I am still thinking of my birthday and some of the meals I have had, recently, while celebrating. Last year was a wash. Although, I loved attending wine and chile, my dining companion had ideas about where she wanted to go. In the case of my birthday dinner, we had to go to a tapas place where one of the wineries she represents was hosting a wine dinner. Of all places, in Santa Fe, this is not where I was hoping to dine. I believe that this restaurant used to be good. The ambiance is always fun. Flamenco dancing, lively and open late. It has continued to keep a loyal following in spite of the decline in food quality. The meal was beyond lame in my opinion. I struggled through the paella and kept my wine glass full. My birthday weekend was fun but many of the dining choices were out of my hands. I was on someone else's trip and could suggest places but forced to compromise.
2012 was another one of the sacrificial years. I had dreams of returning to Napa to celebrate my birthday and Brian's. Brian would have been 30 that year and so his mom and I considered celebrating in style. However, I had agreed to be in a wedding in September in Denver. I couldn't spend five days in Denver and then take an additional four days off to celebrate my birthday in Napa a week later. I celebrated in Denver instead and wished for a Napa trip. Of course, Denver did not disappoint and I managed to visit my usual haunts in addition to my wedding party demands. My friend had an extravagant wedding and I was treated to a few lovely dinners.
In 2011, Shari visited me in Phoenix. She met the infamous Vegas. It was so funny. Initially, Jonny was demure, polite and respectful. By the end of our evening together, he was back to normal. Loud, obnoxious and spouting off stuff to get reactions from people. He is one of my best friends. Truly interested in my well being as a friend not a partner. He treated us to dinner at the Salt Cellar and we finished the night at Casey's. It was great and a wonderful way to celebrate. Shari and I chose to get tattoos that trip too.
2010, Sara Jo and I headed to Manitou Springs. I had been busy training for a marathon in Vegas and we had a half marathon to prepare for in October. I chose to keep it local that year. Sara and I hiked Matthew Winters Park before heading to Colorado Springs. We stopped at the Broadmor for an afternoon cocktail and then checked into this cute little bed and breakfast in Manitou. We bar hopped and had a lovely meal at a creperie for dinner. Sara knows that I enjoy day drinking, great food and conversation.
This year should be fun. I always try to go somewhere to celebrate. Due to work and the festival, I will be in Santa Fe. I might be able to day trip it somewhere, too. And then, there is the Bahamas where the real celebration begins. My gift to myself this year. Cheers!