Friday, November 23, 2012
How Do These Things Happen?
Too sick, too busy, I did not make a Thanksgiving dinner.
Yet our refrigerator and shelves seem to have accumulated all sorts of holiday food goodies, from wines to biscotti to cheese cake, a slice of pumpkin pie, some turkey and garlic sausage dressing. Not to mention breads of various kinds. And cheese. And beer.
Partly it's because el V went out to get milk and brown rice yesterday morning. I thought I'd make a black bean and wine and pork stew with rice and salad so he'd have a good lunch or something, since we wouldn't have dinner at the le Bistro until after nine PM. Sending el V to the stores alone is a classic man shopping for groceries routine. The things he comes home with.
The other part was all day neighbors dropped by to drop off a little something.
And then I brought home most of my dinner from the Bistro because I remain without appetite still. This cough and drainage leaves me sleepless which makes for further appetite suppression.
What a strange Thanksgiving this one was. It wasn't bad, not by any measure, just kinda -- strange.
Contributing to the dislocation of it all, le Bistro was mobbed. Not by the people who'd booked the prime time dinner period solid long ago. But crowds of couples and groups begging to get in, all day, and past midnight! Nothing remotely like this has happened before. Who were these people? The Bistro had no idea, other than "Tourists from all over the place." El V asked some of the people seated around us where they were from -- everywhere: a guy from Long Island with a young woman from Australia. Two lesbians from New Jersey. Germany. And Asians -- packs and packs of young Asians, mostly Japanese and Chinese, but Japanese by far the largest number. You have never seen Asian people in le Bistro, at least not before.
"We wanted to go somewhere nice, and this looked nice."
The staff was dead by 9 PM, and yet, it went on and on.
OK, quite a few of the restaurants in our neighborhood weren't open yesterday at all, but a lot of them were. Yet, there were no crowds for them, and there were empty tables. What was up? Nobody seems to know.
I wish we'd skipped this meal, but el V was determined that we had to have Thanksgiving dinner and that I not make it, even though because of work deadlines we couldn't join our friends. It was so crazy, so factory-line (they managed it so efficiently, in spite of everything) it wasn't in the least bit civilized -- and civilized is why we so prize le Bistro. It couldn't be enjoyed for anything beyond anthropology.
What sent so many people out to eat this year instead of cooking at home? Were they gearing up for the Black Thursday-Friday Madness that shows our nation at its most unmasked hideousness or what? I understand that NYC was filled with tourists and destination visitors -- and they too may well have been gearing for the Madness of late last night and today. Also so many aunts and grandparents and so on in LI, Queens, Staten Island and New Jersey were wiped out and / or in other ways not able to host a Thanksgiving meal this year. But these people seemed almost entirely from other parts of the country, so -- I don't know!