Friday, August 26, 2005

Lunch at Mela, Dinner with the Grands

After getting everyone off yesterday & doing some writing, I headed out for lunch at Mela. I listened to the sermon J's boss brought back from his trip to California. It's interesting enough, but quite facile. I guess that's good...not everyone is looking for theological meat & many are only ready for oatmeal. J really likes it, but I think it isn't rich enough in language, or something, for me. She likes the emphasis on good works. My grandmother told her last night at dinner that she's a Methodist. LOL!

On the way to my restaurant, I saw J's Bug, parked at a new barbecue place. Realizing that today is Stevo & Eric's last day at the plant, I figured they may have gone there for a goodbye lunch, so I stopped in. Sure enough, there my sweetie sat with a bunch of guys from work. No Eric, but I bid Stevo farewell...and got to see J. I always love the chance to see her in the middle of the day. The food looked good, but I had work to do, so I headed on to Mela.

The change they have wrought in that place since Marriott bought it is incredible. It is, rather than Midwest steakhouse/supper club-themed, utterly lovely, with asymetrical lines and colorful art glass. The food, it turns out, is fabulous. I had some chorizo flatbread pizza with a splash of lime, a beautifully-arranged asparagus-spinach salad with grilled chicken, and the best sorbet I've ever had. It was lime basil sorbet & it was astonishingly delicious. Wow, the stuff dreams are made on! The service was pretty good, too, although I had ordered beef on my salad & got chicken. Oh, well.

After lunch, I hung out with the boys at home. They worked on homework at the table while I got started on dinner. By the time J got home, I had the key lime pie for today's farewell potluck chilling in the fridge & was pulling the spaghetti chicken casserole from the oven as she walked in the door. I love to cook. I turned off Meet The Parents, which I had been watching as I worked. I loaded up some ingredients, the already-made things, a bag of salad, and my cookbook. We summoned the boys back downstairs & headed over to the grands' house.

My grandmom showed off her gorgeous new roaster & got the boys ensconced in the living room with Far Side books & tortilla chips. Then, we grown folks talked in the kitchen. J told them about her surgery, which is scheduled for when I'm in school, & they will be there with her when she has it & will take her home. She has to be in at 6 in the morning, so maybe I will be able to be there. Class doesn't start until later in the morning, if I get the classes I am planning on. I prepared fried corncakes, delicate little pancakes of white cornmeal & regular flour, with J & my grandmom nibbing as I cooked. I think I'll try making them with yellow cornmeal next time. I usually prefer it. My grandmom added some of their 93 y.o. neighbor's home-grown tomatoes, with a side of mayo, and a bowl of red grapes to the table & we sat down to dinner. We always have such a good time with them. After dinner, my granddad got out two little keychains that record short messages. He had gotten one for himself & one for each boy. I am so glad my grands like my boys & my wife so much. Pie was over the moon with his, but Boot was too sleepy to be very interested. He had dozed off in my granddad's recliner. These early mornings are rough on that boy.

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