Impromptu dinner on Siesta Key

There are as many ways of interpterting the world as there are of looking at it. My friend FBF prefers the broad view, seeing as much as possible, doing as much as one can, extending the exploit to the edge of whatever elasticity prevails, enduring the necessity of the race for the strength of the strain. His is a limitless horizon as much of his own making as nature and circumstance choose to afford him. His passion nonetheless admits the obligation of servility “because we all serve someone“, whatever narrow focus of performance one has sought in this life – in his case medicine.

You might be a rock ’n’ roll addict prancing on the stage
You might have drugs at your command, women in a cage
You may be a businessman or some high-degree thief
They may call you Doctor or they may call you Chief

But you’re gonna have to serve somebody, yes indeed
You’re gonna have to serve somebody

Gotta Serve Somebody, Bob Dylan

Within the sphere of such a person as he the imperative of stealth is required if one is to grasp even the dust in the trail. His being is insinuated by the tiny wire threads of the lower Italian peninsula, Colonial Britain and the continent of Africa. To this he has added the robust commotion of Western Canada, South Florida and a smattering of Ireland. And lately the South Pacific. He is a cosmopolitan character.

Interject this composition with fast cars, handsome women, a flair in the kitchen and an abiding conceit for Champagne and you get a sense of our impromptu dinner last evening by the sea as the evening star glimmered in the dark sky above. The very pleasant film of garlic lingers even today as I reminisce and amuse myself in the mid-afternoon sun alone by the pool, the balmy breeze drifting faintly over me. I rejoice in the stunningly rich music of Ludovico Einaudi. The yachts in the slip bob and the wind mounts across the blue water of Sarasota Bay, now rippling.

Our exceedingly pliable evening was as always in the company of this intellectual and generous man ornamented with frivolity and pressing political discussion. We talked of mystery books and articles in the London Times; of island hopping in the Caribbean and the place where the rich and famous go to be unseen; of his children and friends.

The soaring pelicans dive with a splash.

The meal was a delight from beginning to end overlooking the dark sea. We feasted upon healthful crisps with guacamole dip alongside smoked fish filets; and then the highlight – elemental shrimp and pasta made with lots of butter, olive oil, garlic, scallions, pepper flakes and salt. There were Caffarel Gianduia chocolates for dessert.

Into the darkness we drove, along the sub-tropical avenues skirting Sarasota Bay, under the stirring palm trees, a reminder of my late night passage in Kingston, Jamaica years ago from the Liguanea Club to Stoney Hill. Up the long curved bridge nearby the Gulf of Mexico onto Washington Street to Longboat Key and home.