Friday, May 28, 2010

Last Day in the Islands...For Now, Anyway

Today was a superb last day on Grand Cayman. We snorkeled for hours. The highlight was seeing these fish that changed colors before our eyes, depending on what surface they were above. Amazing and beautiful. The reefs right off our beach are perfect. I feel so happy and I can't wait to come back. This is the most relaxed I can remember being in quite some time. I might be wrong about that, but I'm too relaxed to worry about it.

Tonight, we ate at Agua, an outsanding, nay, OUTSTANDING, place. It ties with Morgan's Harbor for our favorite. Below are some pictures of us there. (I have been a silly shameless tourist taking pictures at restaurants on this trip, but I'm glad I did it.)

At left are Jack and Chris. Jack is growing up so fast.

Below is evidence that my appetizer was superb. I ordered a trio of Peruvian seafood preparations.

More Chris.

Might be my favorite picture of this trip.

How We Are Spending Jack's College Fund

Fine dining abounds on this island and there is no shortage of establishments that will nice you to death, serve you beautiful and delicious food and then present you with a bill on the order of magnitude of a small mortgage payment. Last night, we emptied our wallet at Luca, a pretty slick and swanky place. Tonight, I think we will compensate by eating at a local Kebab joint or a place called the Tim Buk Tu diner.

Below are some photos of our evening at Luca. (We do other things besides eat here, honest. But, the things are mostly underwater and your BloomingtonGirl does not have the proper digital photographic equipment to capture such activities. Stay tuned next week for underwater shots, that is if they come out...ah film. )

Jack and I before dinner. This might be your BloomingtonGirl's new favorite dress. Don't be afraid to say how much you love it, too.

Chris, happy at dinner. (Before the bill came.)

Jack, giving Luca two thumbs up. This kid loves good food.

More Jack. What can I say? BloomingtonGirl loves her kid. (Most of the time, anyway.)

A view from our table at the Swanky Luca.

Best mussels I've ever had. Hands down, no contest. The broth was a symphony of yumminess.

Chris looking not like Chris in his new reading glasses.

Mousse au chocolat. Beyond, Loyal Readers. Beyond.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

More from Paradise

Loyal Readers, it is once again cocktail hour in Paradise and I am taking a little break from our adventures today to write to you and share some pictures. Today, we drove to Rum Point, a little beach on the other end of the island. It is a very charming place with a cute little bar and grill on it. The snorkeling was supposed to be really great, but it was just okay. Turns out that the snorkeling right off of our beach here is much better. There are reefs all over the place, not too far out, with abundant and beautiful fish. The three of us spent a couple hours there in the late afternoon. Fabulous. I'm trying to talk Jack and Chris into diving, but so far, no luck. I was thinking of taking a "tourist" course here. You take a course in the morning and then can go for a relatively shallow dive in the afternoon. We'll see. I do intend to get my PADI certification in Bloomington in the near future. I'm hoping that Kate will get hers as well so we can go on diving trips. (C'mon Katie!) If not, I'll have to tag along with the Geigers next time they come down.

Here's Jack at the Rum Point Bar and Grill, examining an onion. He has decided to become a restaurant reviewer. It is rather hilarious to listen to his high fallutin' BS.

This picture needs little explanation other than Jack wanted to be the "Free" Jerk.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

More Grand Cayman Fun

Loyal Readers, here are some more photos from our vacation. Enjoy.

Here are Simon, the first mate of our sail boat yesterday, and Jack with the Conch shell that Simon found for Jack. Simon has 15 kids, 2 of whom were born on the same day to different mothers. Did I already mention that? Sorry, but I can't help myself.

Here's Jack at the (really awful) restaurant where we dined (and I use that term loosely) last night. The view was lovely but the food was quite bad. A rarity on Grand Cayman, I think, but we were unlucky enough to experience it. Tonight, better cuisine planned.

Here are Jack and Chris under the little structure on our beach this afternoon. We snorkeled a whole lot today, right off the beach of our place. It was amazing and so easy.

Your BloomingtonGirl and her Honey, happy after our little sailing cruise. It's good to be silly, isn't it?

Jack and Chris at said awful restaurant. I won't mention its name in case it is Al Fresco. The deep fry exhaust fan was pointed at the outdoor dining area. Seriously unbelievable.

Your BloomingtonGirl's happy, happy feet at our beach earlier today, while reading her favorite magazine (Vogue) and enjoying the day.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Grand Cayman

Loyal Readers, your BloomingtonGirl spent the afternoon swimming with Stingrays, snorkeling and relaxing on a catamaran as it sailed back toward the island. Now, she is sipping a lovely glass of crisp white wine and writing to you, Loyal Readers, in our incredibly well appointed condo overlooking the water.

Below are some photos from last night's dinner at a fabulous spot on the island called, well, I can't remember the name, but it was great. Something like Morgan's or you know, something like that. Two words. Whatever.

Anyway, it was very very pricey - like everything else on the island (a half gallon of milk and a box of cereal was $13.00 at the convenience store last night) but it was really delicious. We ate on a deck overlooking the water and according to Jack, the best feature was the "chicken entertainment". Chickens roam free on this island and mill about in outdoor restaurants, even the very nice ones.

We are on our way to sample another culinary delight at a place called AlFresco, also on the water. Hey, what isn't here?

Okay, now, we are back. AlFresco was pretty awful, other than the incredible location. We'll live, however, having eaten (albeit mediocre at best) food on a pristine beach at sundown. Can't have everything, they say, though I do continue to try to have everything. Guess I'm greedy, eh?

More later from this not-so bat vacation.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Over the Moon

This is the cast and me and the director of the Cincinnati reading of Over the Moon. More later, but for now, your BloomingtonGirl would like to express her amazement that this outstandingly talented group of people took up her humble script in earnest and made it sing. Wow! How did I get so lucky?

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

9 Tickets Left!

Loyal Readers! There are only 9 tickets left for my reading next week in Cincy. I am SO excited!!!

Monday, May 03, 2010

Party Pictures and a few Recipes

Good Evening, Loyal Readers! I just put up a website of pictures of our dinner party. If you are interested, click here. If you want to cook up a couple of the dishes that were served, click on any of the items below for the recipes:

Sunday, May 02, 2010

And a Good Time Was Had

Your BloomingtonGirl is a tired girl this Sunday evening, Loyal Readers. Tired, yes, but bathing in a most delicious afterglow of a most delicious dinner party. Last night, we hosted 22 people - Chris's current and retired partners and wives - for cocktails, a magic show and dinner. If I do say so myself, it was a smashing success. Preparations started on Thursday - planning the decor for three tables, ironing linens, grouping china/crystal/silver, etc. On Friday, I cooked for twelve hours straight (!). I have to say that although it was hard work, it was really enjoyable. On Saturday, I set the tables, arranged some flowers and did some last minute stuff while my husband did the guy things - got ice, roasted the tenderloins, etc. Promptly at six, people started arriving and the party was off to a great start. We hired a magician to do close up card tricks between cocktails and dinner (Steve Bryant - here's his website - he's amazing). It was simply a delightful evening of big fun.

You will agree, I am sure, that there is nothing better than being invited to someone's home for a dinner party - that is if you like the hosts and other guests and the food and drink are plentiful and good. People host parties too seldom these days. People think that they are too busy to undertake such an activity. I say that's Hogwash! Anyone can make time to throw at least one dinner party a year - even if you invite some friends over for pizza and beer and scrabble or dominoes. Your BloomingtonGirl encourages you, Loyal Readers, nay, she implores you to make an effort, no matter how busy you may be. Why? Because such gatherings spread good cheer and that is a very important thing to do in these angst-y times. Throwing this party made me so very happy, Loyal Readers, because I know that all of the hard work put into it made a difference in the world. A small difference, yes, but I am a true believer in FUN, and whatever I can do to spread a little around is my greatest pleasure.

Tomorrow, if time allows, I shall post pictures of the party along with my recipes for everything I served. But, for now, your BloomingtonGirl is off to get her beauty rest.

Saturday, May 01, 2010