Yes. Today is my 50th birthday. And like all birthdays, the focus is on food. My “official” food celebration will be in a few days when my brother comes in to town. But I have a dilemma – do I please everyone else or please myself with the choices?
He hinted that a big juicy steak would taste good. He used to live in the area and I knew that he was subtly suggesting we go to The Pine Club — a local institution that has not changed in 50 years. It does not accept credit cards even to this day. Yes, they have great steaks but I am not a steak eater and that is about all they serve.
Dilemma. Do you try to satisfy others or be selfish because it is your birthday? I decide to go for the selfish angle. Well, not altogether. I am up to the challenge of finding something everyone can enjoy.
My criteria for a good time? Well, I decide that it is important to me to have the restaurant be lively and fun. Light and airy. I don’t like quiet restaurants that seem stuffy. Those are for old people.
I decide on a trendy restaurant called Coco’s located downtown. I like going downtown. I make the reservations. But then my husband brings me back to reality and reminds me that the last time I was there, I did not enjoy my meal. I had lamb and it was nothing special. I only had lamb because they didn’t have what I really wanted — fish. They did not have any fish other than salmon and I was not in the mood for salmon. Back to the drawing board.
Then I remembered the Indian Restaurant that I went to recently. I have been there three times and every meal was a winner. Of course!
50. A half century. It is a good time to pause and reflect on what is important to me. Someone once asked me if I had a dream. I said yes. I’d love to live in a foreign country for one year. Maybe England or Italy (although I don’t speak Italian).
I want to live simply, maybe get a job in a bakery. Live among the people and melt into their culture so that I experience things that tourists never see.
It is a dream, but one that could happen if I choose to make it happen. It’s all about leaving your comfort zone and taking a risk. You can always talk yourself out of it. I hope that does not happen.