Saturday, December 16, 2006

Communication is the key

What a long week! Grades, progress reports, preparing for holiday assemblies and chorus concerts. It has been a week full of stress and very little cooking. Sadness!!! This time of year is always hectic at work. Never mind the holiday social and family obligations.

After the long week, I was very much looking forward to last night. It was my friend Fernando's birthday. He called me earlier in the week and asked if I would join him and some friends for dinner. He gave me the name and number for the restaurant (Fonda del Mar) so that I could call them. I did. During this phone call I was assured that there were many items on the menu that were wheat free. All I had to do was let my server know and the cooks would tell him exactly which items on the menu were safe. "This will be no problem." Perhaps a little naively I walked into the restaurant thinking this would be a great culinary experience. I quickly discovered differently. I was informed that this would be extremely difficult. The server brought me an appetizer: guacamole with veggies for dipping (cucumber and jicama). Actually, that was delicious. I have never dipped those veggies into guac. So tasty. Perhaps one of the better guacamoles I have ever had. Everyone else placed their orders and the food was brought out.

"I'm sorry, but all of our meat is marinaded ahead of time."

"Your marinade has wheat is it?"

"Yes, I'm sorry. We could give you rice and beans."

"But I called ahead of time to make sure. I was told there would be no problem. I was told he was writing a note in the reservation book about it so that you would know ahead of time."

He just shook his head.

"I'm disappointed because I did my part and checked ahead of time. If I was told this would be a problem I would have eaten before I arrived so that I would not be hungry while everyone else was eating."

"I'm sorry." and he walked away.

Here's the kicker: I ditched out on my staff holiday dinner because they were going for Italian. After the call I made to the restaurant, I chose to attend the birthday dinner because there would be food I could eat. Now I look antisocial to my coworkers for not attending. So after all of that I had a dinner of guacamole and flan. Did he bother to let us know the flan was safe? No. We had to ask. (I sure as hell wasn't going to assume.) In the end he didn't even have the courtesy to comp my appetizer. I literally had to excuse myself for a minute so I could go the the little girl's room, I was so upset by this. I was starving!!! To add insult to injury, the place was BYOB. I couldn't even order the margarita I was craving. GRRR!!!!!

So today will be better...damn it. It has to be. This whole week has sucked. Stress, food issues, emotional crap biting me in the butt. (When everything gets crazy I get super sensitive. All of my personal issues gang up on me and make me a very weepy girl.) As the young kids say: I was incredibly emo this week. Today will be different. I will do a few Christmas shopping errands, wrap gifts, relax, perhaps watch White Christmas, and go to my friend Margaret's house for holiday movies. Well, movies that take place during the holidays: Die Hard and Lethal Weapon. :) I love Margaret! I need to stop and get some food, though. They will be ordering pizza. At least this time I know ahead to bring my own meal. Tomorrow is family holiday party number one (Dad's side). We have to travel far. Very far. Crystal Lake. Oy! I am going to bring a side dish. Mom in her infinite wisdom suggested a quinoa dish. She is so smart. At least if I can't eat the other food I can have a very healthy quinoa dish and the salad that Dad is making (with homemade dressing.) I may even dig a brownie out of the freezer so that I can eat something sweet while everyone else is enjoying the Christmas cookies.

So...yeah. A sucky week. It is now behind me, and behind me it shall stay. OH! Very good news! Mike's book arrived! I am so excited! It looks beautiful. I am dying to bake. So many things I want to try. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies! Cinnamon Marscapone Flan! Coconut Pudding! Mike, you are going to make me fat!


Sheri said...

At least you're brave enough to get out there and try restaurants. I am out in the sticks, so I don't have a lot of options that I know of. I think I might start calling restaurants after the 1st of the year; I'm tired of being a food hermit!

Let me know how Mike's cookbook is - I am debating getting it myself.

Lynn Barry said...

I know you will love Mike's book. It truly is a work of art, isn't it.
Glad you got through the week and can put it behind you.

Mike Eberhart said...

Now Shannon, you can't possibly blame me for the calories! Then again, if it helps, go for it. he he he. Perhaps a better way to look at things is that the desserts will be a great reason to increase the amount of excercise in your schedule - which, certainly must be a good thing. So, desserts = good. I don't know about you, but the logic works for me. :)