Thursday, September 27, 2012

Girl talk at Las Flores at the Fort

Tonight I had dinner at Las Flores, a new casual tapas restaurant at the Fort that's being talked about as a hot new place by foodies and also by people who always like to try the next new place in town.

It was actually one of those few nights I had free in a never-ending Travelife -- actually, it wasn't really free as tonight was the third-night dinner for PATA 2012, which is one of the biggest events for the travel trade industry, and there were also several other events happening in town; but I'd decided not to go to any in favor of this reunion -- and two weeks ago I'd made a date with an old school friend who I hadn't seen in decades.

She'd asked another school friend to come along, and so we were a three-some for a tapas dinner tonight.

Scroll down to read more about dinner....


Remains of a paella and an order of gambas

We had paella, gambas, a very good steak, and an excellent Spanish omelette, washed down with white wine and sangria. The food was all good enough for a nice evening out, and the atmosphere in the restaurant was hopping.

It was full of animated people, and there was even a senator having dinner with a young actress in full view in one of the outside tables tonight.

It's a pretty nice restaurant for a casual dinner, with interesting decor; however, I found the chairs bulky and uncomfortable. You can't sit and relax properly in them because they're too deep and low to lean back in, so I found that I was always at the edge of my seat, having to sit up very straight without support, even when all I just wanted to do was lean back and talk after dinner.

Spanish omelette at Las Flores

But, wow, it was also one of those truly rare nights I didn't have a Travelife on my mind. Instead we indulged in fascinating girl talk -- the kind of stuff women discuss when they reach a certain age. I'm thinking just a bit over 25 here, by the way.

Lots of it was controversial and thought-provoking stuff, as well as about real dilemmas faced by people in our generation. I wish I could write about what we discussed and start a debate, but I'll probably be starting a forest fire here instead of a debate, if I did.

We did agree, however, that life is too short not to do what it takes to be happy.

Remains of a very good steak...

I don't like gossiping, and I'm not really interested in other people's lives, unless it's being told by that person himself or herself. I think gossip is toxic and I never join lunches or dinners where I know gossip is going to be the main course.

But I really like hearing about someone's real tales -- I can sit for hours listening to a life story -- as long as it's not from a third party.

So today, we shared mostly about our own lives. I listened with complete attention as they -- in their own words -- bared their souls; it certainly made for a jaw-dropping evening for me. And then when it was my turn, well, I was kind of "coerced" to share just a little bit.


Ironically, talking about the real things in my life is pretty hard for me to do because I'm a really private person. You might think otherwise because so much of my everyday life gets written up in this blog -- but, as a couple of people know, only the stuff for public dissemination really makes it online.

But, finally, when I started telling a little bit of my story tonight, I certainly had their attention. They hadn't seen me in ages and I do lead a rather unusual life.

All too soon, it was over. But we did promise to do it again sometime soon. I even somehow got roped into promising to make dinner when there's finally a lull in my never-ending Travelife. Hopefully we won't have to wait a couple of decades for the next enjoyable reunion.


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