Sunday, July 12, 2009

My way and the highway*

So I wouldn't post photos of the eggs before because they weren't made the way that I wanted to -- with a little bit of Romano cheese mixed into the yolks. But yesterday I corrected that. And my mother doesn't know what she missed out on. They were delicious, in my opinion. Oh, and this batch of eggs peeled perfectly. Even after time in the fridge.

But let me rewind things. The eggs were the last thing I made on Saturday. I started off making another batch of the Spicy Lemon Marinated Shrimp. And then I cooked up some boneless, skinless chicken thighs -- salt, pepper, tarragon and some white wine. Then I made the eggs. Oh, and a pot of brown rice. And everything was complete by 9 AM. Then I did some cleaning.

Why this fury of activity? Because yesterday was the one-year anniversary of my aunt's death. My original plan had been to go out on Saturday night. But then everyone seemed to be busy. Typical. So then I decided that I would go out on Friday night instead but I was so tired when I got off of work and headed straight home. And by Saturday? I decided that going out alone was not a good idea.

Yeah, not a good idea. Not that I have a problem with going out alone. I've been doing it quite a bit for a number of years. Of course, I could have gone to Sacto but I just wasn't feeling up to the drive. And besides, I'm an independent woman and all that other shit. As long as I have myself, I don't need anyone else. And so last night I sadly remembered that Jill Scott sang, "There's just me. One is the magic number."

And then this morning I awoke and proclaimed, "There's just me. One is the magic number." And I got my ass dressed in one of my boho outfits -- dress worn as a top over jeans with flip flops. Then I told the cats, "Peace out, bitches!" and hit the road.

The first stop was Sebastopol. Because I needed products from beekind. Really.

Originally I had planned on backtracking to Petaluma and picking up the Bodega Road west but then the lovely woman at beekind suggested that I continue into Sebastopol to check out this tea house, Infusions. Oh, and then I may as well check out the market as well since it was right across the street. Infusions? Cool place even though I didn't have anything there. And fitting with the California thing, they have meditation sessions there.

I left there in search of an ATM. Just in case I saw something at the market I liked. Not that I was planning to buy anything there.

But then I got to the market and the Bohemian Farmers Collective had a stand. With a name like that, I just knew I had to buy something. (Oh, and now Sepastopol is quite possibly my favorite town in Sonoma County.)

Chard and zucchini from the Bohemian Farmers Collective, organic blackberries and boysenberries from Sebsstopol Berry Farm, Bodega goat cheese from Yerba Santa Goat Dairy, and Santa Rosa plums. Sorry lost the card for the plum place.

At this point I decided to stay on 116 out to the coast. Glad I did because if I had gone the other route, I would have missed all of the above. Oh and I so want to stay at the place that offers horseback riding on the beach. Yeah, those dark spots in the last photo are horses crossing the highway.

The next stop was Pt. Reyes Station. It's been nearly a year since I've last been there. Really quite ridiculous.

Selection of cheeses acquired at Cowgirl Creamery.

Yes, I know that I can get some of the products from Cowgirl at Berkeley Bowl. Yes, I know that Cowgirl has a shop in the Ferry Building in San Francisco. But I don't really like the Ferry Building. Kind of like how I don't like certain farmers markets. And the drive to San Francisco is not as pretty as the drive to Pt. Reyes.

On the way home, I got to go through one of my fave towns in Marin County -- Nicasio. I don't know much about the town but those few seconds I've seen of it driving through somehow resonate with me. Oh, and you have to wonder about a town that has a building named "Druid's Hall."

If I'm going straight to Pt. Reyes from the East Bay, I take Sir Francis Drake through San Anselmo and then turn off near San Geronimo to head for Nicasio. On the return I never go that way. Instead I turn off Nicasio Valley Road onto Lucas Valley Road -- which is where you'll find Skywalker Ranch. I have a pretty good idea where the property is even if you can't really see it from the road. But that's not important because today I saw a fawn grazing at the side of the road. If I could have pulled over safely, I would have taken a photo for Beth.

As I headed past the last Marin exit before getting on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge (There are eight bridges in the Bay Area. And most of us try our best to never have to cross them. I know. Silly.), I remembered that back when I was kid and we were leaving Marin County, I'd say to my aunt, "Hey! Don't you need to check in at home?" She would respond, "Oh my goodness. I almost forgot that I needed to take you home." For those of you not familiar with the area, the last exit is San Quentin prison.

Driving across the bridge, I thought to myself that today had been a really good day. And then I thought about my birthday two years ago. My aunt suggested that we try a different restaurant once a month. We didn't do it. My aunt reminded me of this last year when we were out to lunch for my birthday. We promised that we would in the coming year. Then six days later she died.

Last August I tried to start up the monthly girls' night once more but that was a frustrating experience. Why? Probably because we were talking about too many schedules. Today? I remembered that list of places that I'd like to take day trips or weekend trips to. Places that I could drive to. In the last year, I have only scratched one place off the list. So I'm thinking at least one a month. But now that it's summer and the weather is so good, I'm thinking that I might be able to fit in more than one a month. Because today I managed to not feel sad given all the crap that has happened over the last year. And that's always a good thing.

Oh, and the other important thing learned today? The importance of letting a blog post marinate. Because that Saturday stuff? Yeah, I wrote it last night. But once I decided to head out today, I decided that posting could wait. Just in case. I'm glad I did. To me it's proof that I'm pretty good of taking care of me when I need to.

*I clocked almost 200 miles on the road today.


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