Unexpected Freedom

Greetings from the Laguardia airport!  My gate has been changed twice… I had to, in fact, change terminals… good thing I got here early.  I’m really looking forward to this week.  Although we spend most of the days on the beach, it’ll be unbelievably relaxing even if it rains a lot of the time. I can’t even remember the last time I got more than 6 hours of sleep, read something for pleasure, didn’t feel stressed… it’s going to be a great week 🙂

My mysterious breakfast date yesterday was the one and only Sarah!  It’s sort of hilarious that we’re just meeting now; I’ve met both her mom and her sister, and she met Ari when he played with Third Eye Blind in Boston.  I knew we’d get along fabulously, and we did! We sat at City Bakery eating and talking, and before we knew it two hours had gone by.  Once again, I was blown away by how great the food blogging community is.  Everyone I’ve met is so nice and genuine, and I’ve made some great friends since I posted my first entry last August.  Let’s keep up the good work!

Sarah and I both got pretty much the same thing: low-fat vanilla yogurt with fresh fruit (cherries, lychees, pineapple, honeydew, canteloupe) and honey-flax granola.

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After I left Sarah, I headed to the park to eat my lunch.  I bought a huge amount of packed spinach with seitan, sliced cucumbers and daikon, and hummus. The hummus was both dressing and spread… thanks again to the “Hummus Man” at TJ’s who convinced me to the the Mediterranean flavor.

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I also brought some carrots:

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And some Late July cookies (review to follow ASAP):

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A woman was handing out Coke Zero on the street, and never one to turn down something free, I enjoyed most of the can 🙂

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I didn’t remember to pack a fork to eat my salad, so I went into a deli and bought these Chimes Peanut Butter Ginger chews.

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Yes, you read that right. Peanut. Butter. Ginger.  Believe me, this combination works! Each chew has only 16 calories and a reported 0g fat (which means <.1g; obviously peanut butter has fat).  Ari wasn’t a fan of these and my friend Jenny said, “They’re certainly different… I wouldn’t buy them again, but they’re not bad…”  But really, trust me on this one.

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At work, I had an iced skim latte:

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The pizza chef also came up with an appetizer special: flatbread (made in the pizza oven) stuffed with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil.  This was so good… I hope this becomes a regular on the menu!

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He also gave us a flatbread stuffed with bolognese, which I didn’t try because it’s made with ground beef.  Give me some with shrimp, corn, and cheese, however, and we’re in business!

It rained torrentially every 10 minutes or so, so business was really slow.  This meant that I got to leave really early!   I was so happy I was literally skipping through the restaurant… I haven’t been able to see Ari for more than a few minutes in amost a week, so I called him as soon as I could leave and we went out to dinner.

We went to Virage, a bistro-style restaurant on East 7th Street.  When we sat down, we were brought a dish of garlic-marinated olives:

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We split a bottle of Chalone Vineyard Chardonnay.  I’m not usually a chardonnay fan, but this was some of the best I’ve best I’ve ever had.  (It was also the least expensive on the menu! I love when cheap doesn’t have to mean “bad.”)

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We ordered two entrees to split-  Moroccan Striped bass with sauteed saffron & asparagus risotto, julienne vegetables, yellow & red tomato.

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Pan Roasted Salmon (which we had grilled instead) with saffron & asparagus risotto, julienne vegetables, yellow & red tomato:

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The bass was my favorite while Ari preferred the salmon, so we ended up switching back and eating what we liked.  It worked out so nicely.

MIA: 16 Handles-style nonfat soft serve: peanut butter, cheesecake, Dutch chocolate & vanilla w/strawberries & chocolate chips.  I left my camera and sweater at the restaurant and only remembered when I dug in to take this photo!

We went home and watched Zack and Miri… I really liked it! I thought it was a lot better than other movies in this style that have been so prevalent recently.  Some of the Clerks/Kevin Smith actors were in the film, too, so if you’re a fan of those movies you should check this out.  If you’re over 18 and a mature adult.

Well, we’re getting ready to board so I’m going to say goodbye.  I’m not sure when I’ll have internet or what the posting situation will be like on this trip (definitely not 100% documentation), but I’ll be around, don’t worry. I’m also very behind on your blogs right now, but as always, I’m thinking of you.

You know you love me,
XOXO
LVP

(Just kidding.)

Edited to add: please disregard my previous Smooth Away rave review… my legs felt like sandpaper two hours later AND I had to shave again. Boo hiss.

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13 responses to “Unexpected Freedom

  1. Aww so great that you and Sarah could meet up!

    I believe the peanut butter and ginger combo, after all they put ginger in peanut butter sauces at Thai restaurants, right?

  2. I loooved Zack and Miri! Very cute. Have a fun trip!

  3. I love you! And I love your drawings and peanut ginger chews! Have a great weekend sweetie!

  4. OMG I love City Bakery, they have such an amazing salad bar! Have a GREAT trip:)

  5. I love those peanut butter ginger chews. Here’s the proof: http://snackreligious.blogspot.com/2008/07/ding-dong-bells-are-gonna-chime.html

    Glad someone else has blogged about them!

  6. At first glance the photo of the carrots looked like a bag of goldfish! 😀

    I love your drawings… too cute. 🙂

    Have a great trip!

    ❤ ❤

  7. pan roasted salmon! gimme!!!!

    have an awesome trip beautiful!

  8. Blogger meet-ups are so fun 😀 Love your drawings…lol. I should have done one of my parfait to make up for lacking photo.

    have a GREAT trip!

  9. Enjoy your trip! And make sure to stock up on some sleep! 🙂

    Blogger meet-ups are great. I’ve never had a “date” with a blogger that wasn’t awesome!

  10. How fun meeting up with Sarah!! Sounds like you guys had a great time!

    I love the food drawings 😉 Glad you liked the movie – how did you like Justin Long? Haha!

    Have a FANTASTIC trip!!

  11. I’ve seen (another brand of) peanut butter ginger chews. Was curious but didn’t try; maybe next time!

    I though Zack and Miri was pretty good too. I didn’t really high expectations, so I guess I was kinda pleasantly surprised.

    Have a great trip!

  12. haha i love the drawings 🙂 too cute!
    ohh those cookies sound delicious !

  13. wow! food porn alert! All these wonderful dishes…and pb ginger? yes, please!
    hee hee, cute drawings!

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