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A Very Good Day

So yesterday I went down by Metro to visit smillaraaq at her place. I met her lovely doggie Ms. Biscuit and her sweet but shy cat Strega, and Biscuit and I got along very nicely indeed, and Strega got used to me pretty quickly and even came and hung out around me. And smilla baked bread and we talked for hours and then smilla let me play with her "Okami" game. And then we ate popcorn and watched anime: "Ginga Legend Weed" in strange Nordic fansubbing, which was cutely heroically silly, and the first couple of episodes of "Samurai Champloo," which was very cool.

And then the Mr. and the Young Lady came and got us, and we went to Old Town Alexandria and had (sadly) an only average-ish French dinner at Le Gaulois, which was disappointing because 20 years ago, when it was in DC, Le Gaulois was a really great restaurant. But then we went back and hung out at smilla's some more, all together, and listened to Anna Russell (classical music humor) and ate goodies and drank tea and read smilla's books, and then the Mr. fell asleep on her floor. XD

I brought smilla some books and manga to borrow, and she sent me back with more than twice as much, because that's just the sort of awesome person she is!

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( 15 comments — Leave a comment )
smillaraaq
Oct. 13th, 2008 08:33 pm (UTC)
Awwww, we all had a grand time, too! I'm quite impressed at how much Strega liked all of you -- she's definitely getting mellow in her old age. At this point I wouldn't be surprised if she goes for somebody's lap if y'all come over again (most likely if someone is busy trying to read, game, or do something else not conducive to petting a lapcat, of course...)

Shame about the restaurant, especially since my meal really wasn't bad at all -- dunno if that's because I just didn't have any prior experience of the place to go by, or if I just lucked out in picking such simple dishes that they were hard to screw up...

(As for loading you down with books, ah, piffle, that's nothing to do with being awesome -- that's me taking advantage of a chance to inflict books on you without having to haul a ton of paper on the Metro! *grins*)

Now we need to figure out some time when we can have another video party...you barely scratched the surface on Champloo, there's so much more fun stuff yet to come!
chomiji
Oct. 18th, 2008 01:54 am (UTC)

I'd love to come over again.

We're pretty picky about restaurant food. The place doesn't have to be fancy, but they need to be really good at what they do. I probably shouldn't have ordered what I ordered - it was meant to be Asian fusion, and that's probably a mistake at a country French place - but I usually like to get fish. And the lamb the Mr. had probably wasn't as good as at Tavira, and it was even more expensive.

(I still think it's generous to let your books and manga wander off with me, especially given how stuff gets just piled up around our place.)

smillaraaq
Oct. 18th, 2008 11:32 pm (UTC)
Well, maybe next time I can cook...that'll give me some incentive to complete refinishing those chairs, and to clear the poor table off... ;)
chomiji
Oct. 20th, 2008 02:06 am (UTC)

For that matter, I haven't cooked you a meal yet, either! But now that it's getting colder, I'm more likely to want to cook large hunks o' meat.

smillaraaq
Oct. 20th, 2008 02:24 am (UTC)
You make it sound like large hunks of meat are an unappealing thing! XD (In particular, if you have a good brisket recipe, that'll make me do a fine imitation of Miss B.'s most pathetic puppydog eyes! Mmmmmmm, just thinking about Passover seders with the ex-BF's family is making my tummy rumble.)

But it'd be particularly nice for me to have a chance to cook for other people, because while I do seriously love to cook it's a lot harder to work up the incentive to do it when it's just me and the critters; hell, when it's just me it can be trouble enough working up the heart to eat, let alone produce anything involving effort. And it doesn't help that my default mode is to cook in quantities better suited for an army than a single person...you run out of freezer space pretty quickly if you do that too often, and some things, especially desserts, really need to be consumed promptly rather than stored or they go bad.
chomiji
Oct. 20th, 2008 10:08 pm (UTC)

The big hunks o' meat comment is because I've loathed being too hot for years (and of course it's only become even worse recently), so during summer, I don't like the amount/duration of heat required to cook said hunks.

I improvise with brisket. I refuse to do the Coca Cola one because it gives the Young Lady indigestion and because we're avoiding low-fructose corn syrup. For Rosh Hashana this year, I made one with mustard and brown sugar that I thought was very tasty (and it disappeared quite rapidly). Another time, for Passover, I did one with apricots and white wine.

smillaraaq
Oct. 21st, 2008 12:30 am (UTC)
Heh, that's another one of the areas where I tend to whip out the slow cooker -- it's not big enough for really *huge* roasts, of course, but it does a surprisingly good job of slow braising without heating up the whole room. It's not the way to go if you're feeding an army or need to be done in more of a hurry, but it'll easily manage a roast big enough for three or four people, at least so long as none of them have sumotori-size appetites. :)

I tend to improvise with brines and spice rubs and marinades myself on roasted meats -- it's always tasty, but it's a little iffy if I ever want to try to replicate something that turned out particularly well...although really, that's the case with most of my cooking. About the only times I really follow a recipe closely are if I'm trying something unfamiliar for the first time, and even then I often tend to improv on the seasoning, and "measure" by eye and feel more than actual proper utensils...
chomiji
Oct. 22nd, 2008 02:48 am (UTC)

I believe I posted an approximation of my beer pot roast here once upon a time ... . If I were going to use a crockpot, I'd still want to brown my meat first. When I roast lamb, though, it's dry-roasting, so a crockpot wouldn't work.

smillaraaq
Oct. 22nd, 2008 04:03 pm (UTC)
*nod* I usually tend to brown things that I'm going to braise, it's one of the reasons I went for my oddball little multipiece slow-cooker instead of a traditional crockpot: I can brown meat, sweat onions and garlic, etc. directly in the pan on stovetop than switch it directly over to the slow cooker base, no need to get another pan dirty. (Or if I want to finish something for a few minutes under the broiler before serving, it works for that without having to transfer pans too, very convenient.)
smillaraaq
Oct. 16th, 2008 12:57 am (UTC)
You free for lunch tomorrow, btw? I need to run a bunch of errands downtown and thanks to some plumbing work going on around here, tomorrow's a very good day to do it all...and that way I can return a few more of your books and squee about my louiselux story properly!

(Also, you didn't warn me about the etymology of rugelach! I went Googling for recipes and just about DIED laughing when I saw the derivation of the name. Damn vines, is there ANYPLACE they don't turn up? *giggles*)

chomiji
Oct. 16th, 2008 02:25 am (UTC)

I need a Hakkai-w-vines icon ... .

I didn't know about the origin of the name of rugelach! Oh man, that's too funny!

Tomorrow's going to depend on whether my colleague makes it into work ... her little girl was apparently still very ill today (her husband usually cares for the child during the day). I suppose I can always just gab my chicken wrap and 10 minutes with you, if nothing else, but I don't know if that's worth your while. On the other hand, if she comes in, it should be no problem to spend the usual 45 min or so.

chomiji
Oct. 16th, 2008 01:35 pm (UTC)

We got another frantic phonecall this morning from my colleague ... her child and her new puppy are both ill now ... so if you want to blow through and say hi ... but I don't know whether that's worth for you.

smillaraaq
Oct. 16th, 2008 05:41 pm (UTC)
Hrmph, well, wouldn't you know it, I still haven't heard back from the last two people I'm putting packages together for, so it's looking like I'll just push this off 'til tomorrow (assuming they finally answer my mail) so I don't have to make repeat trips.
chomiji
Oct. 16th, 2008 05:49 pm (UTC)

I have rescheduled the doctor's appt. I had for tomorrow morning (my yearly stress echo-cardiogram), so if she does come in, I should be able to have a nice lunch with you. Otherwise, I'll be in the same boat as today.

So didja get my e-mail, anyway? I wrote that instead of a saiyuki_time thing ... (although I feel bad about that too, because I told louiselux I would do one this time).

chomiji
Oct. 17th, 2008 01:28 pm (UTC)

So the colleague's little girl is still sick (although colleague sounded more hopeful on the phone this morning), but my boss said the world would not end if I took a bit of a break for lunch (vs. grabbing something and bringing it back to my desk). So are you still planning on coming down here?

>hugs<

( 15 comments — Leave a comment )

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