24 February 2008

Tea at Gata's

I finally managed to have an afternoon tea at my place. I thought it worked out pretty well; in fact, well enough to plan more for the future. I'm thinking one more in the spring, before it gets too hot to bake. Of course, an iced tea party might be fun too, but I digress.
There was so much food! Everyone brought something to add to the overall enjoyment. I haven't heard any reports of food poisoning, so it seems the preparation worked out all right. We also had a poetry reading. This isn't done enough nowadays. The last one I remember going to was at a dinner at Pam and Carlos' home about a decade ago. Seriously. People tend to look uncomfortable when the subject of poetry is brought up. I don't understand why. There is so much out there to share, and it certainly doesn't have to be romantic. In this case, there was the option of reading our own poems, but everyone chose to read another's instead. That was fine too. Still, everyone was really cooperative about sharing something they liked, and it turned out being fun - in fact we bust out laughing in intervals. Tea parties don't have to be stiff, formal affairs. In fact, all you need are some good friends, some finger food, and of course tea, and you're set.
Feedback time: those of you who were there or were able to try some of the tea things afterwards, what did you enjoy the most? Was there any room for improvement? (be tactful) Any suggestions for next time? If you weren't there (I'll try to have more of these shindigs in the future, so please don't feel left out), what do you enjoy about tea parties, or what would you like to see in a future afternoon tea?
I forgot to take pictures of the teapots! Actually, a few of them have been featured in earlier posts, so I'm not tearing my hair out in passionate regret.
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21 February 2008


How about some non-cat stuff going on in my life? Well.....

I just realized today we've had Lush in New York for four years already. That's sick, truly sick. How did time move that fast? Now we have a number of Lush stores in Manhattan and one in Queens, can you believe it. They've even opened in Marie's pine-lined neck of the woods.

Last week when the weather was looking up, I took a trip downtown to South Street Seaport. I've always loved it down there: excellent memories of school trips when my mother was still an active part of my life (sorry, very personal moments coming.) It was one of the few places we had multiple school trips to, and my mom came along for parental supervision. While the other kids had packed lunch, she bought me a freshly made sandwich at one of the restaurants around the seaport (I think it's where the Bodies exhibit is now). This experience was in sharp contrast to my first school trip, to the World Trade Center, where I didn't realize we were supposed to bring money for lunch and I had my first exposure to mooching. I also had my first panic attack when we were in the observation deck. My mom wasn't there: she had gone with my sister to her school trip to Town Hall. I freaked out while standing by one of the windows that tilted out; it gave me the impression of falling. Now I'm not overly afraid of heights, but this didn't feel right at all. Perhaps this perspective made the three floors of Pier 17 a little more appealing. I did come around for a moment, to realize how cool it was that people on the ground looked like ants.

This day and age, I was there (South St. Seaport) on my own. I browsed in the nearby Strand annex until I was lightheaded. After a mild lunch I walked around the pier until I was tired of it, and headed back toward the subway. I took a slight detour and headed to John Street, only to discover a little shop called Vitalitea. I know, candidate for Funny Tea Room name, but the tea's really good there. The owner, I believe, is related in some way to the Nature Boutique next door. He let me sniff out a bunch of different teas, until I settled on a citrusy herbal blend, as well as the purchase of a tin of blueberry tea. The tin was pricey, but it smells fantastic. So I'm telling all my friends. I only regret that places like this were not in existence when I worked in the area. This always happens! Whine, whine, whine!

The other day I was doing a hand delivery for work, to a place that manages apartments (I think.) They were giving away table items for free, anything you want that was in the box was takeable. Well, I'm no moocher, but this was calling out to me. So I took a lovely silver tea service. There's no maker's marks, so I don't think they are worth a whole lot, but this matters not to the Tea Queen of Astoria. I shlepped the stuff home and used that nasty tarnish remover till it was gorgeous. Score!

Otherwise, I saw Bonnie's new place, and it's quite nice. Cozy but not cramped. Also, it's an easy walk from the train station.

20 February 2008

Kitty Love

It seems there's a little bit of mushiness going on with Bubuck and Zeno. It doesn't stop her from boxing his ears when the mood strikes her.
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13 February 2008

Make Yourself At Home

My feline nephews seem to be pretty comfortable at my place. Though Zenobia gets a little attitude with them here and there, it's a pretty peaceful environment. It was a lot easier an adjustment than the Cinnamon/Duforth alliance of 1995. Then again, Zenobia spent some time with the boys in the past, and none of these guys are as neurotic as Sino. The litterbox fills up a little quicker though.
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