It’s the end of our gloriously long winter break here at UW Madison and, in anticipation of another filled semester in the SLIS department, some of us early risin’ MetaDiners decided to take a walk today! Snow finally chose to fall, which meant it’d be quite a cold walk … and we all seemed to forget our snow shoes at home.
The winter ramble of the Madison Arboretum begins!
This was a perfect end to the break. All of us were spirited, talkative, happy, and awake. We all quickly forgot the cold and the warnings of impending freezing rain — which, to me, the Californian, sounds apocalyptic. We actually also met a few other people on the trail, all of whom either had snow shoes or cross-country skis (neither of which I remember ever seeing in person!); we got scolded for not walking in the middle, thereby ruining the trail for the cross-country skiers … Then we got ran off the middle of trail by a cross-country skiier! Maybe we were a little lost …
Eventually, we found our way to a frozen pond. As aforementioned, I’m from California, as is my boyfriend Derek (the token boy today). This month in Madison is his absolute first time in snow! I’ve been in it a couple of times when I was young, so I don’t remember much of anything. I can’t say for sure whether this is true, but I’m fairly certain I’ve never seen or walked upon a frozen pond. It took a lot of coaxing to get me onto the ice. Caitlin, the organizer of this event, however, had a jolly good time jumping up and down on the ice.
A bit of merriment upon frozen water.
The above image was taken right after Meg, pictured on the right, told the rest of us that I once asked, “What’s ice fishing?” Meg has even started a twitter hash tag devoted to me: #thingscalifornianssay.
Eating fresh-squeezed snow.
Derek and Dana: the token Californians
Meg, shortly after receiving a snowball right in her eye.
Jessica looking bright and happy in her lovely red cap!
We spent some time around the pond, eating ice, taking pictures, and throwing snowballs. But by 10:30, we had worked up quite an appetite, so we did what we do best: eat.
Meg and Jessica need to refuel from the rambling with some m&ms.
Okay, we didn’t just eat m&ms! With Caitlin’s suggestion, we all headed over to Bluephies Restaurant and Vodkatorium. Since it’s Sunday and brunch time, you can bet it was quite busy. We were seated in a cozy backroom with lots of light and not too much noise. The place is decorated with lots of dark blue, red and yellow, and it’s quite easy on the eyes. 🙂
Most of us ordered coffee, hot chocolate, or mocha, but Meg and Allison went for a special Bloody Mary, which ended up being mostly very filling. Then we were sad to find out that they didn’t have fried cheese curds; the cold snowy weather made us so hungry for cheesy fried goo. And then, it was simply difficult to figure out what to eat!
Amanda had a delicious feta-filled scrambler, Jessica ate a fantastic plate of French toast with compote, Meg had a huge breakfast burrito she couldn’t finish (it had guacamole! that’s the main reason she ordered it, haha), Allison had an orangey plate of eggs benedict goodness, Caitlin had the Hungover Benedict with lots of grease to fuel that hangover, Derek had the jambalaya bowl, and I had a flight of 3 different kinds of pancakes: compote, pecan, and chocolate chip.
A perfectly spiced eggs benedict with artichoke and roasted red pepper.
Some of our best MetaDiners chowing down!
The Bluephies Pancake Flight: compote, pecans, and chocolate chips
Nearly everyone finished their plate clean, which is always a good sign. I have to say that my pancakes were a tad dry, but the compote was especially good with a slightly tangy and sweet flavor to rest on your tongue. I think next time (and there will be a next time) I will get that artichoke benedict, though I really think it should be asparagus!
So, MetaDiners, I hope you had a wonderful holiday and that you are completely ready for this coming semester. Because, it’s here!