Another Day in the Neighborhood…

Sometimes life's tragedies bring us closer to others who have experienced a similar shock or reached that realm of sadness and fear, and who have come back to push through it. We end up meeting them somehow, out of all the people on this earth, and connecting, and sharing, and motivating each other to conquer other hurdles, while reminding them and ourselves where we've been and how we should be able to get through anything.

I spent the past couple of days in Vancouver meeting with friends I might see again soon, and others of whom the next reunion is unknown but feared to be too far away. The souls and true essence, no matter how frou-frou that might sound, of these friends are unbelievably magical, and I'm blessed to know them.

Now I am back at Bauhaus in Seattle drinking tea, eating a bagel, and nursing yet another cold. Yes, I'm taking my vitamins. Yes, I'm covering my head. No, I'm not drinking a lot and partying all night long. So, what gives? All I know is that my immune system is begging me for spinach and Phở and yummy soups.

Last night, when I got back to Seattle, I had dinner at Charlie's on Broadway and dove into the yummy, spicy Philadelphia Pepper Pot Soup accompanied by some mediocre sticky nachos. Also shared some chicken strips with super delish wing sauce (on the side) with Shane. He's right. They are the best. Though I still cringe when I see the word "Cajun" on any menu. Is it… really? Surprise me.

Monday evening in Vancouver, Shannon Heth of HethPR, organized a wonderful dinner for me and my friends at Chambar, a cozy and beautifully designed Belgian restaurant on Beatty. With such a lovely menu, it was hard to decide what to get, but I think we did a pretty great job. Some opted for their own plates, but a few of us shared the Lapin aux Pruneaux (Madeira braised rabbit cannelloni, morrel jus, toasted walnut & grape concasse) as well as the Foie de Canard 'Villa Loraine' (Spiced Foie gras terrine with Port reduction, Kriek granita & truffled brioche French toast). The Foie Gras was rich and creamy, and the Rabbit was wild and nutty. Add to that the OMG-this-is-AMAZING Congolaise Moules Frites (Mussels cooked with a tomato coconut cream, smoked chili, lime, and fresh cilantro – with fries & mayo). mmmmm… The evening ended with a  complimentary tasting of Sortilège Maple Whiskey. Tasting similar to Iced Wine, it was easy going down and made the perfect finale to a beautiful gathering. The next day, a few of us took the Aquabus over to Granville Island for a picnic of dried salami (buffalo, elk & a chorizo from Pamplona), manchego, bread, olives & berries. It was such a beautifully sunny day. The pigeons and seagulls were pretty happy about it too.

Aside from nursing my cold for the rest of the afternoon, I'll be taking a little break to see Teatro Zinzanni's "Under the Gypsy Moon." Yay! Very excited about that. Taking off tomorrow for NYC, so will keep you posted on future festivities as they arise. In the meantime, life is short, believe in and listen to yourself, and Bon appétit!

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