Monday, April 21, 2008

Blunday Suddy Blunday

We had a pretty low-key weekend. We had big plans though! We were going to rent a car and drive up to the Kapiti Coast and go kayak somewhere. We ended up doing none of that and instead hanging pretty close to the apartment most of the weekend. The weather on Friday evening and Saturday morning was disouraging us from venturing out. We got a cold snap and a bunch of rain. It was good weather for soup.

We tried a french bistro up on Cuba St. called Le Metropolitain. I think there are probably a couple of accents here and there in that name, maybe. At any rate, it was probably the first bad meal we've had in Wellington. It was expensive, service was slow, and the food wasn't very good. Three strikes! The staff was authentically French, however, so I'd put that in the minus column as well. Don't eat there, we definitely won't go back. D'accord?

At least we got out of there before the Edith Piaf cover band got set up and started to play. I'm pretty sure playing Edith Piaf records over a bowl of whole milk would yield cottage cheese in the first 10 seconds. It sounds a bit like a young boy being beaten to death with an accordian.

There was, however, a highlight to that meal and that was Haley and the Escargots. Sounds like a cool name for a book, a band or maybe an art film.

Joanne and I knew that Haley would eventually have snails some day, and we both looked forward to it with great anticipation. Haley is our adventurous eater---often preferring exotic foods over the mundane pizza-and-fries preference which is almost universal among the world's children. Haley goes for the squid, octopus, heavily spiced meats, bitter green vegetables like kale and spinach. We knew she'd be up for escargots, and sure enough when enticed with the option of eating snails she was all over it.

And she LOVED them.

She had the escargots tongs and the two-pronged fork since her snails were still in their shells when served so she got the full experience. Watching her work them out of the shells and hungrily chow them down was a singular joy for both of us. It made everything else about "Le Metropolitain" worth it.

Sunday I gave mom a much needed break and took the girls to the park, bought them some ice creams and let them lose their minds. We also stopped off at an art museum and Zoe took pictures of pretty much everything in the place. It was an absolute blast.

On Sunday night we met up with Jake and Brandie, other insane immigrants like us who moved with their two young daughters from a comfortable and perfectly happy situation back in the States to the Wellington area this year.

We knew Jake and Brandie back in our previous life and by pure coincidence their moss-free rolling stone knocked into our own as we were preparing to leave the country in March and we reacquainted ourselves. We each arrived within about a month of each other. And we're currently living in apartments on the same street. Only about half a block away from each other. The similarities of our situations are quite remarkable.

I think it's cool that we can kind of lean on each other a bit as we get underway as full fledged Kiwis. They're driving cars already! That blows me away.


Cathy said...

These pix of the girls are just wonderful. I loved seeing the artwork, too. Thanks for this.

Cathy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Was the comment deleted by the author of the blog or the author of the comment?


NSI Shannon said...

Hello Mr. Mariotti! Shannon here, your 7/25 ex-compatriate! Was just roaming around your blog, and came across this mention of the Stephens now being down yonder in NZ!! And since we're in need of sending shareholding info. to former-NSIer's, I thought I could kill two birds with one stone here and ask for a mailing address for both you and they.
You can send it to me @ and convey the same to Brandie &/or Jake so that they know info. will be on its merry way, seeeing as a meeting is being planned for the 16th of May (I believe).

Not very good grammar in this message, I should hope you'll forgive me as I will never be as prolific as you (so I usually don't even try!).
REgardless, it was nice to have a reason to write, and would like you to know that you are missed and envied (even if just by I)!! Heehee, hopefully my witty sarcasm comes through as it's meant!
Take care good sir, and give my best to your phenom bride and your adorable girls.
~Shannon Greene