After washing most of the color from my corn-starched body I got dressed warmly and was ready for lunch – a surprise my dad had planned for me, Caroline, and Brinn – who we went and picked up to join us. I realized we were headed back out to Tempe (the area we were destined to spend most of our day) and we soon pulled into a shopping center and walked into Cafe Lalibela, Ethiopian restaurant, for lunch.
Inside, at a table near us, sat some women with green hands. We had found fellow color runners. My dad said quite loudly, and purposely, something about dining near zombies. The ladies overheard us and wondered at our dryness. It felt neat to have something in common (running and food choice) with people that we would have otherwise not conversed with. Then we ordered tea and the vegetarian exclusive.
The plate takes up most of the table, but that’s fine as it’s the only one, and I’m quick to move my tea and water out of the way. I grab some injera (crepe-like bread) and scoop up some wat (veggies) and ingest. I even waited until I was done eating to lick my fingers. We had lentils, beans, collard greens, peas, cabbage, and carrots. All were served warm except for the azifah (brown lentils) which were decidedly the least favorite.
Fifteen minutes away was our next stop. My dad had ordered an adjustable height desk and needed a desk top for it, so we went to IKEA. While he waited in line with the wood of his choice, the rest of us went to the food section to search for something new. We found roe in a tube and appelkaka (Swedish cake) that filled our curiosity with already satiated bellies. We wouldn’t leave with the desk top today because it wouldn’t fit in the car and the delivery price was more than the product.
We dropped Brinn off, got burritos at Mi Pueblo, and then Brinn and Mary (his girlfriend) met us at the house to join us at the movie theater in Tempe to watch Chasing Ice – a documentary film about one guy’s quest, with lots of help from others, to capture melting glaciers with time-lapse cameras as evidence of climate change. The film stresses the determination of James Balog by talking about the amount of trouble he has gone through with multiple knee surgeries to keep him active in the field – a place that is beautiful, dangerous, and necessary for all life on Earth.
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I will probably be the only one who catches the comment about waiting to lick your fingers.