Oh, So That’s What Life Was Like

(Post 134 of 263. Thanks again to those who participated in the Fundrazr. As I mentioned in the post announcing Bast’s passing from COVID, I thank everyone for your generous donations to the original Fundrazr campaign, which resulted in sponsored 263 posts. I will continue to honour the commitment to write those 263 posts, but I will not commit to more. The link above is to a new campaign to help Bast’s family.)

Today was my first “normal,” by prepandemic standards, day since March of 2020! I ended up having two social events! Mondays are my best chance to get a day off, just because of the cycle of my clients’ schedules, so I worked hard all weekend to clear my desk so I could enjoy my day!

Some fellow digital nomads had organized a brunch at a newish restaurant fairly near me, Alma Lima. I’m way overdue to meet new people since most of my favourite people left during the pandemic. 🙁 I don’t know if I made any new friends today, but at least I put myself out there. This was my first time back at a proper restaurant! The food and service were great, but my favourite thing was that they have a bottomless cup of good coffee. That’s what makes me happy, not fancy coffee drinks, not tiny cups of espresso, just a bottomless mug of coffee that lasts the whole meal.

Their menu was high tech! You take a photo with your phone and that opens up a page with the menu.

They had traditional breakfasts like chilaquiles and molletes, as well as a variety of egg dishes, pastries, bagels, and more. I’d had chilaquiles and molletes this weekend, so I went with a Croque Monsieur, a ham and cheese sandwich bathed in béchamel sauce, followed up with an excellent plate of fruit with so much on it — blueberries, strawberries, apple, grapes, and, of course, tropical fruits like pineapple and papaya. The restaurant also kept giving us free things, like a watermelon/lime “shooter,” biscotti, a lime and mint slushie, and a chocolate truffle with our bills! I will definitely be back since they are walking distance from me.

One of the ladies asked me what I was going to do after. “Swim, read a few pages for work, maybe have a nap, and then go bowling,” I replied. “Sounds like a great day!” Indeed. So, this is what I’ve been working for beyond the mortgage…

I got home and jumped in the surprisingly chilly pool. What a treat after a hot walk! I then plopped myself in front of the fan upstairs, B at my feet, and read for a few hours. I really don’t consider that work-work.

My Uber showed up late to get me to bowling, but the driver knew the city and a shortcut with less traffic, so we did make it in time. Despite enjoying two Indio beers, I played one of my best games ever, 331 over three games, two of which were over 100. Muscle memory?!

I did some window shopping after, popping into Suburbia to look for dresses and Flexi for sandals, but struck out at both. I was properly hungry by this point, having had only a little bit of birthday cake at bowling as ‘lunch,’ so I did another “before” thing and popped into PF Chang‘s to order a pad Thai to go. I love how they park you at a table to wait and bring you a beverage in one of those pretty glasses.

Unlike last week, I had no trouble getting a ride home, so my food was still piping hot when I got in and after spending some time with B who needed attention after being left alone twice in one day!

Dinner was great. There are a couple of other places to get pad Thai, but this one tastes the most like what I’d expect for the dish. I have it with shrimp and tofu, no egg.

Today did me a world of good, as did how I ended it — by putting a deposit on a (day) trip next month! I’ll be going out of state, so it definitely counts as a trip!

So just like that, after 18 months of introversion and focusing on rebuilding the foundation of my life, I am reengaging with the world.