Sunday, November 20, 2011

Documenting A Weekend (Or A Lack Thereof)

Alexandria's Opening Night 11/18/2011
My dear friend and co-star of Spatula Sarah says where you find a foodie, you find a camera in hand and guests at the dinner table rolling their eyes.  It's true. Almost any time I go out to eat, I take my camera. I never know when I will need to capture a meal in a photograph.

This weekend while I had my camera on me at all times, I only took the photograph you see here. And it doesn't even capture the deliciousness of the meal. If anything, it documents a food memory I always want to remember.

During the fall and early winter, often I find myself as a hunter's widow. At first I wasn't a big fan of that new role. But as the seasons have come and gone, I've learned to enjoy the time in our quiet house when I grade, cook, write, work on projects, and/or catch up on Jersey Shore. I've realized alone time really nurtures my interior life. But after 36 hours I really start to miss FD.

This weekend was not so quiet as most, though. It began with a family dinner at my house with my in-laws and my sister-in-law on Thursday night. Then us ladies departed around 10 p.m. to get seats for the midnight showing of the epic Twilight Saga's Breaking Dawn (which was fucking awesome, despite what any haters would say.) Friday afternoon after Big F and FD got back from the marsh, FD took off for the island, and Sarah came over to run through our Winter Wheat presentation entitled "Food Writing: Subgenre or Multigenre?" Then, joined by her hubs, we headed to Findlay for the opening of Alexandria's, where Michael from Revolver is the head chef. (The mole is the die for. An in-depth review is forthcoming.) We met up with G and E there and had a great time; the only thing missing for me was FD. Saturday morning Sarah and I gave our presentation, which went exceptionally well, and then Saturday night I had a date with my sis SEM at Revolver.

What's funny is I had imagined taking lots of pictures at family dinner, at Alexandria's, at Winter Wheat, and at Revolver. It was weekend full of a lot of my favorite people and my favorite food. But the lighting wasn't all that great at Alexandria's. And at Revolver, the opportunity never presented itself for SEM and I to "snap" some pics of us. To force a photographic moment is way worse than not taking any at all. The chicken meatballs that SEM ordered at Revolver were gorgeous; the perfectly cut pieces of toast with an even spread of cream cheese and herbs standing like small pyramids on SEM's dish are embedded in my mind. And seeing her in a pretty dress and feeling all girly in my Odd Molly dress was the perfect way to eat a meal celebrating her moving on in her life and going to LA.  I can't help to wonder, though, if sometimes the best meals are better honored as memories.

In an age where Facebook has made us all feel like celebrities with our need to post every last picture of our comings and goings, it was nice to have a weekend with some of my family and best friends that I can cherish as vivid memories, without photographs. And being surrounded my the ones I loved, especially after FD left for his trip, made my weekend feel a lot less lonely. Great friends truly are one of the best parts of life.

Though a part of me does wish I would have taken just a few more pics, at least for my journal...

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