28 July 2008

Composter Down!

I biked to the twice monthly Santa Monica Flea Market at the Santa Monica Airport. The selection of goods was so much better than the Fairfax High Flea Market last month. I walked away with two tablecloths and a kitchen towel. I could’ve bought a lot more, but I am trying to cut back.

Donny and I planned on rinsing out the composter today. Fun Sunday, right?? Stringy food and large pieces have made the inside a bit messy. The motor sounds like it is overheating and stuff is getting stuck inside. I pull the tray out to empty it before we could get the cleaning underway and a weird red plastic stripe had become visible. There is no way the composter can be fixed. I called Naturemill, but their phone number doesn’t transfer you to a live person. I think it is because they are such a small company. I emailed them and posted a comment to their website. Hopefully whatever is broken is covered under the 1 year warranty and they will send us a replacement. We have gotten used to it for months now. It completely changed our kitchen habits and without it all we really have is a big steel pot to throw our scraps in. I hope they get back to us soon.

After a 24 mile evening bike ride down to Hermosa Beach and back up to Venice we walked to a sushi restaurant nearby home for dinner. On the walk Donny and I passed by a 3 day new restaurant on Abbot Kinney called Gjelina (pronounced "jelina"). The interesting thing about this place is that their slogan is "EAT LOCAL". We nabbed a menu and right off the bat noticed German beer on tap, French wine and proscuitto from Iowa. However they also noted having market lettuce, homemade condiments and San Fransisco steak. Our waitress at the sushi joint, Wabi Sabi, told us that her manager, Robert Schwan, had left them to manage Gjelina. The waitress also thought the local aspect went only as far as delights from the farmer's market. It seems like kind of a cop out in my mind, considering all that is available in this region. And for a restaurant with such a strong slogan it doesn't add up but hey, I'll talk to the restaurant directly and get the scoop. To be continued.

27 July 2008

Rooftop Gardening

Yesterday was a successful day in continuing our rooftop garden. Donny already planted a caribbean red pepper, 3 regular red peppers, 2 kinds of basil, 2 tomato plants, and a mint plant. Together we planted 4 cloves of garlic and an asparagus plant. And for a few weeks now we’ve been breeding horsetail. It’s on the expensive side, so Donny thought it would be a good idea to split up one container into two and let them grow. Horsetail is really just a weed and it’s been multiplying pretty rapidly. (see picture)

Our neighbor's cat has spent a bit too much time near our plants, and by that I mean he thinks our plants and our roof is his bathroom. In defiance of him we spent the day making custom fencing around each pot with a big roll of chicken wire-type we bought at Home Depot. All of the pots look so uniform and hopefully will keep unwanted animals out.

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