I don’t have my picture uploaded yet to prove it but last night I did get to meet the fabulous and charming and ever-so-real Kerry Madden, aka mountainmist I was already an adoring fan before meeting her and even more so now. That voice you read on her blog? That’s the real Kerry.
But before I got the chance to meet Kerry and her darling sister, I met up with d-michiko-f. Debbi picked a place to eat in Menlo Park. Because I am a picky eater I looked at the menu online before we went. They had a Monte Cristo sandwich, one of my favorites. Oh man, I couldn’t tell you the last time I had one of those. Alas, I was to be denied because when we got to the restaurant, they were closed. This wouldn’t have been a big deal except, well, not too long ago Debbi tried to take me to the same restaurant, with the same results! LOL. Luckily Debbi remembered a casual coffee shop chain not far away. Perfect for us to eat and gab and wait for Kerry. As we drove to the new place we passed a great many other restaurants that looked inviting and most of which were actually open to serve us. We kept commenting as the restaurants zipped by us. “We could go there. Or there. Or even there.” It was like the Universe was tossing little bread crumbs our way and we just left them for the pigeons to eat.
You know, all those restaurants we passed were probably a sign and we ignored it.
We arrived at the place which will not be named, both starving. Even though I wasn’t going to get my Monte Cristo sandwich, it was okay. I could give in to my other craving – a hamburger. Mmmm. I love hamburgers. I love red meat. A lot.
First backstep a bit. We have a cafeteria at work that is, for lack of a better description, ONE OF THE WORST PLACES TO EAT EVER! Really. I go there to connect with the few friends that are still at work and almost always have a grilled cheese sandwich which doesn’t taste like a real grilled cheese sandwich but is, for the most part, edible. Every single time I stray from it, I am disappointed and often sick to my stomach. And we are not talking a cheap cafeteria either!
Now a sidestep. My husband and I like to eat out. We don’t do it as much as we used to but still. We reward good service. I always ask to speak to the manager and compliment them for excellent service. We tip very well.
The flip side of this is that sometimes we get clunkers.
Back to the story of last night’s meal.
The menus arrived. Debbi’s coffee and coffee cake arrived. And then we waited to order. And waited. And waited some more until I stood up and waved my hand to get someone’s attention. Then we waited for our burgers. And waited. And waited some more.
And when they arrived I wished we could go on waiting. I tried a couple of bites and had to stop. I don’t know how Debbi managed to stomach a couple more. They were the most appalling excuses for burgers that I have ever been served and that INCLUDES burgers in my crummy cafeteria at work.
So I did something I very rarely do. I made a bit of a scene. (hulabunny , you would have been so proud of me. )
Actually I am getting ahead of myself. We moved the plates to the other side of the table and watched the busboy clear tables all around us. Reset the tables. Look at us and our plates pushed to the side and IGNORE US until I told waved to get his attention and told him he could come take this horrible food away.
And then I made a scene. And Debbi tried very hard to melt under the table and pretend she didn’t know me. And I could tell she was starting to wonder why she invited me to eat with her but I couldn’t stop. I was SO frustrated with the lack of attention to us and the horrible food and the fact that we were still starving and we had Kerry coming at any minute.
When the manager came over he wanted to know why we didn’t tell him something was wrong. Hello? Maybe because no one ever came by to check on us? Sheesh.
The funniest part of the whole thing though was when Kerry and her sister arrived (and Debbi quietly explained what had happened to us) suddenly the waiters were falling all over themselves to give good service, even displaying the bottled waters as though they were bottles of fine wine.
After visiting with Kerry and her sister Debbi and I hightailed to In-and-Out burger for a real meal! You can read Debbi’s version of the story here.
I am waiting for our dinner guests to arrive, my in-law and my brother-in-law. The smells from the kitchen (from which I am banished) smell delicious. Here’s what we are serving:
WINTER SOLSTICE FEAST
December 22, 2007
Baked mushrooms stuffed with herbed fennel duxelles
Salad with balsamic mustard vinaigrette
Gruyère Cheese Gougères
Beef Wellington ala Ramsey
Herbed potato galettes
Chocolate mousse and assorted sweets
Yes, I am a lucky, lucky, woman to be married to someone who loves to cook as much as my husband does.