Monday, November 07, 2005

No kids tomorrow . . .

. . .which means no lesson planning tonight! (I'm sure that tomorrow, no less than an hour or two into the day, I'll be wishing I was with the kids and not training on how to score ELA tests in February).

To celebrate our night of freedom, I went to dinner with another teacher from my school. We decided to splurge and went to the Al di La Trattoria in Park Slope. It was amazing. After living in Italy for three years I never have high expectations for eating Italian food in the States. This restaurant was soo good. It actually reminded me a bit of one of my favorite restaurants in Florence, Baldovino.

The food isn't traditional Italian recipes (which I tend to find boring after a while since all the restaurants have the same things on the menu), but more creative. We had mussels in a garlic and wine sauce for an appetizer. I had the Tortelli with pumpkin in butter and sage that was to die for. For dessert we shared a pear and chocolate cake. And of course to finish off the meal I had an espresso. Even apart from the food, the atmosphere felt like Italy. Unlike a lot of restaurants that are trying hard to look like Italy, this one felt like a trendy (rather than traditional) restaurant that you would *actually* find in Italy. If you can't tell, I highly recommend it.

After the last two days of thinking of Italy so much, this was just the thing to get me into full on I-need-to-be-in-Italy mode. I need to calm down. Italy isn't in my future for probably the next two years (at least), even though I hate to admit it.

One of my favorite things about living in Italy was going to dinner (or especially lunch) on a whim and sharing a great meal and glass of wine with a good friend. At least I can still have moments like that being a teacher in NYC.

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