Monday, March 25, 2013

Spontaneously Speaking - on the Long View......

We enjoyed our long weekend in Texas; stayed in Longview in the East of the Lone Star state, a city of some 80,000+ souls, lots of traffic, lots (and I do mean lots) of churches, and lots of eating out. Restaurants in Longview were always jam-packed whatever the time of day. We asked the receptionist at our motel why this is. He said that it surprised him when he moved to Longview, it seems that everybody eats out all the time, for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Very odd! We picked around any antique stores there then drove out to Gladewater, 15 minutes away, known as "The Antique Capital of East Texas". Maybe so - but as the previous town was "The Pancake Capital of East Texas", one does wonder if there isn't a wee bit of hyperbole goin' on.

We were lucky enough to get a table one evening at The Genghis Grill Mongolian Stir Fry restaurant close to our motel. That was a first for us - the style of meal, I mean. Customers are given a stainless steel bowl in a little stand with a small bowl attached for sauce, then pointed in the direction of the raw buffet where all manner of raw meats, fish, and vegetables are displayed, along with a goodly array of spices and sauces. This being new to us we floundered around a bit deciding what to fill our bowls with. When filled the bowl is taken to a counter where several chefs are hard at work on a huge hotplate with special tools stir frying the customers' food before adding the choice of starches (3 kinds of rice, noodles or something I can't recall) customers can choose two from the list. It was a good meal - we'd have done a return visit but the place was packed next evening when we looked in, with a queue waiting.

This is how the concept is described in the "blurb"

It's actually not a cuisine, but an INTERACTIVE style of exhibition cooking modeled after a centuries-old legend.According to this legend, 12th century Mongol warriors, led by the mighty warrior,GENGHIS KHAN heated their shields over open fires to grill food in the fields of battle!

It was a good weekend, and Birthday Boy was happy with my planning.

My husband sometimes laughs at my predilection for planning. He believes in spontaneity. Well, Sun in Aries - he would, wouldn't he? I reckon it's a moot point in life as to whether spontaneity is preferable to planning. Does a spontaneous risk taker have a better time than a planner? Spontaneity sounds good, sounds cool and exciting: The
Why don't we do it in the road?
No one will be watching us
Why don't we do it in the road?

kind of approach.

That'd be a wee bit too spontaneous for most, but over-planning, over-thinking and strictly structured living is definitely not a good thing.

Being spontaneous eliminates planning, unless one is planning to be spontaneous that is, for as Oscar Wilde said "Spontaneity is a meticulously prepared art".

Some people really do enjoy planning. I do. It's not always a matter of wanting to feel in control, it's simply a way of expanding the pleasure of... whatever, by adding anticipation to the mix. Speaking of mixes, the very best recipe is to have a mixture of planned and unplanned stuff in one's agenda, unless an agenda is to be outlawed as too control-freakish?

I find it exciting to plan, then to do something different, either from the start or during - at mid-plan stage. That way you get to enjoy both worlds! I never mind if a plan of mine goes wrong, because then the adventure begins.

In relationships of any kind control freak and spontaneous random risk-taker can be a viable combination - workable provided there is love and/or respect in the mix. One party will fill in blind spots for the other. The risk-taker will look askance at the planner from time to time, and the planner will have to get used to frequently rolling their eyes to heaven - but that's all in the game!

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