Weekend travels

(Mormon Temple. Kensington, Maryland. Photo by Robin. 2007)

It seems no Life in the Bogs entry lately can be posted without some reference to Mormons. (Perhaps Mormons will become the official mascots of Life in the Bogs.) This one, as you can see, will be no different. No worries, though. I have not had any run-ins with the Sisterhood lately. We happened to pass the Mormon Temple I photographed above while on our way to visit friends in the Washington, DC area over the weekend. While I would love to see the inside of what appears to be a beautiful temple, it’s my understanding that those of us who are not members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (“Mormons”) are not allowed in. Understandable. This is sacred ground to them. Even those who are of the LDS faith have to meet certain requirements to gain access to and experience the temples. (You’ll have to scroll down on that Wikipedia link to find the requirements.)

For those interested in such things, the temple is reinforced concrete sheathed in Alabama white marble and the design is said to represent the Church as “a light to the world.” It was opened in 1974.

All this digression is due to the fact that the temple dominates the scenery on a certain portion of I-495 (the Capital Beltway). I missed the “Surrender Dorothy” graffiti (a reference to how the temple resembles the Emerald City) if it was there. From time to time the graffiti appears on a railroad bridge over the highway, the temple in the background. The Mormons frown on that graffiti so it is periodically removed when it is periodically replaced.

We had a great time on our trip. It was good to see our friends again. We arrived at their home around 2:00pm on Saturday. Another friend from Ohio, in DC for a meeting, arrived about the same time. We had some beer, did a lot of talking, and then went out for a nice walk around the neighborhood.

Dinner that night was at the Dogfish Head Alehouse. The beer was excellent. The food was okay. That often seems to be the case in these beer-related restaurants (brew pubs, etc.). No matter. The main thing about such a dinner is the good company, good conversation, and laughter. It was all good.

We watched a movie after dinner: Babel. Strange but powerful film. More than a little glum. Still, I’d recommend it. (Definitely not for children.)

Sunday we had a late breakfast of dim sum. The restaurant was packed, the dim sum was yummy, and it was a little too loud for conversation. That’s okay. It gave us more time to enjoy the dim sum. It was also surprisingly cheap ($11 per person).

After breakfast we went for walk on along the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal in Great Falls. The Potomac River was raging and quite an amazing sight. I have lots of photos which I’ll be sharing in my next entry.

Right now, I should be doing something about tonight’s dinner. Such as cooking it.

Simple salad

For Alto 2.

It’s just your basic salad with a Greek flair. I threw together some chopped romaine lettuce, red peppers, green onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, grated carrots, kalamata olives, artichoke hearts, and some feta cheese.

The dressing:

  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped red onion
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano (I like Greek oregano)
  • Dash kosher salt
  • Dash freshly ground black pepper

Whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, and red onion. Let it sit for a few minutes. Throw in the rest, whisk, and voila! A tasty Greek vinaigrette.

Measurements are approximate since I generally add to suit my taste so you might want more or less of the spices.