Wednesday, August 3, 2011

a shoe story (lyn)

I am meeting Gail for dinner to celebrate her birthday.  A long, black, clingy dress feels appropriate for the rainy weather.  As for shoes, I want something more interesting than black.  I find my rarely worn, 3-inch beige wedge Prada sandals, the ones I re-discovered in April, after years of non-use.  I put them on and love them all over again. I like the way I feel in them.

I get to the restaurant early.  It’s a place called Pranna (specializing in “modern southeast Asian cooking”).  It’s located at 79 Madison, the same address where I worked in 1995 when I was head of marketing for three soap operas. 

I get to the restaurant early, and already a hip bar scene is in progress.  The two stunning girls with whom I check in were toddlers when I worked here.  The space is unrecognizable as the non-descript work lobby it once was.  Glass, wood, seductive lighting and beautiful people have replaced the drab marble that was once here.

Gail arrives a few minutes after me.  As always, she is stunningly dressed, perfectly accessorized, and glowing.  We start talking as soon as she arrives, and for the next three hours, we share stories of husbands (hers), kids (mine), and everything in between.  Gail is a great listener, a wonderful storyteller, and an overall interesting person.  If she were a guy, and not married, we’d be dating.

We both order the exact same thing.  Surprisingly, restaurant week has been extended to restaurant month.  We start with an exotic drink called Pranna Sutra 
("ketel one vodka, white wine, muddled red seedless grapes, 
fresh lemon juice").  Neither of us drink very much.  Gail sips about a tablespoon and says she is “very drunk.”  I need at least two tablespoons for the same effect.

I eat most of the excellent flat bread that begins the meal.  Next, we have some magnificent starter of flank steak, cheese and cilantro (that I think is some type of salad green and eat the whole thing).  I wish I had the skills of a food critic to adequately describe the combination of exotic flavors that make this small dish sensational.  The chili-glazed prawns that follow are good, but more common. And the dessert, bananas drizzled with chocolate sauce in some kind of a pastry pancake, is excellent.  But it’s hard to notice the food when the conversation is so good.

Reconnecting with Gail after 27 years is like my Prada sandals.  I never stopped liking them; I just forgot to wear them.  And now that I am, I can only wonder, what took so long?

No comments:

Post a Comment