late night love



My favorite way to heal is when it sneaks up on me.

Being a triple Scorpio, I tend to sink my teeth so hard in to something I almost break my own jaw in the gnashing trying to find resolution.

It’s easy to say to someone, to say to yourself, just let go.

But there are so many levels at play here when you’ve invested in a project, an outcome.

Let go of the outcome , I’ve been told time and time again. And I’ve mastered that in the work area of my life, very well I think.  I actually think mastering that concept has been part of the reason I’ve been able to support myself in this work, independently for nearly a quarter century (wow never wrote that one).  There’s something about knowing that deeply that helps people to trust me.  I don’t really know how to explain that so will just leave it on that.

But applying it to your family, someone you love who is drowning, that is another level of challenge all together.  And one I’m glad I’m confronting as I do think it’s honing me in it’s fire.

I’ve been gripping gripping gripping for days, weeks months with either my gloves up and teeth gnashing or poking rattlesnakes.

Either that or crashing in to some kind of recovery from that.

But last night I noticed something deeply shift and let go in my entire body/mind/spirit.  Effortlessly.  Suddenly I just felt genuinely relaxed.  Kind of out of nowhere it came like a gentle wave.

I let go.

And I’m giving the credit to my favorite restaurant FnB (stands for Food ‘n Beverage).

This gem of a food *everything* has been around for a few years but I’ve been with them from the beginning.  From the idea actually.  I’m not saying they had any idea who I was, I just was following this group around in it’s various forms.  All I can say is this food experience is magic.  And you can’t describe magic or I wouldn’t want to but just trust me on this.  It’s alchemy.

I landed in FnB three times this week (imagine that) after a several weeks or even months hiatus.  I’ve just been neglecting too many of my own feelgood things in life.

The Chef Charleen Badman and owner Pavle Milic just hit the right notes in everything but one of my favorite things to do is what they call “Late Night Love”.


I just love this photo of Pavle and Charleen who, get this, will take diners out on a plane to an island and serve them a fabulous meal.  I will do this one day!

With Late Night Love, Charleen will create one plate, maybe something she’s experimenting with for the menu or something she just wants to try for the fun of it.  And it is served for one hour, on Saturday night from 10-11 for $10.  You get what you get and it’s always something fun and fabulous.

I love going to Late Night Love.  It’s kind of decadent and European or something cool to eat your dinner that late and be with the hip crowd who show up late–usually servers or adventurous foodies, people like that.  A bit of an out of the mainstream crowd.  The rule breakers.  I like it.

My friend Marianne works there so I shot her a note yesterday “How about a little Late Night Love?” and she bit!  We’ve met there several times in the past.


that’s Mari on the right and how funny the one pic I found of her at work (this is FnB’s Bodega where she works), is with another beauty, Kirti who was also at LNL last night!

Charleen’s menu last night was “breakfast for dinner”.  She served her housemade sausage patty, the most amazing pancake I’ve ever eaten (I’m generally not a pancake person at all) made from this special locally grown and ground wheat that even someone avoiding wheat can eat (how funny does that sound?)–ok a good wheat–and a fried egg and a slice of delicious melon plus a small bowl of granola that she made herself.



this mix is sold in the Bodega–I plan to use it for Christmas

As we walked in, I saw a gentleman I’ve seen around town, in the “foodie” circles for a few years now.  He’s kind of popular in groups I dip my toe in sometimes.  Honestly I didn’t even know his name.  But, remember when Steve and I were in Sedona on his birthday weekend and that waitress called us “twin flames”?

In that very restaurant, right next to our table was this foodie fella who I now know his name:  Chris.

How funny I saw him up there at a Thai restaurant and now at Late Night Love.  Marianne introduced us and I mentioned I’d seen him in Sedona and he looked so shocked and delighted that I’d remembered him and kind of what a small world feeling.  I just said I knew who he was but had never introduced myself so didn’t intrude but I did see him.

At some point toward the end of our two hour Late Night Love eating and sharing and relaxing, Chris came back over to our table and said “I wanted to mention that I remember hearing the waitress say something to you and your friend, something about twin souls or something.  And that sparked a whole conversation with my friend and I at our table”.

Can you imagine?  Here I get that story reflected back to me through someone else’s lens.  While Steve is away in California (more on him in another post–he’s doing well, of course I miss him).

I’m telling you, the spirit of alchemy is all up in FnB.

Later in the evening, as Charleen came out and sat with us, chatting, I realized that my entire body had melted in to some form of relaxation that I’d not felt in months I don’t think.  It just happened.  Not one drop of alcohol, just a pancake, an egg, a sausage patty, a bowl of granola, a slice of cantelope and even regular coffee with cream.  My whole being, somewhere along the way had entirely let go without my thinking or directing or doing a thing.  Other than showing up to be fed at a place I love with people I love.

It’s as simple as that sometimes.  The unraveling we do so much reading and thinking about and planning for and strategizing how to do it and making time to let go and there it is, sneaking up on you in a pancake.

While chatting with Charleen, I heard this song on their sound system and asked her what it was.  She found out for me.  I listened again this morning.  Something about this song, in that spot, played in to the peacefulness that was washing through all of my cells.

I decided this morning, it was cumulative.  Something in me just kept saying “you need to go to FnB”.  I met my friend Andrea and her baby there a week ago for an early dinner and scallops.


My other friend Joi was running a bit late for our impromptu Happy Hour on Thursday so I ran over for a small snack and glass of wine with Mari before meeting her.


some kind of eggplant miso wonderfulness


only Charleen Badman could get me to love okra– this dish is crazy good!


Squash with spicy Hatch chili relish and some kinda amazing coconut sauce

Then last night’s LNL.

I am sitting here with tears thinking about how special this place and these people are to me.  How grateful I am that they followed their own vision and created this Wonderland.  How healing can be so easy sometimes when we just say yes to what we love vs. saying no to anything.  The magic of that yes creeps in and starts to take over.

I had the first full good deep night’s sleep last night I’ve had in a long time.  I woke up feeling refreshed as I’ve not in ages.  I talked to John this morning but not from this place of worry and hypervigilance, just as a loving sister checking in.  I also feel much lighter in my body even though I ate a pancake. 😉  Joke’s on me.

Thank you Pavle, Charleen, Marianne, all of your staff and fellow diners for being this place of healing for me.  For our whole community.

I won’t wait so long to get back this time.  I need you guys and your soul food.


Pavle with his adorable daughter Hannah who also works at FnB now


See you next time my dear beloved FnB.

10 thoughts on “late night love

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