Monday, July 28, 2008

Eat Out Much?

So, this is a pretty damn late post ... but I had to get my driver's license sorted this morning and it wasn't the most pleasant of experiences

Night Shot of JBs Corner in Melrose ArchBut let me cast my mind back to Friday first. It seems to have been a weekend of duplicates (sort of ...). I had a lovely catch up lunch with TheBrad, Singher and the Ex-Boss from The Big Corporate at JB's Corner in Melrose Arch. I had a yummy haloumi, avo and roasted aubergine sandwich. It was fab to catch up with them, although it doesn't sound like much has changed back at The Big Corporate ... certainly nothing that made me remotely miss the place! And Singher & I have a dinner plan we're gonna get started on so that we can all occasionally get together with the folks we still wanna see :) Eep, and TheBrad started smoking again which horrified me. He & Varen stopped within a week of each other in November06 ... it just seems such a waste for him to have started again now. Sigh.

In the evening we headed off to The Gypsy Lounge with J9-double0blonde and Squeak (was the only suitable time to see them, otherwise I wouldn't be having lunch & dinner out ... although the rest of the weekend followed much the same trend, and there was little I could do about it sadly). Sadly, the had a private function booking out their entire inside area so we were relegated to a cold table outside surrounded by what I'd call "The Friday Newscafe Crowd", not my ideal dinner-mates. And after a brief perusal of their minimal menu, we decided to move on ... to the nearby Melrose Arch (and the first of my duplicate experiences).

Logo for Orient in Melrose ArchWe decided to try Orient. The decor is pretty cool and the food was delish! I started with Salmon Roses (sushi) (a mere two did not touch sides tho). Varen started with Prawn Toast which I definitely think I might order next time ;) I thoroughly enjoyed my Peking Style Duck main course! And although I completely loved my 'O' cocktail (Varen hated it, but he hates ginger) it's a bit odd to have a cocktail menu without a single price or symbol to indicate costs ... especially when cocktail costs are regularly exorbitant. It turned out to be a lovely evening all round :)

On Saturday we started the morning with an hour at Wonder Wall, followed by a very relaxed afternoon. We couldn't really decide what we wanted to do for the evening, Varen was in the mood for a movie but I was skeptical as The Dark Knight had only opened on Thursday (eep, picture a packed cinema, on the evening Saturday show of a newly opened, long anticipated movie ... annoying people delux!). So, we decided to try Brightwater Commons (the best place to find yourself in an empty cinema!) and find out what time the movie was showing. 20h30 ... an hour and a half to kill. Not quite long enough to go elsewhere for dinner (aaargh and I was craving Xai Xai's Chicken Trinchado).

Logo for Babylon Again in Brightwater Commons, RandburgSo we wandered their dismal restaurant array and since I was already scheduled to try the Scrooge Diner at the bloggirls lunch on Sunday (and my second instance of duplicate experience) Varen chose Babylon Again! (for lack of better options ... I was so anti eating at any of the few restaurant options that I just went with the flow). In truth, I think he picked it based on the fire they had burning inside :)

I won't go into the bizarreness of eating sushi at a Greek Taverna but that's what we both ended up ordering (with our brief timeframe before the movie). The sushi wasn't bad and I guess it was close to the ideal meal since I wasn't terribly hungry. But here I must just say that when eating sushi, I love to pick & choose from a sushi-go-round rather than ordering a plate of 8 of the same pieces. What if I don't like it? Those 7 remaining pieces are a bit of a waste if I can't stand what I just ordered ... Give me manageable portions, at lower prices naturally, and I'll be much happier!

Logo for Let's Go BowlingTurns out we still had about half an hour to kill before the movie so decided to have a game of bowling :) Great fun ... although I suck (I had scraped skin off my thumb at climbing earlier so I'm claiming this disability impeded my performance!) and Varen is way better! I'd definitely like to do this again and try to become at least an average player! And then it was time for the movie :)

Movie Poster for The Dark KnightThe follow-up to the action hit Batman Begins, The Dark Knight reunites director Christopher Nolan and star Christian Bale. Bale once again embodies the man behind the mask. The Dark Knight takes Batman across the world in his quest to fight a growing criminal threat. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and District Attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart), Batman had been making headway against local crime until a rising criminal mastermind, known as The Joker (Heath Ledger), unleashes a fresh reign of chaos across Gotham City. To stop this devious new menace - Batman's most personal and vicious enemy yet - he will have to use every high-tech weapon in his arsenal and confront everything in which he believes.

Loved loved loved this! I'll warn you in advance that it's long. It started at 20h30 and we stepped out of the cinema at 23h15 ... with only a mere 2 trailers beforehand or so. But so worth it! I'm just re-devastated by Heath's untimely death :( It was a brilliant performance from him, and by far, I think, the best Batman of the series! Christian Bale was his usual smouldering hot self, but I still don't get how he can sound so different when he's Batman and when he's not. Oh, and again, you have to get passed his S slurring (the only minor annoyance of the movie). Definitely a must watch. I'd see it again, one the big screen ... and as Varen said that's about the best compliment I can give a move ;) Brilliant.

Logo for Scrooge's Diner in Brightwater Commons, RandburgAnd then on Sunday I found myself back at Brightwater Commons (it's not really worth even 2 visits in one week, let alone twice in a weekend, let me assure you!) for the July bloggirls lunch and Scrooge's Diner, picked by Angel :) This month there was only Jackson's Mom from The Jackson Files, Angel and Doodles of a Journo and myself, naturally. It was an absolute blast :) Every time we have one of these lunches I re-realise what a fab bunch of girls we have blogging in this country. So come on, the rest of you ... sign up and come along to the next one on 31 August!

And then I got home to find a very bored Varen ... so we headed to his folks. This did not turn out to be such a fabulous way to spend my Sunday afternoon because shortly after we got there, we got dragged off to Centurion (from Bedfordview) to have a look at the hole that Brother Zion will be moving into next Tuesday. And then (following the distinct trend of the weekend!) they decided to go grab a bite to eat - sigh. Even tho I'd already had a pretty large lunch, I couldn't say no in the face of 5 others who were keen. So we headed all the way back to Bedford Center (I refrain from comment about the lack of thought put into finding somewhere half way between a) their house and b) our house and c) Centurion since Varen had driven us to Centurion in his car ... but anyway) and I ended up barely finishing some tomato soup (that could've done with a helluva lot more puree-ing) at Ciao Baby Cucina.

Sigh, you have no idea how thrilled I was when we got home just before 8pm to jump into a nice warm bath with my book! And now I need to get some work done. I'll get the Driver's License renewal done a bit later ... sigh, it was exhausting tho, let me tell you!


boldly benny said...

Sounds like an awesome weekend although I'm also not keen on repeat visits of places on weekends - I had breakfast at Tasha's on Saturday and lunch there on Sunday!

So sorry I missed the lunch - sounds like it was fun!

AngelConradie said...

sheesh- talk about a run around weekend!

phillygirl said...

@benny - paha, I'm glad I'm not the only one who doesn't like repeating my venues on a regular basis ;)

looking forward to seeing you at the next one!

@angel - yup, busy busy busy!

Tamara said...

Blegh. I'm not a fan of Ciao Baby Cucina, I must admit. Bloggirls was fun. Thanks again for coming up with the idea!

phillygirl said...

@tamara - neither am I to be honest. Was fab seeing you at bloggirls again :)

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