Goody New-Shoes!

So yesterday I went to the running store…and was almost scared out by a pack of wild runners!  It would’ve been smart for me to call ahead, but nooo, I’m not that clever.  It turns out that they host a running club that was meeting at this particular time, and the entire store was PACKED.  I went up to the door and just saw a bunch of people standing around in running gear, so I politely yielded and waited my turn on the sidewalk for their pow-wow to be over.  It was so funny how they all filed out of there…I made the comment to my mom, “it’s like clowns pouring out of a Volkswagen!”  I tried to say it quietly, though, because any one of them could’ve kicked my ass.

It was funny, a couple of them walked out of the meeting before the rest of the group and stayed outside near us on the sidewalk.  I asked them if it was a running club and if they’d be done soon, then we kind of chatted about the group a little.  I forgot what I said, something about staying out of the way probably, but one of the guys said something to the effect of “pretty soon, you’ll be able to join them.”  Part of me felt discouraged, like he was patting me on my little-kid head, but part of me felt somewhat uplifted.  I know he was being nice and encouraging, even though he doesn’t know my story (I didn’t tell him why I was there or what little running experience I had), and it made my heart a little fuzzy.

Getting back to the point, after all the clowns had exited the Volkswagen, mom and I went in.  He watched me walk barefoot for a few paces and quickly concluded I was an over-pronator and needed shoes with more stability, turning up his nose at my squishy-soft Nikes with basic orthotic insoles.  I tried a few shoes and was overwhelmed…when you’ve got someone who knows what they’re talking about staring at you and waiting to hear what you have to say about a real running shoe, it’s nervewracking.  They all felt different, more “hard” and “rigid” than the ones I was used to, but it was hard to tell which one was better.  I finally settled on a pair of Saucony running shoes (which tickled me to death, as that brand screams “RUNNER” to me, though what do I know?) and couldn’t stop giggling the entire night.  I really really really hope these are the answer to my problem.  I hobbled around way too much yesterday and don’t want to have to go through it any more.

After we finished at the running store, we decided to go out to eat at Carrabba’s.  Now, bear in mind that this meal was pretty outrageous, but I don’t go there but every few months. 

I’ve been dreaming about this particular cocktail for awhile, so I knew I had to get one.  Their Italian Wedding Cake martini is amazing!  It’s got vanilla vodka, coconut liqueur, and…pineapple juice, I believe?  Whatever, it’s amazing.  Mom and I also shared a half-loaf of bread with EVOO and herbs. (These pics are all probably going to suck just a tad; lighting was low and I was self-conscious about whipping out the camera in close quarters)


My favorite salad from them…in hindsight I should’ve asked for the dressing on the side.  Oh and I was horrified after I wolfed the whole thing down because it had a fishy aftertaste…I hope there weren’t anchovies in the dressing.


And for my entree, I chose the Tagliarini Picchi Pacchiu; pasta with an olive oil and crushed tomato sauce, teeming with garlic and fresh basil.  Not as bad as alfredo, but not as good as steamed cabbage.


I only ate a few bites of this because Mom and I decided we wanted to share dessert.  And by the way, mom ordered my favorite pre-vegetarian days meal, the Pollo Rosa Maria with garlic mashed potatoes on the side.  The chicken has melty cheese inside and sauteed mushrooms all over…oh gosh how I love it. (Terrible photo warning)


So dessert…the Dessert Rosa: “delicious butter cake topped with pastry cream, bananas, strawberries, pineapple and whipped cream”  This is one of my favorite desserts, because it’s not too heavy.  I’ve never had one where they put the chocolate-covered cherry on top.  In my opinion, it got in the way.  They shouldn’t have messed with perfection.  smile_teeth


Complete with cappuccino!

Though I didn’t eat as much as I once would and could have, I was uncomfortably full.  Mom and I were miserable!  We didn’t want to go home yet, so we swung by Dick’s Sporting Goods to get some higher-quality socks than the dinky little ones I’ve been using.  I snapped a pic of the Carrabba’s roof on the way out – I know it’s a chain and ours is nothing special, but rooftop horticulture deserves a picture!


And check out this beautiful sky:


At Dick’s, I got some New Balance socks and drooled over a pretty bike helmet.  I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here, but Mom and I are getting our mountain bikes fixed up, so I’m nervous and excited about re-learning how to ride!  I don’t have a helmet yet, so I was keeping my eye out for a good one.  I don’t know anything about them, and this one could possibly be the most horrible choice out there, but based on looks, I was smitten!


After lusting over the helmet and checking out with my socks (and our re-usable Clemson backs, w00t!), we went over to the pet store because I’ve been whining about wanting a fish lately.  I got a cute little betta fish, named him Bertrand, and forgot to take a picture.  smile_sad  So he’ll have to make his blog debut tonight!

I’ve dragged my feet long enough; I’m headed to the Y to run, unless I walk outside and it magically feels 10° cooler; in that case, I’m headed to the park.  I wish I was headed to Greenville tonight to go to a baseball game with some friends from college, but I’m scared my tires won’t get me there…they’re in dire need of replacing, and I haven’t been able to take my car in this week.  smile_cry