It's raining; it's pouring

That's an exaggeration. It is decidedly not pouring, but we have a STORM WATCH in effect for tomorrow. I'm quite excited about it. If ever anyone needed a STORM WATCH it was the the dessicated, brittle inhabitants of California. To say nothing of our plants. Our plants are giddy with excitement.

So, what we have here is a meteorological special occasion. I thought I'd celebrate by actually writing something here. As you can see, the Blog Bully has been otherwise occupied ever since he got hitched, so the blogging enforcement has gone all to hell. Self-discipline isn't my strong suit. Well, I say that, but I haven't yet killed any of my upstairs neighbors, nor have I had any chocolate cake since early January, so perhaps I am maintaining a more rigorously Spartan lifestyle than I give myself credit for. 

For my next trick, I shall transcribe something from my very own notebook (oooooh), which is made of paper (aaaahhhh) and ferried about in my purse in the manner of our ancestors who thought they Might Need to Write Something Down.

Is it a cheater move to steal month-old material from yourself?  Quite possibly. However, as I have already explained, there is zero enforcement around here. It is a lawless state. Let the self-plagiarism continue, say I.

A restaurant review of sorts, from January 3, 2014.

After a day during which I felt entirely unproductive and rather hideous, I came home and started over. I took a bath, complete with hair washing (a rare occurrence, since evening hair-washing always results in Silly Hair in the morning, no matter how dry I think I have gotten it). I put on a black full-skirted cap-sleeved dress, which may be too youthful for a woman of my advancing age, but which A) is excellent for twirling and B) seems like a thing Audrey Hepburn might have approved of. I tied a striped silk scarf around my neck, which, for me, constitutes an act of real sartorial daring, and, having transformed myself into a person I was no longer ashamed to be seen with, took myself on a date.  (When one's boyfriend lives in another country, one does what one must.)

I got on the J-Church and made my way to Frances, one of those San Francisco restaurants of such unrelenting popularity that I've never even bothered trying to get in. However, being 1) a solo diner, 2) after 8:30pm, 3) in a restaurant with counter seating is a clever strategy and, after a surprisingly brief wait, I was seated.

I then had a perfect meal.

  • They sell affordable wine by the ounce, served in measurable carafes, so you are charged just for what you drink. (Ultimately, in case you wondered, I had five ounces.)
  • Kale salad with apples, candied walnuts, parmesan, and fennel root
  • Duck breast with white beans, tangerines, and brocolini in some sort of delectable reduction
  • A thing called lumberjack cake made from pear, dates, coconut, kumquat, and something else, which I assume is fairy dust. Lumberjack cake is what you want your house to smell like when a friend drops by on a cold afternoon, you just didn't know it because, until now, you have never heard of lumberjack cake.

Meanwhile, the ambient sound was of convivial murmuring--not the usual San Francisco restaurant shouting--and the music was low but recognizable, my favorite restaurant music volume.  The room was warm and I was reading Robert Benchley who is very droll and an excellent dinner companion. I decorously dimmed the glow on my Nook, so as not to be an Atmosphere Ruiner for others. I was entirely content and wearing a silk scarf in a pseudo-Parisian manner, which is about as much as I could ask of an evening.

I do quite enjoy dancing as if no one is watching when, indeed, no one is watching.

Even the bathroom delighted me and is one I would happily have in my imaginary beach house--all clapboard and plantation shutters. The lighting was so flattering that you could return to your table in absolute certainty that your dining companion (should you have one) was pretty lucky to have you to gaze upon. There was a beautiful floral bouquet and cloth hand towels. The music piped into the bathroom is set louder than in the dining room such that--I confess--I was moved to do a little dance in front of the mirror. I do quite enjoy dancing as if no one is watching when, indeed, no one is watching.

In short, I ate nothing that was not entirely delicious and I had a splendid time. Thank you, Frances. I did not believe the hype, but you merited every bit of it.