Friday, August 22
I got up and enjoyed a sweet but moderately nutritious bowl of gluten-free Leapin Leamers cereal.
I had to run errands for our vineyard dinner tomorrow. I drove over to Michael’s printing for our menus, Trader Joe’s to look at flowers (I took notes in my little writer’s note pad), Haggan (which I couldn’t find anything that would work for centerpieces), the Fred Meyer in Sherwood, which, again, didn’t have anything for my centerpieces, and finally the Fred Meyer in Newberg – where I scored these adorable and beautiful plants with tiny red, orange and green-yellow peppers. I then found some green-white hydrangea. I also found these beautiful green ceramic pears with silver-gray stems that would also look beautiful.
The cellar had just finished bottling for the day and were offering “first off’s” to staff, the wine they couldn’t sell that went through the bottling line first. There was perfectly good wine inside, in any case, a few of us went down to the cellar and picked out a number of single vineyard Pinot noirs, some Syrah and Gamay noir, as well as single vineyard Chardonnay.
When I got to the winery there was a lot of work to do. Others were cleaning up while I washed out our hurricane lamps and staged things for my flower arranging tomorrow.
I returned to the office to check emails and then headed out to Dundee to pick up a few coolers from another winery.
Driving home, I had every intention to change and go for a run, but Susan had called and convinced me to meet her and her mom for dinner downtown. So, I emptied the wine from my car, put it away in my cellar under the stairs and changed for dinner.
We were going to go to Nuestra Cocina up on Division and 22nd, but there was an hour wait. So we went across the street to a new wine bar called Bar Avignon. It was chic and cool inside. We took a table by the window. Her aunt, uncle and family friend joined us. I shared an order of luscious green olives and prosciutto and sweet peaches, then an order of gazpacho and their local farm green salad, which was really fresh and delicious. I enjoyed a glass of Soter rosé with it.
I tried to pay for my portion, but Susan’s mom wouldn’t have it. That was very nice of her. I sipped on a cup of Stumptown coffee while they passed around a couple desserts.
After, Susan, her mom and I went into the frozen yogurt shop next door. I ordered a cup of the chocolate yogurt topped with a little coconut and shared it. We proceeded toward the New Seasons on Division, where I bought gluten-free donut holes by Ener-G, a couple more of my new favorite gluten-free pizza crusts, organic, free-range brown farm eggs, organic sausage links and these cute, small recycled notepads.
I have become obsessed with little notepads that I carry around in my purse, leave in my car and stock in a pocket inside my workbag. I take a little notepad everywhere I go, just in case I get an idea I need to write down. I use the little notepads for more. Like when I was in Trader Joe’s in Lake Oswego and needed to note which kind of flowers would work best for our vineyard dinner. I jot down notes of things to do, people to call or meals I should make for the week. I write down names I like that may either become characters or children. I write down addresses and phone numbers, but, mostly, I scribble thoughts that come to me when I’m driving down 99 West or I-5 or when I’m in the middle of doing something else but don’t want to lose that train of thought, that perfect description in my head, that crazy thing that just happened as I turned that corner on 21st and Clinton, where the two guys on their bikes nearly hit a parked wagon with the front windows slightly open where two shiatsus practically wrestled each other to fit their sad little pink tongues through the slight open crack of window.
There was a cute, smallish guy putting his groceries down on the conveyor belt as a tall, round girl with friendly violet eyes framed in old-school black and mother-of-pearl glasses checked me out. I handed her my check card, excited about the gluten-free donut holes. The cute guy looked at my little notepads and said they were cool. I told him I was a writer. When the check-out-girl gave me my receipt, I smiled happily as the cute guy kindly offered, “good luck with the gluten-free, and the writing.” I smiled back, “thanks!”
At home, I finished the place cards for the vineyard dinner. I watched the last five minutes of Jaws 4 (or Jaws: The Revenge). I had no choice. I had watched the first three this week. I didn’t even know there was another one after the 3-D version. This Jaws didn’t blow up. I was disappointed.
I burned some Moss Garden incense, not that it really smelled like moss. It was actually a blend of sandalwood, benzoinum, patchouli and spices. Not sure what the spices were, even with my trained wine professional’s nose. It was Japanese. Manufactured in Kyoto and distributed in Boulder, Colorado. I have been slightly obsessed with Kyoto. Not the same way as I have been about Tibet or Vietnam. But enough so that I read a whole book on the tea service in Kyoto and the spirit of reciprocity there, how everyone is keen on gratitude, even if only in a matter of politeness and gesture. There is what is called ‘the spirit of the gift’, to which Kyotans give little gifts to patrons who dine in their tea houses or restaurants, the gifting concept carrying over in many areas of their culture.
Anyway. I burned the incense to relax. It’s a kind meditative gesture to myself, really. I read a little and headed up for bed later than I had intended. I made a note in one of my little notebooks that I was now going to bed rather regularly at 1:30 a.m. It started off at 11:30 p.m. That had been my bedtime for quite some time. But then the late hour for me crept to midnight. Then 12:30, always reading or writing, stretching my day as long as I could to get in all of the time I needed after work to workout, cook dinner, get some writing done, meditate and unwind, read and then turn in, which no sooner turned to 1:00 a.m. And for the past couple of weeks, this has proceeded to dip into that too-late pool of 1:30 a.m. I made a note that I simply could not allow this pattern to continue. I could not let the minutes charge on to 2:00 a.m. I had to curb the restlessness, the need for more time.