Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Another Typical Weekend...

...of shopping, cooking, eating, and visiting with friends.


I wanted to buy a dress shirt, so we took the bus into Basel on Saturday morning to do a little shopping. We walked into a store, and we came out of the store a little while later with my dress shirt AND...a winter coat for Mrs. TBF.

How the heck did that happen?

Mrs. TBF tried on the coat a couple of weeks back, but she thought it was too expensive. Just when I was about to pay for my shirt, Mrs. TBF showed up at the counter with the coat and MADE AN OFFER!!! I couldn't beleive it!!! She was actually negotiating on price with a store manager in Switzerland. And you know what? The guy dropped the price! SIGNIFICANTLY!!! Then our friend Di, whom we met at the shop, said the words that sealed the purchase.

"...that coat is TIMELESS!"

With those words (and the "new" price) the deal was sealed. Mrs. TBF had her new coat that she said she'll "...be able to wear until I'm 100 years old". Does that mean that she'll never have to buy another winter coat again? I'm not holding out hope for that.


Dave and Jane came over for dinner on Saturday evening. It was kind of a birthday dinner for Dave because we never bought him a birthday gift back in September. We just couldn't come up with any good ideas, so we just decided to make him a nice dinner; oyster casserole on toast points for a pre-dinner snack, stuffed eggs and beet ravioli for a starter, mussel soup for the soup course, and cote de boeuf (rib steak) with mushrooms and mashed potatoes on the side for the main course. As if that wasn't heavy enough, we had Ben and Jerry's ice cream for dessert. Oink!


We went up to the Alsace (more specifically, Riquewihr) with John and Rammy. The main reason was to go enjoy lunch at a restaurant that J & R have been to before, but we got there a little early and walked around the insanely crowded Christmas market to kill some time before our reservation.

John and I were enjoying a small sandwich and a beer, ummmm...twenty minutes before eating lunch, when John suddenly said: "Hey...that's your friend from America walking over there! I forgot his name, but...you know...the one who ate at our house earlier this year!" I think I accused John of being drunk on one sip of his tiny beer, but then I realized he was right.

Tom and Sylvia - from Connecticut - were walking not ten yards away from us. Of course, I had to sneak up behind them and give them grief for having come all the way to Europe without calling us. But...I'll give 'em a break this time because Tom was here on business and hardly had any free time. I don't blame him for wanting to spend time just with Sylvia. But...

What are the odds of just running into friends from overseas while walking through a crowded Christmas market in France? It reminds me of the time when we were in Rome, and walked out the front door of our hotel just as people we know from Basel were crossing right in front of us on the sidewalk. Or...the times we've run into people we know at various airports around Europe.


So, after saying goodbye to Tom and Sylvia, the four of us ended up having a very nice Menu Hiver for lunch at the restaurant. Afterwards, we shopped a little bit at the market (crazy looking Santa decoration and some smoked meat), stopped for a quick tasting at a winery, and then made our way back to Basel.

And if that wasn't enough eating for one weekend, I even ate a "snack" of leftovers on Sunday evening while watching football. Gain three pounds during the weekend, and lose it during the week.

...the story of my life!


Global Librarian said...

Congratulations on Mrs. TBF's new coat.

And it may be a very long time before she buys a new one. I got a new winter dress coat this year. My old one had been purchased when I was in college, nearly 20 years ago. Paying extra for something that is "timeless" is well worth it!

CanadianSwiss said...

Ohhhhh! I need to go shop with Mrs. TBF, then. I'm crap at bargaining.

The Big Finn said...

glo lib - You definitely don't know the manipulative mind (when it comes to shopping) of Mrs. TBF! Here's my prediction:

October, 2008 - "I think I'm going to be needing a new coat that has a (insert feature not found on the multitude of other winter coats she has)."

November/December, 2008 - "I'm going to check out the sale at (insert store name here)." During this same outing, she will find a coat that is NOT on sale, and she'll buy that coat.

cs - Who you should really shop with is my dad; greatest negotiator I have ever seen. For example: One time, about 25 years ago, I was in a carpet store with him. The carpeting was listed at $25/sq. yard, and my dad (with a dead-serious look on his face) offered $3 (I cringed!)!. I think he ended up getting it for something like $6/sq. yard.

Unknown said...

Congrats mrs TBF! I want to see the new coat (how wonderful!!!) The new coat sounds like something I need. OR another big one for my nice gigantic swimming shoulders.

Riquewhir is so beautiful. I haven't been back since 2002.

Anonymous said...

BLASPHEMY!!!! ive seen martinis bigger then that beer! and im not even a teen yet!!!!