Well the weeks just fly, don't they?! Here we are coming up on February and I have hardly processed January yet. It's been a great couple of weeks, lots of fantastic eating out, the excitement of Shannon and Adam heading back up north, and the possibility of a new member in my life. I wish I had the time and energy for all of the stories but I just don't! I am only going to be able to sneak these few in because I am home injured from trapeze class today- I banged my shin/ankle on the bar yesterday so hard that i have a welt and a limp. Poor me! So an extra hour and a half appeared! I suppose trapeze is as good a place as any to start....
I am getting so strong! I hardly notice it at home but all of a sudden in class things that i struggled so hard with at first are coming much more easily. I can climb no problem, even up to the tall trapeze bars, which was a challenge at first. It's one thing to just go up the silk rope, but to go up to where the bar is hanging ( swinging!) and hold on with your legs only while reaching to grab the bar....let's just say it's getting easier. We've been doing a lot more upside down stuff, too, which is super fun. Tricks where you wrap you arms up in the silk and flip upside down, hanging and swinging from the trapeze bars and also this one cool flip where you go from upside down on the bar to sitting- i just did that one on the tall bar for the first time yesterday. Scary as hell, i tell you what.
Another fun thing that happened, ummmm, i want to say last week but coulda been the week before... Common Ground. I have been listening to Kelly talk about this place forever so, one even when she came home sore and i was sore from class, i suggested we hit the hot tubs. It was pretty incredible. Community bathhouse, one giant hot tub and a sauna. It's all outdoors, on this particular evening it was about nine thirty when we got there, lightly raining with a breeze- amazing. There was a plastic clock on a string hanging against one of the walls and it was swinging in the breeze, clicking against the wall, gave the whole place a kind of Dorthy in the tornado feel. Absolutely amazing. Kinda spendy, but well worth it. I will be back.
Along the same lines as my weekly brunch program with Shannon (now defunct, of course) Tonia and I have started treating ourselves to a fancy dinner about once a month, it started with a gift certificate I got from Savoy for Christmas to Laurelhurst Market, a kind of fancy meat centered restaurant. We got sort of dressed up and totally went all out, 5 courses, including dessert, wine, fancy cocktails, the whole deal. And got out for like forty buck each before tip. Granted we did have a gift certificate to take care of part of it but still. That is the greatest part about Portland cuisine- there is so damn much of it that is good, it has driven down the prices to reasonable levels. Almost all of the places around here you look at are like this- amazing, creative, local food, for not so much money. Love it. Last night we had our second date, well deserved by both after last week in school ( ahhh!) at Biwa. This is a Japanese restaurant that is, coincidentally, in the same building that I take trapeze. So I have gotten to oogle over the diners ( and the cooks!) through the windows for a few weeks now. When I asked Tonia what she was in the mood for, she requested healthy and not so expensive. I thought of Biwa immediately. Their menu is based on Japenese "bar food" sort of small plates and snacks that you would order in japan with your sake at the sake bar. We got a full array of things, an awesome Asian pear and dikon radish salad with rice vinegar, gyoza, Japanese style fried chicken that came with mustard so spicy it could possibly melt your sinuses- so good! Hanger steak, pork belly, rice and pickled plum taco, and some amazingly creative cocktails. My first one had some kind of sweet potato booze, plum wine, and i have do idea what else. Tonia burned away the beginning of a cold with a super lime cocktail and then a super ginger one. Oh, and the mustard was helpful in that area, also. The dessert was the highlight of the meal for me, and possibly one of the highlights of my entire Portland dining career. They had a half of a small orange peel, scraped out and filled with house made satsuma jelly, topped with a cascade of satsuma segments that had been tossed in plum wine and a chiffonade of Japanese mint, I can't remember what the word for that was- started with an s. Served with a glass of plum wine on the side. It was amazing, so fresh and light, the flavors went together perfectly, I was thoroughly impressed. And again, we got out of there for around forty bucks each- no gift certificate this time. Not bad!
Ok, off to work now!