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Saturday, June 23, 2007

A little exposition



Last night's post was an attempt to throw something out there about food, but I've actually left out a lot from the past few days. Most of it is not food related. We didn't really cook that much as we were often on the go, running out to hike up a mountain or canoe in a cove.

I can't remember if I've mentioned this, but the reason why we get to spend the summer in California is that our friends, Doug and Rebecca, are spending the summer with their two daughters in Australia doing fieldwork with an Aboriginal community. These being some of our favorite people on earth we wanted to spend some time together before they left, even though they'd be busy preparing for their trip. Lucky for us Lane can just pick up his studio and move it into the garage here.

As it happens we also have some friends who were getting married at Lake Tahoe the weekend before Doug and Rebecca were planning to leave. So a few days after we arrived in California we all drove up to Tahoe. This was my first time there and I was knocked out by the brilliant blue-green lake, the twisting cedars, the towering pines, and the smell of sun-warmed needle beds. We went hiking up to Elk Lake and canoeing at Emerald Cove with our hosts during the day and then Saturday night attended the wedding.

Last week's wedding reminded me a lot of my sister's wedding two years ago. Both took place in spectacular settings, my sister's on the beach inCabo San Lucas with Los Arcos in the background and our friends' wedding under the pines and next to the lake in Tahoe. Both were intimate, with just close friends and family. Both were elegantly simple (what decoration do you need in a setting like that?). Beautiful bride and handsome groom, and the bridesmaids got to pick out their own dresses. The ceremony Saturday was beautiful and perfect for the couple and we loved seeing friends we hadn't seen for some time. Doug and Rebecca watched Jasper for us. I got to wear my fancy blue dress from Switzerland and Lane wore my favorite tie. Great music (Dave) and dancing. From my perspective it was all a big love fest.

Oh yes, the cake -- it was a white cake with a pale, strawberry-infused buttercream frosting and layers of custard and fruit decorated with fresh flowers. Don't you love it when the cake is both gorgeous and delicious?

One meal from the past week stands out and that was Doug's surf and turf dinner of grilled Murphy steaks and butterflied shrimp. I need to learn how to make these Murphy steaks. As far as I know Murphy steaks are just made with garlic slivers stuffed into slits, but these steaks came with this thick, black marinade. Clearly I'm going to have to do some research.

Something else I need to figure out is how to get more kyaking into my life. The night after the wedding we returned to the wedding site (where the bride, groom, and some of the guests were staying) and I got to go out for a paddle. After about 10 minutes or so I forced myself to return to shore and jump out before I embarassed myself by monopolizing the kayak for the next three hours. Another 30 seconds or so and I know my brain chemistry would have been alterered and I'd turn into one of those desparate junkies who sells their New York City property just to rent a place in Truckee and kayak every day. Even writing about it is a bad idea. I'll say no more.

4 comments:

janeannechovy said...

Okay, that's it--our next Scary Feminist gathering needs to involve canoeing/kayaking. Can you just picture it? Someplace not to hard to get to, so we can bring all the necessaries for serious outdoor cooking? 'Cause I don't know about you, in my book cast-iron dutch ovens and backpacking don't really mix. Summer 2009?

Janet M Kincaid said...

Kayaking is the best! We go as often as we can and have kayaked in some lovely place. Elkhorn Slough down near Monterey is lovely, as is the Gualala River up in Mendocino County. Suisun Bay in Solano County is also nice. Out here, we occasionally go on the Potomac. Regardless of where, it's quite relaxing. The very best is kayaking when the moon is full. If you can, go up to Tomales Bay in Point Reyes (Marin County) for a full moon kayak. The outfitter we used was/is Blue Waters Kayaking.

Luisa Perkins said...

Oh, I LOVE to kayak. There are many good places to do that up by us...can we tempt you once you're back?

Can't wait for the fruits of your Murphy steak/black marinade research; P just got himself a bran new grill, and he's raring to go.

Swizzies said...

Duuuude...spending just that bit too long in a kayak is what made me abruptly move from Manhattan to Wisconsin. I'm totally not kidding.

Kayaking is why I married Scott.

Be very careful with The Power of Kayaking.