But I certainly did not suspect such a thing... not one morsel. After all, she was the one who was so adament about wanting to not get married. What was the point, she challenged, to shackle up a good thing? Why not let the good run it's course, why encourage premature death?? She, the one who dated her now (as of today!) husband for ten years and never once referred to him as her boyfriend. Boyfriend? C'mon, he was more than that. He was her water, her air; she couldn't live without him, and so that, was that.
So when I met her for lunch at Mother Esta, Naka-Meguro's organic cafe and restaurant, I was in for more than just a culinary surprise.
It started with carrot potage, as many things really often should.
Followed by an organic vegetable salad, starring little daikon radishes that look like little swollen ankles, carrots, slices of zucchini, leaves of mustard greens and arugula, topped with a drizzle of blue cheese dressing.
I did not appreciate the pre-poured dressing, as I often prefer salad without dressing. Its only redemption was that it was good, at which time I got more use out of the accompanying gravy boat of remaining dressing. But, Mother Esta, you really should consider having all dressing accompanied--especially if we're talking about one who's as choosey with her friends (and vice versa), like, ahem, blue cheese dressing. (With whom, I would just like to point out, I am the best of friends.) (But, say, what if I was on a diet? Or I didn't care for rotting cheese? What if??)
Actually, this was basically my meal. For a steep ¥1,600, I had ordered the Mother Esta Soup & Salad lunch--but keep in mind, the ingredients are all organic. But also keep in mind, I am a carnivore. OK, OK, but we'll also keep in mind the honorable mentions! With my slightly (to me, anyway) pricey lunch were served a fantastic glass of iced coffee, hard and chewy bread with olive oil...
and a chilled banana bread dessert--and I don't even like bananas!
Shocking, I tell you. How far organic vegetables have come since the days of the over-priced, awkwardly-placed (right next to the $1.99/lb Granny Smiths would be the $3.99/lb organic Grannies), new-kid-on-the-block era at our local grocery stores. Now they've opened restaurants! In Tokyo!!
And think how much else has changed since 1997, with all of us, including my dear friend. (Who is not named Esta, by the way.) She was with her husband then, too, but with no intention of signing a marriage contract. What changed? In her own words, she realized that marriage was a declaration of strong feelings toward one another in that moment. What happens tomorrow is irrelavant, as the question really is, what can't happen in 24 hours? No, what we need to focus on is what is special to us now. And that, well! That, to her, was as clear as air.
Congrats, you two.
大根 daikon radish (Japanese radish)
2-20-14 Aobadai, Meguro-ku