The Scene: Sunday morning, M and I are lolling around the apartment, some of us drinking oil, some of us not. He suggests that we go to brunch, to which I’m like, “Um, yes. I’m already out the door.”
The Game-changer: He’s all, “Let’s pretend we’re in Boston, where walking several miles is a totally normal thing to do, and just walk there.”
The Result: Everything good ever.
Sunday was one of the most fun days I’ve had in a long time, and it was pretty much all because we decided to push ourselves just the tiniest bit and do something we don’t normally do.
First of all, walking is just fantastic in and of itself. Now that I’m sort of acclimated to sitting in an office chair all day, using my limbs is just the greatest. It’s getting a tiny bit cold outside, but somehow moving swiftly (there is no other pace when you walk with him) concentrates all the sunshine on you, and …I think photosynthesis is involved, and it makes you high on life.
And then…we passed an estate sale. Actually, it turned out not to be an estate sale, but just a man who likes restoring furniture, but that means no one had to die for us to get our fabulous new table, so I like that even better. We needed a new dining table in a major way, and while this one is not my most favorite of colors, it has good “bones” (as they say in the biz) and I welcomed it into our home with open arms. Specifically, the arms of the guy selling the table and his son, as they drove it over to our house in their truck.
After we found the table but before it was delivered, we actually made our way to our brunch destination. Here’s the thing about brunch in Long Beach: it’s so much more than you think it can be. For the longest time, I labored under the illusion that Schooner or Later was the be-all and end-all, and as long as you can fit in a two-hour wait time, they’re great. And then we discovered Kafe Neo, and my universe expanded to include a Greek omelette with marinara sauce. But…guess who had never actually Yelp-ed their own city in regards to brunch? Yeah. Embarrassing. However: it’s not about what you have done in the past, it’s about how you apply yourself in the future. And friends, I will be applying myself to brunch in the LBC like it’s my job from now on. There are like seventy squillion fantastic places to try. First up on our list: Patio 212.
Verdict: Adorable. I felt like I was on vacation in Austin the whole time. Incredibly friendly servers, fantastic food, and an outside patio oasis featuring a fountain.
Hey there, chilaquiles. I want to marry you.
After brunch, and after table delivery, we were high on life to the point that he suggested that we go shopping for furniture. (I want everyone to remember that this happened once in history). We hit up our trusty Redondo crazy attic store, and several more on 4th street, but nothing had the magical combination of being awesome and not being over a thousand dollars. (Don’t you hate when that happens? Although I will say that it is really fun to walk into an incredibly overpriced store, see the price tags, spasm internally, but then continue browsing as though “$2100 is such a steal for that coffee table, darling! Did you see the lines on that piece? Heaven!” and then when you walk out twenty minutes later, the hipster store clerk bids you an earnest adieu and presses his card into your hand. Love.)
Furniture-shopping wall having been hit, we sought out the 4th street bookstore that last week had dollar books for sale, only to discover that they were closed! Why? Because the owner was participating in the Indie Craftswork Fair that was going on in Belmont Shore. Um? Yes, please.
This place was amazing. Picture Etsy. Now picture it being a living, breathing fair with humans and food trucks and soy candles and everything that is good in life. It was creativity overload…such an incredible shot in the arm of people who were actually pursuing their artistic gifts and offering them up to the public. We found it with only half an hour to go, which made me a little manic for a second, but then one of the vendors told me that the whole thing is happening again in Downtown LA in two weeks. After that, I could breathe a little easier, buy way too many candles, and call it a day.
(First, of course, we had to get take-out from a place we just discovered on 4th. It’s called Number Nine, and they serve pho with grass-fed beef… M pretty much had a conniption when he walked past and picked up their menu. I saved my fit for when I bit into one of their spring rolls. Just do it. Let’s not even talk about it.)
The Take-Away: Start your day with one unexpected move, and it might end up being the type of day you fold up and stick in your pocket for years to come.