by guest author Nicole Hodge
It’s all right there in the name of this goddamn city. I have never lived in a place quite like this. It is rough and wild, beautiful and rugged. There’s a sense of lawlessness that is both attractive and frightening. The community is strong, and Vallejo is proud. But, there leaves a lot to be desired.
Last night at dinner we spoke about the now closed Nantucket, located at the bottom of the Carquinez Bridge in Crockett. It was my father’s favorite place to go. To this day I really do not understand why. He was a fisherman, by sport, and loved seafood. For some reason he was taken with the Nantucket. As a young man I was never much of a seafooder. I did like when he would Continue reading “SOME DAYS I RECALL”
“Hi, my name is Tom.”
“And I am a cheater.”
Collective loud gasp.
Yes, last night I cheated and ventured outside of Vallejo for dinner. In celebration of a birthday I traveled to Oakland to enjoy a stunning meal at a well renowned 2 star restaurant. As much as I love Vallejo, this was an experience of a lifetime. This chef does not need my praise, he earned both of his stars the hard way. The décor, the service and the food . . . impeccable. I admire anyone who is intent in their work and performs and their highest level. I witnessed this with every movement last night. Whether it was the line cook, wine steward, waiter or pastry cook. Each movement was exact, precise and thoughtful. We sat at the Chef’s Table and watched as every dish was plated. Incredible.
I enjoy food and have little spare time so I am prone to rushing through a meal. Except, when the meal is exceptional. This one was. At these moments I sit quietly and observe. These are the exceptional moments that I cherish in my life. Rarely have I enjoyed food of such quality.
Will I return? Perhaps. Perhaps not. Sometimes a perfect moment needs not repeating. Thank you Chef and staff.
Please follow my Facebook page The V-Town Social Club and don’t forget to stop in my website http://www.the-v-town-social-club.com
Until next time,
Eat Well and Smile Often
The first of May. Spring is in the air and I have noticed two things that take me back to my early years. The sensory memories, I find, are the strongest. Well, technically speaking, I guess that they are all sensory memories. What I am specifically referring to are those of sound and smell. This past weekend I caught the scent of charcoal and pine smoke in the air. One of my neighbors had a backyard fire going, presumably to barbecue, and it smelled like they used pine cones or needles to help start the charcoal along. The aroma gave me a sense of comfort and emotional warmth. It is a familiar smell that I associate with good times, happy times. As I walked a little farther the scent faded as did the emotion.
Continue reading “JOHN JACOB JINGLE HEIMER SCHMIDT”
(Read to the tune of Wednesday Morning.)
Thursday morning at 5 o’clock
And the muse won’t set in.
Anxiously pacing the bedroom floor.
Writing, deleting, I hoped to say more.
I think that it has happened. I think that I have Continue reading “THURSDAY MORNING”
It is said that you really cannot hear something until you are ready to hear it. Others say that the Universe knows and provides. While many believe that it is the will of a Deity. I am not smart enough to know which, if any or all, are true. To me it is kind of like this: You see things when you see them. Wow, that was vague. Let me start again.
One of my favorite, Continue reading “I JUST DON’T TRUST MYSELF ANYMORE”
When I was small, number 4 of 5, my parents rarely took us out to eat. Can you imagine, 5 kids under 12 years old at a restaurant? But, my father knew that my mother needed a break so we packed up the car, drove 5 miles, two towns over, to dine at the Smorgasbord. The theme song to the Beverly Hillbillies is running through my head. “This here’s a story about a man Continue reading “SHOPPING CENTER SURPRISE”
When I was 18 years old I went to Phoenix Arizona to study auto repair at UTI. (No, it stands for Universal Technical Institute.) I could have gone to a local junior college but the fact that UTI was in another State made it more appealing. It was my first ever, all alone adventure. I remember I drove the long way to see a girl, Continue reading “PERMISSABLE”
Last November we stopped. Rome burned and Nero fiddled. The AQI (Air Quality Index) for many parts of the State of California were the worst ever recorded ranging from Dangerous, to Very Dangerous, to Hazardous. Shelter in place was the order for the week, plus, following the start of the fire that took Paradise from us. News outlets were reporting that the fire covered Continue reading “PARADISE LOST”
Something happens when the sun goes down. As December closes in, doors begin to open here in Vallejo. Open houses and dinner parties. Cocktails and desserts. Laughter, conviviality, and a smack of drama just for fun. This week alone I have had conversations about tattoos, eccentric neighbors, sailing, Spruce our little pop-up shop, Callaghan Construction, the mispronunciation of sandwiches as sang-wiches. Stories of grandfathers topped the bill as did Iberian singers, concrete beaches, clowning for a children’s dance troupe in Russia and riding brooms to Las Vegas. I was even gifted a scarecrow for my winter garden. I have eaten shrimp and cheese, Continue reading “RESOLUTION”