Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Table for Two #2


A comment from one of last night's Table for Two guests:
"A space where both of us connected new. A meal straight from the heart. A very soothing atmosphere created with love—made with Love. I loved the spices in the food and drinks. Thank you for the spicy experience!" (V. L-F)

Last night's Table for Two was magical and delicious and lived up to its nature of "alternative dining experience". I was too immersed in preparing food, serving, washing up and ensuring that my two guests/customers were happy, that I didn't take time to take photos. Maybe it's better to leave it as 'what goes on there stays there' and those who are curious will have to come and see/taste/experience for themselves.

Makes sense. Each couple is different, so each experience will be different. After all, it is "made for you". Exactly what this means, you will have to find out for yourself when you book your special table.

Table for Two can be for any two people—lovers, spouses, friends, family, business partners ... any combo you can think of.

Come with an open mind and an empty stomach and prepare to be treated to exactly what you need in that moment.

I also advise you to bring a shawl or (as suggested last night by my guests) I can provide blankets. It is cosy outside at the table, flanked by trees, with the sea roaring in the distance ... but it can also get quite chilly with the Atlantic Breeze. Two cozy blankets are a good idea.

To book your Table for Two (Tobago), please call me at (868) 381-8359. Any night except Wednesday and Friday.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

I'm Brave Enough.

On Sunday I went out with two friends, one of whom has a son, J, about 8 years old. He is one of the children in my Wednesday evening Yoga sessions for children.

We spent a few hours at our location—what used to be Arnos Vale Waterwheel Restaurant but is now a deserted property ... a beautiful, deserted property, might I add. So much potential.

Even though quiet and desolate, the property still felt like it had life in it ... and I don't mean the trees and the hundreds of bats now occupying the various rooms.  It was almost like being in a movie and seeing faint impressions of diners and socialites milling around, laughing, drinking, eating, listening or dancing to the live band on the now what-must-be-rotten stage across the little river from the old restaurant. 

In the kitchen, a light was still on. In one of the rooms, water was streaming from the tap, which we were unable to turn off because it seemed to be rusted in an open position.

There was a little sunny stone circle in the midst of the property, under some trees. "Perfect for yoga!" I said. My two companions (who are in my adult yoga class) agreed. J then led us through a yoga session, a children's version. I was impressed. Despite the noise and apparent distraction they sometimes exhibit in our yoga sessions, they are still listening and taking it all in.

While on our outing, I spent most of my time in J's company and noticed a phrase he kept repeating. At one point, he and I were looking for a path through some bush to get down to the small river. He said: "I'm brave enough to go here!" and charged ahead, almost like a knight on a horse brandishing a sword in the air.

At another point, we noticed a track that was leading up through some bush to an area out of our sight. He said: "I'm brave enough to go up here! Who's coming?" Of course I was right behind him, admiring his simple but powerful mantra:

"I'm brave enough!"

What are you brave enough to do today ... or any day?

Monday, February 18, 2013

In Tobago: An alternative Dining Experience

Click to enlarge image
 
TABLE FOR TWO
Made for you

More than simply “dining”, Table for Two is a multi-layered creative and culinary experience for just you and your companion.  Savour a world of surprises at your dinner table—inclusive of unique vegetarian cuisine created for you and simple, inspired works of art created by you. 
 
Natural surroundings. Magical ambience.  Delicious memories.
 
Location: Tobago
Open every evening except Wednesday & Friday
 
Reservations: Call your chef/hostess, Elspeth, at (868) 381-8359
Please book at least 2 days in advance.
Short notice reservations will be accepted, availability permitting.
 
*****
 
From the Table for Two guest book:
 
“This was a truly wonderful experience. The food was delicious and the ambience surpassed my expectations. Thank you, Elspeth, for this truly unique and enjoyable evening.” (Araceli M, Trinidad)
 
“The ambience was awesome. I loved hearing the sea in the background. The meals were not only healthy, but tasty. The activities were creative and allowed room for self-expression. Merci beaucoup, Chef E!!!” (Rachelle R., Trinidad)


Saturday, February 16, 2013

In Tobago: Yoga for children brings us peace


Given their excessive level of energy and noise-making, when I first started doing yoga sessions (The Art of You) with the children in Buccoo, the greatest challenge for them was to sit still and keep quiet (meditate) for even one minute. 

This has changed over time (four months). In our last two or three sessions, the noisiest and most disruptive of the lot has actually been begging for moments of silence. Wednesday gone, toward the end of the class, they remained completely still, eyes closed, lying on their backs on their mats on the grass for about 3 minutes. I was impressed ...

Please visit our indiegogo campaign to see how you can support continued Art of You sessions:
http://www.indiegogo.com/TheArtOfYou/x/2159734

Friday, February 15, 2013

In Tobago: An alternative dining experience

Click on image to enlarge

 TABLE FOR TWO
Made for you. 
More than simply “dining”, Table for Two is a multi-layered creative and culinary experience for just you and your companion.  Savour a world of surprises at your dinner table—inclusive of unique vegetarian cuisine created for you and simple, inspired works of art created by you. 
Natural surroundings. Magical ambience.  Delicious memories.
$100US ($630TT)
Location: Tobago
Open every evening except Wednesday & Friday
Reservations: Call your chef/hostess, Elspeth, at (868) 381-8359
Please book at least 2 days in advance.
Short notice reservations will be accepted, availability permitting.
*****
From the Table for Two guest book:
“This was a truly wonderful experience. The food was delicious and the ambience surpassed my expectations. Thank you, Elspeth, for this truly unique and enjoyable evening.” (Araceli M, Trinidad)
“The ambience was awesome. I loved hearing the sea in the background. The meals were not only healthy, but tasty. The activities were creative and allowed room for self-expression. Merci beaucoup, Chef E!!!” (Rachelle R., Trinidad)

Thursday, February 14, 2013

In Tobago: Valentine's Day Yoga House Call

There was a time when I wrote on this blog at least once daily. In the past year blogging has been sporadic and, at times, dormant. But recently I 'ketch a vapse' and decided to return to the blogosphere, especially as I am now living in Tobago and there are so many simple but meaningful things happening within and around me.

Today was off to an interesting start. I blogged about it on Thou Art Yoga's blog (here is the post about the house-call yoga session).

It was a lovely experience. I look forward to more.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Resurrection

Now that the season is becoming more dry, leaves are constantly blowing in, especially with the strong winds from the Atlantic. As quickly as leaves are swept up, they return.

Yesterday I noticed a leaf in the corner of my room near the sliding door, but I didn't pay it much attention. I saw it again today ... but something made me do a double take and I realised it was not a leaf. It was a green and browny-orange hummingbird—just like the kind that often flies into my apartment, hovers near me and flits back out again.

Twice I had heard strange noises coming from my room and, upon investigation, saw a green and browny-orange hummingbird beating against the glass window. Both times it allowed me to hold it for long enough to open the window and set it free. It was both a fantastic feeling and an honour to hold a bird that is so fast, fragile and fleeing.

Now as I held the dead body, I wondered if it was my little friend—the same bird that always came. Just that this time I had not been around to open the window for it and it had scared or beaten itself to death against the glass. Its eyes were open and strangely enough, its body was still warm and supple. Normally birds get stiff and coldish when they die. What I also found interesting was that it had obviously been on the floor for a while, but no ants had yet started to consume its body.

The funeral was small ... me and 12 year old N, who dug a hole with a small shovel. I placed two mango leaves cross-crossed on the bird's body, then we topped the hole back with soil and decorated the grave with two orange flowers, a bunch of white bougainvilla and an almost-heartshaped white pebble.

About half an hour later as I sat on the floor near the door with my laptop, I noticed something out of the side of my eye. I looked up and saw a hummingbird just like the one we had buried, flitting nearby amidst the leaves of the mango tree. Only now as I write this am I noting the coincidence ... of the mango leaves placed on the dead bird's body.


Monday, February 11, 2013

Mot Mot Mates & Moments

Image of Mot Mot from this source

This morning I took my yoga mat and walked further down on the land where there is a trail leading between the trees near the sea. I placed the mat under a shady section and lay down. Looking up, I saw a mot mot perched on a branch, looking down at me. I've noticed that mot mots sit still for very long periods, unlike other birds.

In its calm demeanour I sensed inner confidence, and a solidity of knowing that it didn't have to rush around in life. Content to sit there for as long as it took to enjoy the breeze ... because life was taken care of. The longer I stared at it, I felt it say—be still, be patient, be silent.

The next thing I knew, I was waking up. At first I thought I was in my room and that it was early morning. Then I opened my eyes and realized that I was still under the tree, with the mot mot still looking at me from its perch, like a Guardian. It felt like hours later. Had I been asleep that long? Had the bird been sitting there that long?

Moments later a small hummingbird hovered above me and also perched on a branch above my mat. It stayed still surprisingly long for a hummingbird ... then something moved and both the hummingbird and mot mot flew from their branches. The mot mot, which now had a yellow leaf in its beak, flew to another branch and released the leaf, which spiraled to the ground.

As I raised my body to sitting position, the mot mot flew to another branch, to my right. It was quickly joined by another mot mot which sat next to it. Perfectly still, both of them, looking in front of them, content.

I got up to walk back up to the house and they stayed on their perch until I was feet away. Then they flew off together.