Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Odel didn't believe me when I told him how much Luna missed him.

Who can look at this photo and believe otherwise?? When he sat on the couch, she jumped right up for petting and attention... when the petting stopped, she just snuggled up to his hand to enjoy his presence. Too cute!

Yesterday was an interesting juxtaposition of two related activities, one sublime, the other far less so. It began with lunch with Sydney and Frank, who were running errands in Tucson. We met at Vivace, one of our favorite Tucson restaurants.

We've met here a couple times in the past, and we all have developed favorites from which we don't deviate. Frank and Odel ordered Fish Soup (maybe it had a more sophisticated name, but I don't remember it...) and they each had a glass of Zinfandel. The wine was poured with a healthy hand - very unusual for a restaurant with a not-inexpensive wine list. Made me wonder if they are feeling a bit of the economic pinch and adding a little more bang for the buck? The absurdly high prices for a single glass of wine in many restaurants has annoyed me for several years - it was nice to see a glass of wine that would actually last you through the end a meal.

Sydney and I are unable to order anything other than the totally, completely incredible Spinach and Cheese Soufflé. This photo can't do it justice.

The souffle is the consistancy of a cloud, a parmesan cloud, something an angel would eat. The sauce is perfectly thickened, perfectly flavored... this is a dish I haven't seen on any other menu, so I CAN'T pass it up when we eat at Vivace. It is definitely in my Top Ten favorite meals.

Sydney and Frank had brought a birthday present for Odel - a selection from Trader Joe's of his favorite snacks and cookies. I took several photos of the gift opening and smiles, but one or another of the participants would have killed me if I posted them - eyes rolling, mouths agape, body parts captured in unfortunate poses - all the worst of spontaneous photography! The opening of presents netted Odel a (presumably) free Tiramisu for dessert though. It was a great lunch.

When Odel came home from Memphis, we had been at Catalina State Park, without a sewer hookup, for a week. When we don't have a sewer connection, I prefer to fill our 100 gallon fresh water tank and run off that (rather than a water hose) so I have some idea how much water has run through to our waste tanks. Yesterday morning, we had about 20 gallons left, which means our tanks are approaching full.

Since we have paid for another week here, we needed to make room in our holding tanks. Before we did that, I wanted to do a few water intensive tasks: some cooking, and a sinkful of hand washing.

I started the morning by making a double batch of Salsa Veracruzana, a Mexican/Spanish tomato-y sauce that is great with fish, shrimp and chicken. It freezes well, so I like to make a big batch at one time.

After lunch, I made a batch of Larry Sorenson's Pea Salad (when I contacted him to see if he would mind if I posted the popular recipe here, he confessed that it was his grandmother's recipe: Larry Sorenson's Grandmother's Pea Salad). I don't know what makes it so appealing, but I love this salad - and all the ingredients are either likely to be on hand or are simple to find. It is a good substitute for potato salad, a bit less starchy. By the way, the LeSueur brand peas (don't substitute) are not imports - they are from Le Sueur, Minnesota, the original home of Green Giant (which I learned when I googled and swiped this photo off the internet). Is it naive to think the peas where actually grown in the USA?

Once the cooking dishes were washed, there was still water left, so I did my handwashing. When I pulled the plug on the rinse water, it drained ever-so-slowly, slower, slower, slower... then, a loud gurgle, gurgle, gurgle came from the bathroom sink as an air bubble was forced from the gray water tank via a high point. Still no water in the bottom of the shower (the low point), but it was close enough for us... we battened down the moveables, closed up the slides, brought in the awnings, took down the sun screens, and wallowed on down to the dump station to relieve ourselves of accumulated wastes. I'm sure you all would enjoy an illustrative photo, but I was busy cleaning the toilet while Odel did the dumping - sorry, my bad!

That is one element of RV living that isn't readily apparent to beginners... the close and intimate relationship you develop with the "background" realities of modern life. RV'ers have a good idea of how much energy their appliances use, of how much water is needed for a shower or to wash dishes or clothing - and the understanding that what comes in needs to go out again. I thought about the luscious taste and texture of the souffle on my tongue as we dumped the black and gray water tanks, and laughed about how one day could present so clearly the two sides of the subsistance equation.

1 comment:

  1. Non RV'rs just can't understand.

    We're having our 40 gallon tanks switched out at the factory in July to 62 gallons. YIPPEE!!!