Sunday, June 10, 2007

Live Free AND Die

This past Memorial Day Weekend, a few of my compadres and I decided to dust off Audrey's good old Scooby Doo Van for a getaway to luscious Grantham, New Hampshire, where my roommate Tyler's parents have a condo. I was particularly giddy because I had been given the glorious distinction of being named HEAD CHEF!! Our overwhelming and uncontrolled excitement perhaps rocked the 'ol missionary van a bit too hard, though, because before making it out of New York, she decided to break down. In the Bronx.

Ray and Mike are so handy!

Luckily for us, a would be disaster was averted and was instead turned into a pleasant 20 hour side-excursion to the Bronx, thanks to Darius and the hospitality of the Longarino clan.

Sal and Nico, holding down the fort.

We even got to try some pizza at one of New York's best, Louie and Ernie's .

This sausage slice was so mouthwateringly succulent and scrumptious - only DiFara's is better (aside: I will always love you Dominic and I don't care what the health nazis say!)

Next door we found this:

Being in a heavily Italian part of the Bronx, Teresa logically had this:

Spumoni! What's better for a post-pizza treat on a hot day than pistachio-chocolate-vanilla Italian ice? Ahhh.

Once in New Hampshire, we were confronted with the sad rural reality of restaurants closing before 9, and had to have dinner in McDonalds, aka McSuckhole. Aiming for the least worst of all possible outcomes, I ordered this "Southwestern" salad (I opted not to go for the "Asian Salad" after hearing the cashier's answer to my innocent inquiry on what was in it - "You know, Asian vegetables." Yeah...ok, sure. What are we talking about here, bok choy? Right, that's what I thought.)

Afterwards, I wanted to wring all the toxic chemicals out of my stomach. Gross.

Ray is checking out the nutrition facts. His moment of realization is colored with internal monologue, "I see. Oh yes, it is possible, after all, to both live free AND die in New Hampshire. Interesting."

To make up for it, the next two days, with the help from sous chefs Mike and Ryan and Tyler's parents dream kitchen, I performed some intense head chef duties:

(Mike made his deliciously famous Rice and Beans.)

Some serious Martha Stewart stuff going on here.

Tyler doesn't like fruits or vegetables, he preferred to top his waffle with Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Look at that sugar sparkle! Brilliant!

So, besides the McDonalds part that no doubt killed us all just a little bit, we did a lot of free living, including fun summer camp activities like swimming in the lake, canoeing, and bballing. We left feeling refreshed and very free. Just look at all us shining happy smiling little monkeys with our opposable thumbs!