Headlands Coffeehouse, Fort Bragg

Well, hellooooo, old friend. There’s another coffeeshop just around the corner from Mendocino Hotel, but as she was headed there, a car pulled up and a woman stuck her head out and said, “Do you know any place that you can get breakfast in, around here?” Self told her, “Lansing Street” and she said, “We’ve just been, and all they have is outdoor seating, and it’s too cold!” So self said, “Fort Bragg,” and then self decided that she would head to Fort Bragg, herself.

Whoa, the drive there. This is what she remembers: IMPATIENT TRUCKS. And it was spitting rain. She passed the Mendocino Coast Botanical Garden, and Nit’s Café, and the Depot, but everything seemed closed. Then she made a right on Laurel and saw: YAY! People going in and out of Headlands Coffeehouse! She found a parking spot and went in and ordered a cappucino.

Not 10 minutes later, she heard someone saying, “Oh, hi!” and she looked up. It was the same woman who had spoken to her in Mendocino! And she said, “We just followed you here!” The woman and her husband had driven up from Santa Rosa and were staying at Little River Inn. For some reason, the woman thought self was a local, but self told her she was just visiting. “I used to teach at Mendocino Art Center,” though, self said. The woman asked if self was an artist, and rather than get into it, self said yes.

Anyhoo, that is not the real point of this post. The real point is: as she sat in Headlands, sipping her cappucino, she got to a part of The Birthday Boys (p. 138) that made her say: Holy Cow, I am so glad I persevered through all the earlier chapters. Because it’s Lt. Bowers’s chapter (Birdie) and here’s where the real suffering unfolds.

It’s all very well for Robert Falcon Scott to lament his sad fate (being beaten to the South Pole by Amundsen), but he is not the one hauling ass. He is not the one getting frostbite. It is Birdie and Dr. Wilson and the young whippersnapper Cherry-Garard who have to trek the frozen, sunless wasteland, to perform an experiment on DIET that Robert Falcon Scott ordered them to execute. This Robert Falcon Scott was definitely crazes, while the three men have spent six nights in a howling desert of ice.

Finally, the three debate whether or not to continue.

Birdie (p. 139):

“I happen to believe we can stick it.” I was speaking no more than the truth, having always found that willpower overcomes all adversities. One just has to believe that it’s within one’s spiritual domain to conquer difficulties. That is not to say that I don’t recognise there has to be a time to submit, possibly a time to die, merely that I’ve never yet been taken to the brink.

Bill (Wilson) cheered up after this and waxed on about the penguins. I must say they lead terrible lives, in that their undoubted maternal instinct leads more to infanticide than nurturing.

Self ordered squash soup for take-out, so she could enjoy it in the privacy of her room. Holy Smokes, the car was filled with such a delicious smell, she literally floored it from Fort Bragg to Mendocino, she just couldn’t wait to have this soup!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Mornings in Cork

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is MORNING:

  • For this week’s photo challenge, publish a new post with an image that means morning to you.

Self’s idea of a perfect morning is waking up in Café Paradiso in Cork.

It means a good, hearty Irish breakfast with scones and croissants and butter and cream and jam and yogurt:

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One of the great pleasures of staying in Café Paradiso is, in addition to the great FOOD, the selection of art books in the rooms.

And dear blog readers know about self’s fascination with windows, right? These are the windows in the Blue Room:

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The Blue Room, Café Paradiso, Cork

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Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Room: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is ROOM:

From the four walls that currently surround you to the infinite potential of space, this week we’d like you to show us your take on room, rooms, or a room.

Here is a picture of self’s room in Café Paradiso, in the city of Cork.  She arrived here from Ballyvolane House yesterday afternoon, in pouring rain.

She was lucky to snag a place here, just last week.  There are only a handful of guest rooms above the best vegetarian restaurant in all of Ireland.  She got “The Red Room.”

In love with her room, in love with the city

In love with her room, in love with the city

All self did in The Red Room was read and write and drink tea.  And eat, of course.  There were two delicious chocolate truffles in the fridge when she arrived.

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She had breakfast delivered to her room.  The card explained what her breakfast consisted of:

Breakfast in Her Room! The goodies were placed in her fridge last night, except for some fresh pastries which were waiting outside her door this morning.

Breakfast in Her Room! The goodies were placed in her fridge last night, except for some fresh pastries which were waiting outside her door this morning.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Leaving Ballyvolane (Boo)

It is fitting that, this morning, it is pouring rain.

She had a huge Irish breakfast:  yogurt, lashings of cream, whole milk, rich coffee, stewed pears and prunes, huge nutty Irish bread, soft butter, fresh orange juice, poached egg — yes, amazing how all of that could fit into self’s not-so-teensy anymore tummy.

There are some really fantastic books here, so self inquired whether there was a bookstore roundabouts, and she was told there is one in the nearby town of Fermoy.  Here’s one she enjoyed browsing through:

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Self has never heard of Darina Allen, but learns she is the founder of the Ballymolae Cooking School.

Where can self sign up?

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Claremont, Day 4: Gorgeous

Mood:  Relaxed

Weather: Gorgeous

State of Mind: Happy

Breakfast:  Some Crust Bakery

One word to describe self’s life right now:  Fulness

Claremont, Day 4

Some Crust Bakery, Claremont Village

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Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

ONE # 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

First, a digression:  Today, self and The Man went to see the first screening of American Hustle.

J-Law is just a-DO-rable!  Simply adorable!

Amy Adams was of course hot.

Bradley Cooper was the exact same speeded-up dude he played in Silver Linings Playbook.  Only this time, he was an FBI agent.  Many of the funniest scenes in the movie were his.

But Christian Bale.  CHRISTIAN BALE.  Since self had just seen him in Out of the Furnace, she couldn’t quite wrap her mind about this new Christian Bale iteration.  But — he was magnificent.  And also the only member of the cast whose Noo Joi-sey accent was firmly in place, from first to last.

The accent thing was quite a crucial thing in this movie.  Alas, self has finally spotted a chink in the J-Law persona:  Her accent was the messiest in the movie.  But self feels so chary in pointing this out.  For J-Law has the most hilarious scene with an exploding microwave.  Not to mention, she brings such vulnerability to her role.

And now to — the ONE!

Breakfast # 1 at Broiler Express in San Carlos: 1 egg, 1 pancake, and a strip of bacon.  All for $3.95!

Breakfast # 1 at Broiler Express in San Carlos: 1 egg, 1 pancake, and a strip of bacon. All for $3.95!

After the movie, we went to The Man’s favorite breakfast place:  Broiler Express on Laurel Street in San Carlos.

This time, when they brought her order, the pancake had mouse ears!

BWAH. HA. HAAAA!

Self’s pancake never had mouse ears before!

This was the very first time!

Self’s face broke out in a huge grin, she just couldn’t help it.  And the waiter was grinning, too.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Good Morning 3: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

So self is still in Bacolod, the home of wonderful brewed coffee, hot piaya, puto, and other breakfast delights. When she saw the WordPress photo challenge of the week, her first thought was: MADE JUST FOR SELF!

Here are some photos that capture breakfast in her Dear Departed Dad’s hometown:

Brewed Coffee at Café Uma is always served with muscovado and a petite piyaya!

Brewed Coffee at Café Uma is always served with muscovado and a petite piyaya!

Papaya for breakfast, Happy Valley Resort

Papaya for breakfast, Happy Valley Resort

Having Breakfast in Dearest Mum's Sun Room (adjoining her bedroom)

Having Breakfast in Dearest Mum’s Sun Room (adjoining her bedroom)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Good Morning 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is:

SHOW US A PHOTO THAT SAYS “GOOD MORNING!”

Here are three different takes on the theme:

Farmers Market, Ferry Building, San Francisco:  Held Every Saturday morning

Farmers Market, Ferry Building, San Francisco: Held Every Saturday morning. Here you can buy 30 different kinds of specialty salt, a hundred kinds of herbs, and all kinds of cooked food ranging from grilled lamb to Italian sausage.

Dawn Breaks Beneath the Window Curtains (After a Sleepless Night in Bacolod)

Dawn Breaks Beneath the Window Curtains (After a Sleepless Night in Bacolod)

The Famous Manapla Puto (Rice Cakes) from Manapla.  Self decided to try the "Cheese" Puto (Name is somewhat misleading:  the puto contains no cheese.  The "cheese" on the label refers simply to the color!

The Famous Manapla Puto (Rice Cakes). These are “Cheese” Puto (Name is somewhat misleading: the puto contains NO cheese. The “cheese” on the label refers simply to the color!)  These are really great with brewed coffee!

 

 

Good Morning: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge is “Good Morning.” Ah, mornings are absolutely self’s favorite time of day.  The day is all possibility, and her thoughts are clear.  Here are three iconic “Good Morning” memories:

The vaporetto stop on Ca' San Toma, early morning

The vaporetto stop on Ca’ San Toma, early morning.  Self had made arrangements to be taken to Venice’s Marco Polo Airport from here.

Self's breakfast at the Bacolod Organic Market, where they sell 10 different kinds of rice, all manner of organic coffee, and pumpkins/squash.

Self’s breakfast at the Bacolod Organic Market, where they sell 10 different kinds of rice, all manner of organic coffee, and pumpkins/squash.

Sunrise, Bantayan Beach, Dumaguete

Sunrise, Bantayan Beach, Dumaguete

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

 

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Fresh 2

Still musing on the WordPress Photo Challenge this week:  FRESH.

As the guidelines state, there are two ways of looking at the word “Fresh” :  It can be “a state (new, recent, previously unknown) or a taste or sensation (cool, sweet, invigorating).”

Self was trying for photographs depicting “a state,” but ended up showing her favorite bakery, Pamplemousse (because their croissants are so divine) and Bacolod food (again) and also flowers (again).

Pamplemousse on Broadway, downtown Redwood City:  Self's All-Time Favorite Bakery!

Pamplemousse on Broadway, downtown Redwood City: Self’s All-Time Favorite Bakery!

Self's breakfast at the Bacolod Organic Market, where they sell 10 different kinds of rice, all manner of organic coffee, and pumpkins/squash.

Self’s breakfast at the Bacolod Organic Market, where they sell 10 different kinds of rice, all manner of organic coffee, and pumpkins/squash.

Our neighbor a few blocks down has an ever-changing flower arrangement on her front gate:  Hearts in February, Clover in March, and so forth.  This was from the previous summer.

Our neighbor a few blocks down has an ever-changing flower arrangement on her front gate: Hearts in February, Clover in March, and so forth. This was from the previous summer.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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