Monday, March 30, 2009

Sleepover with Lori

Yesterday I had a sleepover at Lori's apartment in Staten Island - she lives with her boyfriend in a high-rise about five miles from Polina's place. Her boyfriend is in Israel for a week so she's been feeling a bit lonely and I thought I might cheer her up.

I picked her up from a train station in New Jersey where she was coming from visiting some friends down in Central Jersey and we drove over the bridge to SI. They have a very nice apartment, but small compared to mine, especially for two people. We went out to the grocery store to buy some vegetables and eggs for our cooking adventures - Lori has a fledgling catering business so I was helping her prepare her meals for the week.

In her tiny kitchen we managed not to bump into each other too much while preparing a vegetarian menu of coconut and red lentil soup, red pepper and fire-roasted tomato chili with beans, green lentil and egg curry, baby sweet peas and shredded cabbage with toasted spices, and pasta with mushroom sauce. It took us less than two hours, even though we burned the spices on the cabbage dish and had to start over once - felt very Iron Chef-like. She said having me as the sous chef cut her cooking time in half, and I was welcome to come back anytime to help. We packed the food for the catering customers and then ate the extra portions for dinner, which was delicious. Appropriately after dinner, we watched Iron Chef America on the Food Network.

Lori was exhausted after her weekend of visiting friends and cooking, so we took turns showering and I gave her a back and shoulder massage before we turned in for the night. As usual in a new bed, I didn't sleep all that well, especially since we turned out the lights before midnight and I'm used to sleeping at around 3 a.m., but she had to get up at 7 a.m. this morning to go to work. Also, when you're used to sleeping on a $3,000 Simmons mattress, it's pretty hard to get used to anything else for one night, although I find the beds at Marriott Residence Inns to be quite comfy.

This morning I drove Lori to the bus stop and came home at around 8:30 a.m., not quite knowing what to do with myself. I ate breakfast, watched some TV off my DVR, and got a call from a recruiter asking me to come into the city on Wednesday for a writing test for a PR agency one block north of my old office on Third Avenue. I took the opportunity to make an appointment for a haircut and coloring at my salon for later in the day. Then I retired to my big, familiar bed and took a two-hour nap in the middle of the day.