$260. Chicken feed, I know, but seems like a lot when you don't have it. And when you do, it pretty much just flies right out of your pocket. But I had a bit left over from taxes, a bit left over from my mom's little gift to me, and there were a few things that I wanted to get. So I did what any red blooded American would do on a nice day like today: I went out and shopped! All so patriotic of me, yes indeed!
So, what did 260 bucks get me? Not a whole heck of a lot, but I spread it around some and picked up a few things, like a new discontinued Kodak digital camera at Walmart. A small hamburger supper at Wendy's. I upped my membership at Hollywood Video, had a nice filling lunch at Kim's Teriyaki and picked up couple of propane cylinders for creme brulee and bbqing. Grabbed a one way bus ride to Freddies and bought a nice couple bags worth of groceries, including some long range pantry ingredients, like mushroom flavored soy sauce, cardomon powder, Mirin, a bottle of Marsala and a small bag of turmeric. Picked up a half way decent bottle of cabernet, Meridian, at Rite Aid and bought a couple of Hershey bars with almonds to take to work. And, the really big deal of the day, I bought a bag full of lamb shanks at Farmer Georges to use in a very tasty recipe I found in Nigella Bites. Just can't wait for that.
It was money well spent. The walks that went along with all that spending were pretty wonderful, too. The walk last night came with a grand sunset attached to it, and today's walk was beyond stellar, the day being about as gorgeous as a day could possibly be. It was so fine I wouldn't be surprised to see a bill in the mail charging me for it. Those walks always come with small adventures, or take me to places where I see folks that I know. Today I ran into one of the moms I know from the branch. Then I hit up an estate sale and came across a cockatiel for sale and found out that that bird had the same name as me. Damn near made a sale just on that small point alone, but I knew that I would be bummed out to come home and find my namesake in Guapo's mouth, so I passed on the offer.
The biggest thrill of the day though was finally hitting up the much heard about butcher shop on Bethel, Farmer Georges. I had to to tell those counter folks that I've lived in this town for almost twelve years and had never stopped to shop there. I have to think that says alot about where I'm going with my cooking. It's one thing to want to stretch out a dollar, but it's another thing entirely to want to eat well. I think today was the little food revelation that I needed, cholesterol count be damned. The meat in that place was all too awesome. Just the beef shanks alone will get me back there next weekend. I see a major pot of pasta sauce coming out of my kitchen soon, with those beef shanks playing a starring role.
So, what to do to top a day like I've had today? It sure has been grand, no doubt about that. I woke up late, watched Standard Operating Procedure by Morris, his latest documentary on the excesses of war in Iraq. After I dropped that off I picked up Mamet's Red Belt and a copy of the Dark Knight. Need to see what all the fuss is about with Heath Ledger's (poor son of a bitch) roll as the Joker. I know that my lawn is beginning to resemble a movie backlot jungle (the neighbor's cheese eating chihuahua gets lost wandering around in it) so that means that I must drag out my push mower and get to work. But you know, I would rather just read a couple magazines, or wile away the hours here at the computer, or even take a nap. Maybe I'll bake a cheesecake, or cook up a pot of beans. I think that it's waay too early to consider having cocktails on the veranda, but I know that a nice chilled glass of chardonnay or three will be fine later on.
It's great to have a day off when the rest of the world is working. Made all that walking and errand running and spending a bit more pleasurable. Yeah, all two hundred and sixty dollars worth of spending! Mighty grand time, yes indeed!
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