Saturday, December 10, 2011

dining with gail and robyn (lyn)

Last night a friend of mine cancels last minute to see a screening of SHAME.  Gail says she’d love to come.  The screening is at 7. A few minutes later Gail emails and invites me to dinner.  Her email ends with,  “Save your points.”  This won’t be diner fare.

I send an email back politely declining.  I’m still recovering and eating mushy foods.  I arrive at the screening dressed in jeans and a hooded sweatshirt, not expecting to be dining out.  Gail wears a white furry short jacket and heeled boots, adding to her six feet.  Her blond hair flowing, she looks stunning. 

The movie, Shame, is painful to watch.  It is a harrowing story of a sex addict and is bleak from beginning to end.  Despite my original intention of eating only the insides of a Fairway chicken potpie, Gail and I decide to grab a bite.  We need something to lighten our moods.  Gail suggests Frankie and Johnnie’s, one of New York’s best steakhouses.  “It’s right near here, let’s go.  I never cancelled the reservation.”

I am the most underdressed person in this busy restaurant.  My stomach has been a little queasy and I am still tentative about solid foods, but the food that passes our table looks great.  I consider ordering a pasta dish, but really, who am I kidding?  I love steak and I’m at a steakhouse.  Gail and I split a salad, both get the small (eight ounce) filet, and share a side of creamed spinach.  Everything is excellent but my stomach is not ready for the richness of the foods.  I’m in the bathroom more than I’m at the table.  Poor Gail.  I end up taking most home, but am still grateful for the engaging company.

Today I have breakfast and lunch with Robyn; the experience could not be more different.  Robyn, unlike Gail, and unlike me, has little interest in food.  Sure, she eats, but if she didn’t have to, she’d much prefer spending her time doing something else. 

We are going to Soho to see an 11am screening of The Artist.  I’m running late, and soon it’s time to leave.  I grab a container of yogurt and a stainless steel spoon.  I pick up Robyn and she does the same (except she a plastic spoons, prepared for just such an eating experience).  We have breakfast on the #6 train, somewhere between 59th Street and Spring.

After the screening we shop around Soho.  We roam in and out of many great stores, two that I have never been to before but will certainly visit again: C Wonder (opened by Tory Burch’s ex husband and offering clothes and home goods, all reasonably priced and preppy in style), and If (a big space filled with gorgeous, edgy, expensive clothes in muted colors).  I love shopping with Robyn.  She has an excellent fashion sense and easily mixes fabrics and styles.  She is the perfect shopping buddy: honest with spot on opinions and no judgment of me.  “Another black top?  Really!?   Don’t you already have five?“  "Isabel Marant jeans?  Those are too lightweight for winter.”  “That black skirt is nice but nothing special.”   “This is a signature piece and something worth spending the money on.”  That something is a $580 tissue-thin pleated cape by Issey Miyake; I proudly and reluctantly pass.  Lunchtime comes and goes, but around three we are hungry.  We stop by Le Pain Quotidien and each grab a latte and a gigantic chocolate chip cookie.  We eat lunch as we stroll the streets and stores of Soho. 

I enjoy my meals with Robyn and Gail.  The ambiances may be different, but the company is equally as good.

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