Sunday, June 1, 2008

Summer Vacation Begins in Baltimore

Photo of Izzy's "bubbles" at Sushi Ya

When Saul arrived home on Thursday afternoon, we packed our suitcases (last minute packers that we are) and began our journey down to Baltimore to watch Sami recite her French poem for the competition at Barnes & Noble. She won third place for her class. The sound is not that good, and Jessica promised she would get me the actual text of the poetry with a translation, but that will have to be in a future blog.


While I was at Barnes & Noble, I checked on the book Jake Matlin recommended in his comment on my blog about ants. I discovered that the book is $108 and is 796 pages long! It is an actual textbook about ants. Silly me. I thought it would be something allegorical like Kafka's Metamorphosis or ironic like Woody Allen's Antz. What course did you take that required reading a book like that, Jake? You did warn me it would be a little esoteric. Do you still own it? And, can I borrow it?

Ari left work a little early on Thursday so he could meet us in Baltimore and attend. We celebrated Sami's award with a delicious dinner at their favorite sushi restaurant, Sushi Ya, where Izzy is known as the "bubble girl" for her love of caviar.

Ari drove us back to his condo afterwards. Saul and I drove him to work on Friday morning and then went back to his condo. He was too busy to leave early on Friday, so just the two of us drove his car to Baltimore for a delicious Shabbat dinner courtesy of Alex. Because of the volume of traffic and the number of accidents along the way, the drive took us two and a half hours. We might have gotten there sooner if we had driven from home. In ordinary traffic, it takes from 45 minutes to hour. The menu was three kinds of grilled fish, grouper, tuna, and salmon. The tuna was peppercorn coated in a delicious sauce and the other two were marinated and also in a delicious sauce. Alex never uses recipes, but his sauces, dressings and marinades are all wonderfully complex and unique. The salad contained grilled shiitakes, mango, avocado, cucumber, pepper, and tomatoes. He said there was a secret ingredient in the delectable mashed potatoes. Dessert was two pies Jessica had bought at Trader Joe's--key lime and strawberry rhubarb with whipped cream and fresh blackberries. We also ate the other half of last Friday's watermelon that I had brought along, which was still wonderful. We were joined for dinner by Alex's sister, Naomi, and his assistants Abby and Paige.

We drove back to Washington with leftovers for Ari, arriving about 10 p.m. Saturday morning, Ari helped me with the NY Times Sunday Crossword Puzzle and we finished it in an hour. It contained the names of all the actors who have played James Bond. I would never have known George Lazenby, who only played Bond once before they brought back Sean Connery, but Ari knew. The theme was "Spy Glass," which turned out to be a martini glass that was depicted by connecting the circled boxes (you know, "shaken, but not stirred"). We ate out both breakfast and dinner and took a walk along the harbor in Georgetown. We also went to see the new Indiana Jones movie. We found it to be really enjoyable and funny, if a bit disjointed and, of course, unbelievable. The horror in this one is ants. Who knew?

This morning, after Jess went shopping with us at Seven-Mile Market (a glatt-kosher supermarket) for the food for the Rap for Israel Celebration next Sunday, she drove to DC to attend the Israel Celebration on the National Mall with Ari, Alex and the kids. There certainly are a lot of celebrations this year because of Israel's 60th anniversary. I think she decided to go this morning because the weather was so beautiful. I am assuming I will get the photos and post them within a few days. Saul and I would have joined them, but we needed to be back home to attend Eden's first birthday party. We awoke at 6:30 a.m. this morning to get everything done, so by the time the party was over, we were exhausted and took a late nap, finally back home in our own bed.


Ari said...

Dans notre ville
de Jacques Charpentreau

Dans notre ville, il y a
Des tours, des maisons par milliers,
Du béton, des blocs, des quartiers,
Et puis mon cœur, mon cœur qui bat
Tout bas.
Dans mon quartier, il y a
Des boulevards, des avenues,
Des places, des ronds-points, des rues,
Et puis mon cœur, mon cœur qui bat
Tout bas.
Dans notre rue, il y a
Des autos, des gens qui s’affolent,
Un grand magasin, une école.
Et puis mon cœur, mon cœur qui bat
Tout bas.
Dans cette école, il y a
Des oiseaux chantant tout le jour
Dans les marronniers de la cour.
Mon cœur, mon cœur, mon cœur qui bat
Est là.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Marilyn! I did a report on it in college for some class--it wasn't for an entomology course, but I used to write weird analogous papers like that in my English and Poli Sci classes back in the day, hence my stellar GPA. But there's no way the book that I had was that long, at least from my somewhat hazy recollection. I only concentrated on a few chapters and got to throw in some quotes, but I do remember having Gelman Library order it in from another DC school--probably Georgetown!

Definitely not worth $08...sorry about making a mountain out of an ant hill!