Saturday, July 9, 2011

:::In a Good Place:::

Oh, I feel so good right now.

Today I went to Target, and while I was there I tried on three different nail polishes.

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I bought the purple-y one and I love it. It matches my newly found footloose and fancy free attitude. I feel more like myself than I have in a long time. I can't wait for the next step!

I love the idea of having different themes to my life. This chapter of city dwelling life is coming to a close. I may live in a city again some day, but as Aragorn said outside the Black Gate, today is not that day.

I am not sad to leave DC because I've done all that I wanted to do here. I've been very blessed since December 2007, and I'm not leaving with any bad mojo.

I can tell that some people here think that I'm making a bad decision. Through so many words they've said that I haven't given it my all, that by leaving I'm running away from 'real' life, or that the best opportunities for me aren't back in suburbia. Eh, okay.

The truth is that I've had a great time in DC. There are like two things left that I've always wanted to do and haven't yet, but otherwise I've seen and done everything on my to-do list. I love this town, I just don't want to be here anymore. And because I don't have to be here, I don't need to be here. I want to leave, so I am. That's all. I'm excited to be around family again and thrilled to be back West after almost four years of East Coast living. Amen. 

My friends are happy for me and think I'm making a great decision. I still get frustrated when people express doubts about my plans, but we aren't responsible for other people's perceptions of our lives. I am very happy and will leave here without regrets. Amen.

So, a week and some change and then I'm a Westerner again. Ha, ha! I'm so excited to go back! I know that there are going to be great opportunities coming my way, as well as the usual ups and downs of life. I'm ready for it all.

I'll leave you with some delicious photos. Last week I was invited to the going away lunch for dear little coworker Erica, and yesterday was my very own going away lunch.

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Devil-ish Eggs -- Maine Lobster, Crab, Smoked Salmon

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Cornmeal Battered Fried Green Tomatoes with Herb Goat Cheese and Green Goddess Dip
{I almost cried}

Ricotta, Pistachio, and Date Flatbread 

Skillet Corn Bread with Sea Salt and Honey Butter

Macaroni and Cheese with Gouda, Gruyere, Ham, Peas, and Apples

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Pan-Fried Chicken with White Gravy, Waffles, and Mac ‘n’ Cheese

I know it's not an original choice, but I love the food José Andrés makes. I was too busy eating to take many photos.

Pasamontés Manchego, D.O. Manchego
Sheep’s milk cheese, sweet and tangy
Idiazábal, D.O. Idiazábal
Sheep’s milk cheese, smoked, nutty flavor
Murcia al vino, D.O. Murcia
Semi-soft goat’s milk cheese bathed in red wine with a balance of salt and acidity
Garrotxa, D.O. Catalunya
Semi-soft goat’s milk cheese, delicate flavors of milk and a hint of nuttiness
Caña de cabra, D.O. Murcia
Semi-soft goat’s milk cheese, sweet and salty
Valdeón, D.O. Asturias
Blue cheese of cow and goat’s milk, intense flavor
{Those apricots were soaked in some kind of honey/cinnamon concoction that was to die for}

Gambas con Gabardina
Batter-fried shrimp with caper mayonnaise
{My friend ordered these and it totally freaked her out that they came with the heads on. It was hilarious.}

Ensalada de Remolacha con Cítricos
Salad of red beets with citrus segments, Valdeón cheese, pistachios and Sherry dressing

Croquetas de Pollo
Traditional chicken fritters

We also had...

Manzanas con hinojo y queso Manchego
Sliced apples and fennel salad with Manchego cheese, walnuts and Sherry dressing

Tortilla de Patatas al Momento
Spanish omelet with potatoes and onions cooked to order

Pimientos del Piquillo Rellenos de Queso
Seared piquillo peppers filled with goat cheese

Dátiles con Tocino ‘como hace todo el mundo’
Fried dates wrapped in bacon that you will want to eat every day
{How's that for a hard sell?}

Gambas al Ajillo
The very, very famous tapa of shrimp sautéed with garlic

Codorniz con Salsa de Romero y Alioli de Miel
Grilled quail with rosemary sauce and honey alioli

Lomo de Buey
Grilled hanger steak with piquillo peppers

Arroz de pato ‘Jean-Louis Palladin’
Rice with duck confit, duck breast, and foie gras cream

We had more than one order of a few of those!

Pastel Vasco con Helado de Leche Merengada
Basque cake with semolina cream, cinnamon-vanilla sauce and ice milk
{So, so very good}

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Compota de Manzana al Pan Perdido con Pedro Ximénez
Apple Charlotte with Pedro Ximénez & vanilla ice cream
{Not mine :)}

Helados y Sorbetes Caseros con ‘Carquinyolis’

Thank you, corporate Amex. :)


lelly said...

Hooray for new chapters!!!

Rachel said...

Wow--I am out of internet-land for a while and I get to come back to HUGE news! Good for you! Also, I have not eaten anything half that delicious in who knows how long. It all looks so delicious.

I'm excited to follow your latest adventure!

Jill said...

The most important thing is that YOU feel good about what you're doing, and since you do (hooray) then all is well!! It drives me crazy when other people have stuff to say about my big life choices (like when I was looking for a job with the school district last fall). I know they mean well, but they aren't factoring all the things I'm factoring and therefore are leaving important things out of the equation. I'm glad I didn't let them change my plans!