Ethiopian food last night was certainly not vegetarian friendly. Oh well, the kitfo was delicious and I'm glad we got to try a new place. Mmm. I can't even begin to explain my love of food. I love to eat it, cook it, smell it, look at pictures of it, read recipes in books and magazines, read about it on blogs.... I associate certain foods with celebration and sadness and family and seasons. I'm very grateful for my somewhat solid metabolism but all this exercise certainly helps too! Now that it's officially fall, I've been wanting to celebrate autumn food with warm, heavier dishes, Unfortunately, it doesn't get crisp here until early November-ish? On days like today, I do miss the northeast and the clear divide between the seasons. In fact, one time that I flew home during the fall, I basically cried during the descent because I was so happy to see the changing leaves on the trees (and unfortunately, I had typed that as dissent at first. ugh.). Here, it's hot April-October and an ambiguous rainy cool for the rest of the year.
As much as I love summer and the beach and the hot hot hot weather, I eagerly anticipate the change over to autumn. Especially after months of being sticky and sweaty in shorts and tanks, I love the comfort and warmth of fall clothing. Cable knits, sweater dresses, riding boots, scarves, leather jackets... delicious. Plus, once I'm all decked out in my northeast best, walking around Manhattan as the breeze gets sharp and leaves are changing just feels like... magic. (Don't worry. I rolled my eyes at myself on that one.) Even more so, I get to go home upstate and it's painfully beautiful there. Have you ever been out for a walk, hopefully with a great dog or friend, late on a fall evening and the cool air burns your face for the first time, your steps crunch, and the air smells faintly of wet leaves and fireplaces? Just the thought of those nights makes me so happy that I'm positively giddy when I actually get to do it. I think I still consider autumn as an opportunity for new beginnings because I associate it with the start of school (and new school supplies! Always a favorite). I usually find myself making changes and decisions and plans.
I also notice that I associate lots of my memories of places and people and things with walking... I think it's the most authentic way to experience a lot of things. Especially when I travel to a new place alone, I will leave my hotel with a map and walking aimlessly through side streets. There is much that isn't in a Fodor's that I've been able to discover just from my serious case of wanderlust. In fact, this summer in Brooklyn, I didn't have all that much to do so I would often wander around by myself for an hour or so and then use my phone to guide my way back. Found some great coffee, met some nice people, bought a cute dress.
Anyway, I ramble. Back to my love of fall foods. I've been craving a pumpkin scone recently, like the ones at Alice's. If I was as good of a baker as I wish I were, I would grab a real pumpkin at Whole Foods (I know they're available already) and make the whole thing from scratch, but I'll probably cheat and use canned crap. Or be really lazy and really cheat and make these: Pumpkin cupcakes. I could settle for my standard Irish soda bread recipe though (and a pot of Barry's) for a lovely Saturday afternoon, if only the darned weather would do as I say! Alas it will not. At least I'll be back in the city exactly three weeks from today. If I don't eat an Ess-a-bagel soon, I may truly expire on the spot.
Goodness, after writing all this, I can't wait to get back to New York for a bit. I never understand how I can love and miss an entire city so much that it's physically painful.