There are tell-tale signs that I am now in my 30's (well, 30 - singular. But still). One sign is my recent membership donation to public radio. Another sign is my reluctance to stay out late on a Friday night after I've worked all day when all I really want to do is relax in a hot bath, slip into comfortable clothes and curl up on my couch.
In an effort to divert this all-too-often plan of action (or inaction, as the case may be), Jen and I decided we would go downtown last night and not retreat home until we had each met one new person. The mission was nearly aborted when Jen ran into an outfit crisis and I was in the middle of dealing with a hair crisis. Depsite the minor snags, we managed to arrive at Rumba only a half hour late to meet my friend Kelly, her boyfriend, Matt and Matt's sister, Liz for dinner.
On a side note: Rumba is a restaurant uptown on West End near the Vanderbilt campus. It's a rum bar and satay grill (satay, not sautee, Kelly) and it has really good Caribbean island-inspired food. Plus, they have s'mores on their dessert menu...I'm not sure that s'mores is technically an "island" derived delicacy, but so what? S'mores is a perfect food and deserves to be on any menu.
After dinner we went downtown only to turn back around once we saw the insane crowds. We tried to get into Robert's to no avail, popped into The Second Fiddle to um...use the facilities...and then gave up on downtown. Apparently this weekend is not only Vanderbilt's Homecoming weekend, but last night there was a Ludacris concert at the arena and Blue Man Group at the performing arts center. Add to that the usual weekend tourists and it was too much crowdedness.
So we ended up going to this neat little place near Hillsboro Village called The Trace. A low-key, upper-scale, adult bar (i.e. no college students). Tasteful interior and a casual, intelligent atmosphere.
On another side note: I do not possess the mechanical skills to parallel park. Just can't do it. It is a trait that has been lovingly passed down through the generations from my grandmother, to my mother and on to me. I do not pretend I can parallel park, and however embarrassing, I make no apologies. If I've lived this long and have yet to figure it out, it is clearly beyond my control. Last night I TRIED to parallel park...really made an effort. Finally, with tears of laughter streaming down her cheeks, Jen offered to trade seats and park the car. I'm glad my shortcomings can at least provide some degree of amusement.
At The Trace we met Nancy and her shiny, brand-new, straight-out-of-the-box boyfriend, Joey. A couple of Nancy's friends were also there and a couple of Joey's friends. Nancy was her usual effervescent self and lost no time in making introductions all around. Requisite vodka-tonic in hand, I met FOUR new people last night, thus exceeding our predetermined quota for the evening. . . . Does this mean I can stay home next Friday night? :)