Last night we ate at The Cass House in Cayucos.
They do a four-course meal with a wine pairing for dinner. The restaurant is in a recently restored Victorian house that is run as a bed and breakfast. The food is fresh, local, organic, free-range, and individually chakra balanced for you before you eat it.
Holy shit, batman.
Warm, dark, intimate dining room, maybe a dozen tables. Views of the garden through the windows, and beyond that the sea. Candles, linens, dark wood, golden light, and everyone easy-going and mellow and happy and perfect in the way only Californians can be.
Started off with an amuse bouche our waiter called, “A Shot and A Bite.” A shot-glass sized serving of creamy leek soup, and a golden fried bite of crab claw with a dab of garlic aioli. Served with a glass of champagne, just to awaken our palates and send a serious warning signal to our bellies-
“Stand the fuck by.”
A salad of just picked garden greens on a disc of local chevre with roasted beets. A plate of house-cured meats- tongue, headcheese, sopressata, fresh ham, served with a pickled quails egg, mustard, and greens. Wild mushroom ravioli. Seared abalone steak on a bed of spinach. A pork dish with three bites of a tender loin and three bites of a braised leg concoction topped with pearl onions. Each dish accompanied by a different wine, reds and whites from all over the map, each one alive and dancing on the tongue and perfectly paired with the food and also new to us, exotic and off our beaten path and there was bread just made, tiny sourdough bites, and shot-glasses of a house made fennel soda I think, and chocolate opera cake and pots de creme and bourbon beignets and dessert wines and it lasted hours and I forgot the goddamn carbonara with fresh hand-made pasta and a golden egg yolk and cracked pepper and it was flawless and my beautiful wife was across the table enjoying herself, enjoying the incredible food and we were talking and talking about our life together, when we met and all we’ve done together and the goddamn food kept coming and the wine kept getting poured and there was just enough of a pause to catch your breath and sigh and wipe away a tear before the next plate was set down in front of you and I have never had the equal of that experience in all my life and it was good.
The other night I dreamed that I had an audience with every spiritual leader, one after the other. Jesus Christ, The Buddha, Mohammed, Keanu Reeves, Shiva, Kali, Vishnu, The Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles, Bob Dylan, Theodore Rothke, Mama Cass, Janice Joplin. One by one they spoke to me and answered my questions and explained the nature of reality and the meaning of life and then morphed into the next one in an unending parade and each one said the exact same thing and then one of them said, “Okay, now it’s your turn.” and then I was the spiritual King of Kings for a while and I said the same thing they had all said before me as I explained the nature of reality and the meaning of life to my supplicants, and then it was somebody else’s turn.
If only I knew what it was trying to say, I know it was trying to tell me something.
We cannot begin to imagine their pain and desolation.
not the first aspect of it.
despite what we’ve seen and know to be true about suffering.
how can we bear our good fortune in the face of this desolation?
must we safeguard it all the more, or let it go?
So, the horror continues unabated. On scales both vast and intimate, lives are destroyed and the hope of good people is crushed and the dreams of the innocent are set aflame on a sea of anguish and despair.
And none to be spared.
In “The Adjustment Bureau” there is a scene where the lovers have run to the end of the road and the forces that want to destroy them and destroy their love have surrounded them and in that last second they turn away from their destroyers and to each other and they say “I love you” and they kiss.
If we are to suffer and be slain, let us be together in it.