It has been very hot here--in the upper 90s every day, as it is again today--so I haven't had a chance to explore Richmond with Audrey. I did walk down to the farmer's market at the train station on Thursday. None of my new co-workers had ever been, but they declined to trot 7 blocks in the heat; no doubt they have formed an interesting opinion of me ("you certainly do like to explore!" I do! I do!) So I set out on a 97-degree day to see what was on offer. I passed some interesting stuff: an old-time variety store, paint peeling and windows full of bright orange placards, selling "fried bologna steak sandwiches" and other curiosities. It has been a long time since I have had a good bologna sandwich--put a slice or two in a hot pan and cook until blistered and puffy, then slap on the yellow mustard and eat it between two slices of squishy white Hol-sum bread with a thick slice of tomato that soaks the bread. We get a lot of interesting food in Richmond, a city far more southern-feeling than the part of Virginia where I live, 65 miles north. We routinely have lunch at the Suntrust Bank cafeteria, which serves all manner of sandwiches and grilled items and good crunchy southern fried chicken wings. The sandwiches are served with piles of marinated red onions on them. The Arby's, which anywhere else is forgettable fast food, cooks breakfast sandwiches to order on big, fluffy homemade biscuits. Even the Wawa, the huge gas station where I stop on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays to fill up (these days I'm spending on gas what I used to spend for a bus ticket), serves "shorti" sandwiches--fabulous breakfast sandwiches on ciabbata bread (or pick up a lunch sandwich to go) to be eaten in the parking lot next door. I don't mind dashboard dining, but I can't drive and eat with eggy bits falling into my lap. Also, I've been trying to cach up with the Boka Truk ("Takos for your Mouf") which advertises its food as being Mexican/Asian/American fusion.
For whatever reason, Richmond is a town at lunch of card-table vendors, where you can buy anything from bulgogi to a chicken salad sandwich to Thai noodles from a hand-made wooden plywood cart, or straight off a card table. I'll be sampling and reporting on what I eat. And taking pictures if it ever cools down to the 80s!
Anyway, here's the train station (photo borrowed from Wiki) as it was in 1971. It doesn't look very different now. There weren't many farmers--I was told there are many more on Friday night and Saturday--but I did get a nice bag of Hanover tomatoes, which are famously huge and juicy.
The heat has mostly convinced me to stay inside, stitching. This is Sous le Soleil:
With a close-up of the moon and stars done with Gloriana silk:
And here's a before picture of Catharine McNeal.
Here's Pink, looking cool and snowy. Pink says, "it's best to stay inside when it's sunny and hot to keep from getting sun-burned ears."
Happy week ahead!