The menu was impressive--lots of good things to choose from. A few of the reviews mentioned a server who thought he was a comedian, and seemed to irritate folks. I knew immediately that we had this server when he walked by our still-empty table and asked, "How's the food?" I wasn't irritated at all--I laughed. This seemed to encourage him, and he kept us entertained for the rest of the meal.
The pho was really good. Much better than the place we usually go to. Even the small bowl had enough to take home for a second serving. We had an order of spring rolls, and they were good too. It reminded me of when I used to sell beat-up wicker furniture at a flea market in Marin County in the early 1980s. Our space was right next to a Vietnamese woman who sold spring rolls. Some of the best I have ever tasted.
The wicker came from my sister's husband at the time, who worked for an importer. The idea was that we would sell the pieces that he could't sell to places like Pier 1 or Cost Plus. Every weekend my brother-in-law would show up with a truck packed with stuff and we would sell it. I got 25%. I didn't have anything else going on back then, so it was a good way to spend the weekend.
It turned out that my brother-in-law wasn't just selling the remainders. He was loading up the truck with the good stuff on friday night after everyone else went home. He eventually got fired. I still have a couple of nice wicker chairs and a plaster pig head that hangs on my back fence.
Our houseguest told Malida about a little Laotian market, so we checked it out after our pho. Malida loved it--lots of stuff she likes, and a counter that sells the best papaya salad in northern California. It is interesting that since she has been here, she has managed to satisfy almost every food-related need she has, except for durian. We are fortunate to have an entire district in Sacramento devoted to Southeast Asian restaurants and markets.
Our houseguest has been approved for an apartment, and will be moving out the first part of May. She has been a great guest. Very unobtrusive, but always empties the dishwasher and tidies up the kitchen, even if she hasn't been using it. I expect we will miss her when she moves out--it's been nice to have her here.
I had another picture ready to go for this post (related to the subject), but it just doesn't fit with where this went, so I will post another photograph of the irises from yesterday. Next Sunday we are planning to head up to Loomis and see the iris farm up there and have lunch at the High Hand nursery, one of our favorite places.
In a comment to my last post, someone mentioned that they didn't know I had another lj prior to this one. I did. It was called myasma. It started back in the latter part of 2002, a little less than a year before my wife was diagnosed with cancer.
When I look back at the first entries, I am struck by how settled and mundane my life was. It eventually ended up being a journal of my experience with my wife's illness and death, as well as probably the best support system I had throughout that time. My wife died in November of 2004. I started this journal in October of 2006, just as I was beginning to make plans to go to Southeast Asia for the first time (where I would eventually meet Malida). It was a new start for me. It's hard to believe that was almost 8 years ago.