
- Mansfield Park by Jane Austen
After 3 hours of delays in Los Angeles (due to toilet malfunctions, good times!) our flight finally launched for Tokyo.
And even though our flight was supposed to continue on to Bangkok it...well...didn't. They sent another plane on ahead and stranded all of us in Japan. Our three hour delay turned into a 15 hour layover.
It could have been worse. At least - due to my crazy work travels - I have priority status. So they didn't make us wait in the huge economy class holding pen. And at least they sent us to a hotel for the night.
And they fed us.
We showered and slept and saw sunrise over some random section of Tokyo.
Clearing customs was quick but confusing.
With time to kill at the airport, we made the rounds of the shops and found some...interesting...items.
Um, no. But this was more my speed - a tasty tuna rice cake!
That and a green tea latte and I was ready for another 8 hour flight.
Our new flight was on colorful Thai Airways.
We settled in for our 3-movie flight...
...and even tried some of the snacks!
(In the future, however, I'll be sticking to popcorn.)
We did find some indicators that Hurricane Sandy is on her way.
The upside-down trash can always lets you know something funky is happening in Midtown.
On a pessimistic note, these are the chairs most likely to end up flying through our bedroom window, as they are conveniently located just below our apartment.
Let's hope they take those inside soon.
A subway shutdown certainly isn't normal.
That didn't stop us from heading down to the village for dinner, though.
Of course, some places closed early in anticipation of the incoming craziness.
Our dinner reservation, at Chez Jacqueline, went off without a hitch. My pre-hurricane meal consisted of goat cheese croquettes, seared duck breast, potatoes sauteed in duck fat and flourless chocolate cake.
In fact, we got an extra bonus. With the subways closed, the city suddenly experienced a glut of cabs looking for stranded city folk. Every dude with a car was out looking for a fare.
Every dude with a limo, too.
No boring yellow cab for us! We found our way home in style.
We were supposed to eat elsewhere this night, but the thing about Punta Gorda is that if a cook doesn't feel like cooking one night....well, he just doesn't. So when we arrived for our reservation at Earth Runnings, no one was there! Instead, Ian (from Hickatee Cottages) - ever resourceful - took us over to Asha's new restaurant over the ocean (which opened only four days prior).
We had the place to ourselves and settled into a cozy corner. The surroundings were basic but clean. Only one other table of guests arrived during our entire dinner.
First up - order the local beer! Belikin!
Tasty! And dinner itself - amazing. For me, conch curry, mashed potatoes with garlic and steamed veggies. Ben had grilled fish.
Everything was fresh and cooked to order by Asha, who also took our orders and brought our drinks. We relaxed over the ocean, watching the waves and clouds and enjoying our food and drink in the cool evening breeze. Because nothing was pre-made, our dinner experience took several hours. But we had no other other pressing plans, aside from relaxing.
Conveniently, Ms. Flo (the owner of the best - and I suspect only - taxi in town) lives right next door and drove us back down the potholed road to Hickatee.
Another busy, delightful weekend is just behind us. Why Monday always has to follow such happiness is beyond me.
Ben, Doolin and I continued our yearly Easter tradition and treated ourselves to a leisurely brunch. This year, we enjoyed a four course extravaganze outside at Bar Boulud, near Lincoln Center. Toward the end, the breeze picked up and we got a bit chilled, but otherwise it was a wonderful experience. We began with pastries and coffee, then I had a decadent yogurt parfait, while Ben warmed up with oatmeal. For my main course, I ordered the mushroom frittata and Ben had the Croque Madam. Then there was dessert! I could barely mover afterwards! Doolin, of course, had a bit of everything and was the happiest puppy in the world.
In addition to brunching, we spent much of the weekend out with friends. We kicked things off with cocktails at Flute, then dinner at Petrossian and more frivolity at Don't Tell Mama. I saw Clybourne Park on Broadway and dined after at Toloache(my absolute favorite Mexican restaurant in NYC). We also snuck in a meal at Eaterysomehow and vowed to stop eating out so much! So I walked the aisles of Whole Foods and bought bunches of groceries, forgetting that we have show tickets for tonight for Nice Work if You Can Get It (in previews on Broadway) and will thus most likely need to grab food out after the show, since I won't have time to cook.
Yes - if you haven't figured it out, I have a life once again! It's amazing how much easier everything is when you actually work in somewhat proximity to where you live!
Those NYC gardeners know what they are doing. The tulips exploded into bloom exactly on cue, just in time for Easter/Passover crowds to invade Central Park.
I confess, I had little time for knitting this weekend. Besides the eating and playing and park-enjoying, much of my time was taken with test driving Fiats and Minis. Specifically, the Fiat Cabriolet and the Mini Cooper Clubman. If you have expert knowledge on either of these car, please shout out! We are in a quandary. We both prefer the Clubman, but the Fiat comes with an unbeatable parking deal....and it's a convertible. Seriously? But the Clubman has a sunroof and feels more safe and sturdy to me. If it comes down to price, we will be getting the Fiat, I suppose. Long term, the Mini Cooper would be a better "investment" but we are essentially looking for a short term solution.
IF we do get a car at all, that is. We are still considering our options. What is NOT an option is me taking the bus to work much longer! I am over it, let me tell you.
But the sock knitting, it stands here.
I am poised to turn a heel. This sock does have quite the interesting heel construction, too - I've not seen anything like it, so i'll give it a whirl.
I confess, I've done nothing. The book is still sitting there, waiting to be read. Nothing is packed and I haven't had time to even dream about the fun adventures ahead. I need to get on that.