There’s nothing like a long weekend where you feel productive and truly relax.
For an introvert, this is a delicate balance that’s rarely accomplished. We like to be alone. Sometimes we prefer it. But too much time alone also makes for an unhappy introvert.
The past two weeks were sprinkled with social gatherings and work actually hasn’t felt too hectic. This all led to a pretty good weekend.
My weekend goals were simple: Go out to eat a few times, clean up the yard, cook something, see John Wick 3. Last but not least, to finish Dead To Me, a newer Netflix series starring Christina Applegate, Linda Cardellini and James Marsden.
Jake and I have different approaches to trying new restaurants.
It’s not that he won’t try new places with me. But once he finds his *favorite* version of something, he knows it and feels hesitant to branch out. After all, it’s a sure bet.
For me, the joy is in the journey. I might find something I really like, and might even love. But I can’t move past the nagging curiosity that my new favorite might be around the corner.
It’s no secret that we both love Quang, Minneapolis institution serving Vietnamese food since 1989. This Eater piece commemorates their new remodel and shares the family’s story. I took Jake here on a lark one holiday and he’s never looked back.
At Vietnamese restaurants, Jake always orders pho with the thinly sliced raw beef. I always order the Hu Tieu soup with rice noodles and a variety of pork, and seafood.
Read more about our love for Quang and the delivery by Door Dash here.
The thing about the Twin Cities is that we are rich with good Vietnamese restaurants. If you ask residents where to find the best bowl of pho, they’re all going point you towards a good bowl of pho.
Our dining-out adventures have been casual and close-to-home, lately.
Between the snow and polar vortez cold snap, we haven’t wanted to drive very far. Never in my life have I felt -26 (and worse). Walking the 2.5 blocks to the bus was unbearable. I thought my legs were going to give out and collapse after running one block. The house cracked, but our boiler held up. Every potty break for our dog went something like that Bird Box conversation where Sandra Bullock was yelling at her kids.
“UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES ARE YOU ALLOWED TO TAKE OFF YOUR BOOTS. . . YOU HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING I SAY OR WE WILL NOT MAKE IT! DO YOU UNDERSTAND.”
We’ve gotten together with family for various occasions and visited our favorites like Stewart’s for patty melts and Himalayan on Lake Street for our typical order of garlic naan, fried okra and potatoes, chicken tikka masala and palek paneer, all spicy.
Find yourself a good bar close enough to tromp through the snow to.
Here are a couple of new things we tried in St. Paul:
- Pad Thai
These are foods that I really like but can’t cook well.
The only pancakes I can make somewhat well is Jenny’s recipe for Grandma’s Featherlight Pancakes.
Buttermilk pancakes had been on my mind all week. On Friday, I rode the early bus downtown and wearily stumbled up to my desk. I perked up upon opening the cafeteria menu and seeing the breakfast special was buttermilk pancakes.
Suddenly the day felt shorter. I perked up.
Becoming comfortable dining alone is a satisfying part of adulthood.
Our parents probably warned about the un-funness of bills, cleaning, fixing things and working. Sometimes eating ice cream for breakfast is the most satisfying part of a tough day. I’ve also found that pulling up a seat at any bar to order the food and beverage of my choice is very satisfying.
Dining alone used to terrify me. One May term in college, I spent an entire month eating alone in my dorm room. My roommates and best friends were gone and I felt too embarrassed to eat in the cafeteria. I literally ate baby carrots, oranges, ramen, and grilled cheese sandwiches all month.
If I could go back in time as current me, I would stroll into that cafeteria and and sit wherever I wanted. Of course, there’s a lot I’d tell my younger self.