Oh, I missed you all! This is a doozie of a post----pictures as well!!!
I’ve been sick with Crissy’s newly named illness, the Monkey Plague, and although have kept pretty busy, today is the first day since Wednesday that I’ve felt relatively normal. I still sound like I’m talking through a conch shell sometimes still, though.
Let’s see, there’s SO much to ramble about today. I’ll just start from where I left off, I guess!! First of all, we have a Shrimp Fra Diavolo emergency. I totally left out the WINE in the recipe. I’ve edited it to include it now, but if you made it without the wine I’M SORRY…I think it adds to the recipe.
Have I ever told any of you my strange, yet paralyzing phobia? Vomiting. I am terrified to puke. Therefore, if I’m around anyone puking, I lose my MIND with worry that maybe I’ll ‘catch’ their germs, if it’s someone in my house, I clean up the hard surfaces with bleach trying to kill germs. It’s really a problem at times. Like when my kids were smaller and I couldn’t even help them when they were sick…….like when my co-workers and/or their families have a stomach virus……..people around my office resort to not telling me about illnesses to try to ease my mind. Unfortunately, it makes it worse if I hear about it later…..the fear still plagues me. More on this later.
Okay, on to the Monkey Plague. Lots of snot, sneezing and body aches. Oh, and my poor nose looked like it had been assaulted. `Nuff said.
Friday night, I thought I felt better and went to dinner with Teenie. She’s always a ton of fun, and as usual, we had a fun, laughter filled evening..
Saturday morning, I realized that in actuality, I felt like crap. Mr. Perfectly has been really growly lately, and was still working (successfully this time, I think) on son #1’s truck. This makes him VERY grouchy…….so I hated to be all wussy and complainey (although I did complain some)…I tried to do some things around the house, and was generally un-successful on that front. Every joint in my body ached---even after pain reliever (and that almost always works for me). I hinted at chili for dinner, but didn’t get it done. Bologna and cheetos—woo hoo. Quite the gourmet, aren’t I?
Sunday rolled around with an early morning call from the In-Laws---we’d asked the day before if they’d be interested maybe in heading to Hermann, Mo for the Oktoberfest. Y’all KNOW how I like my fall fests!! They originally said no, and I thought maybe with the plague and Mr. P being so grouchy maybe we’d forego the trip, but they decided to go, so we packed up and drove to Hermann. Oktoberfest is an all month deal, and every weekend in October they have festival-like stuff happening, and the wineries are the place to be. There are a huge number of wineries in that area of our state, and Hermann is home to many. Hermanoff and Stone Hill are the biggest and most well known, but there are tons of others. The Adam Puchta winery is my personal favorite. Well, maybe not the actual winery, but their wine. GO ONLINE AND ORDER SOME. It’s really good----at least in my unsophisticated book. Remember, I drink sweet fruity wines, and I’ve never swirled, slurped and aerated the wine in my life. If it goes in and tastes yummy, then I don’t worry about proper pairings, and such. I just drink it.
ANYWAY…..back to the order of events. Mr. Perfectly, me and the In-laws trekked to Stone Hill winery. We took the tour and it really was quite interesting. During prohibition and until the 60’s Stone Hill winery produced MUSHROOMS in their cellars. The government apparently came in and destroyed all their wine making equipment during prohibition……(that would suck) and they needed a way to make money---so mushrooms it was. There is still mold on the cellar walls that can’t be removed from the mushroom growing. There are small areas of the mold that have taken on a purplish hue from the wine ‘breathing’ in the cellars.
Then we went on to the tasting room HIP HIP HOORAY!! I tried every single one they offered----even though I do not enjoy the dry/harsher flavors of wine (Norton for example), I did try them, dumping the ones I REALLY didn’t care for. My mother-in-law didn’t want to try the dry wines at all, so she gave her samples to the Father-in Law, instead of dumping them into the urn. Needless to say, we REALLY needed to go eat at that point. We waited 30 minutes for their on site ‘Vintage’ restaurant---and it was fine. Not fabulous, but okay. The in-laws ordered a sampler platter, Mr. Perfectly ordered a sausage sampler, and I ordered the Wienerschnitzel (hope I’m getting that right).
After the mid-day meal, the in-laws left, and Mr. Perfectly and I headed to the local brewery. He’s a beer drinker, I am not. He tried their varieties of beer, and thought they were pretty good. We took the little tour of their brewer area and the gift shop. I had to use the ladies room, so I went in search…..downstairs of the brewery (a former MFA feed store)….the wooden steps leading into a concrete and limestone basement.
I could smell the bathroom right away. It LOOKED okay, but smelled pretty urine-ey. I just thought of the germ-x wipes in my car and WENT FOR IT anyway. My mistake. I found a stall just in time to hear “ssspppplllllaaaaash”, heavy breathing…..FLUSH ’splaaassshhh’….heavy breathing…..spit…spit…flush..’SSSPPPPLLLLLAAAAASSSSHHHHHH’….spit….heave….heave…..SPLASH. Flush
We had a puker. And it wasn’t me. I peed as QUICKLY as I could and despite the germ-x wipes in the car, stopped to wash my hands…….hearing more breathing and spitting. I high tailed it OUT OF THERE like you wouldn’t believe. It set off a phobia that hasn’t bothered me in 18 months or so. My relaxation level with the prospect of puking was increasing. This set me back 47 steps.
I’ve always told people that I thought I could handle being with someone drunk and puking because there’s nothing I could ‘catch’. I WAS WRONG…..I assume someone had been at the beer garden a wee bit too long, and was sowing the seeds of one too many beers. It still kept me on edge the rest of the evening. Apparently all puking sends me into fits of worry and fear. God help me if she had a virus. EWWW. I’m telling myself that SURELY it was drunken vomiting……….or even sadly guilty bulimic vomiting……..but please, NOT STOMACH VIRUS VOMITING.
What is the proper social protocol for that situation? Does one gently call out “are you okay” when one doesn’t KNOW the puker or why she’s puking? Or is it okay to totally ignore the poor soul and RUN LIKE HELL?
Anyway-----that awful scenario aside, it was a GORGEOUS day, and we finalized it by going to my favorite winery—Adam Puchta. Well, the winery isn’t as large or busy as others, but the WINE is my favorite. Mind you I only do sweet wines, and they have several. We went to the gift shops, and I wanted to buy gifts for Teenie and her sister Marie, but the t-shirts were $20 apiece….and I love the girls, but that’s a lot for t-shirts. Especially tiny ones…they are little skinny minnies.
We then went to the tasting room where I asked for my favorite pseudo-red called Riefenstahler. It’s very sweet, and served cold (thank goodness….I don’t understand room temperature reds). I then asked for a sample of another favorite…….Vignoles. I’m guessing by reading some bottles at the grocery store that Vignoles can be sweet all the way to semi-dry. This version is pretty sweet. She asked if I wanted a key lime cookie with my sample----she had a look like I should know what she meant. I asked ‘for what’ and she explained…….a sip of Vignoles, a bite of key lime cookie and another sip of Vignoles and it tastes like a Margarita!! I thought to myself…..sure……whatev…..but I tried it, and to my absolute surprise IT TASTED LIKE A MARGARITA….with no salt!!! OMG!! The wine tasting girl said it was a Puchta-Rita. I ran back to the shop and bought 2 bottles of the Vignoles and 2 $6 canisters of key lime cookies. I’m gonna have to come up with something on my own….6 bucks for a couple of ounces of cookies sucked, BUT I had to share with Teenie and Marie. Marie is coming to town on the 1st, so we’ll PUCHTA-RITA it then!!
We went home and took some pictures of son #1 going to the homecoming of our local Catholic school…….he’s so handsome.
End of weekend. Didja ever think I’d end this? It’s a long one…..but there was SO much to tell!!
Oh, Stoogie announced the sweepstakes winner! Check it out if you haven’t already.
Happy Monday evening!
Work is cracking down on internet usage, so between that, cooking dinner and holding a PUPPY....it's been a long time blogging today.