People-watching, eating, and walking – my favorite things to do when out in a new place. I got to part-take in all three activities on my first day visiting a friend in NYC.
We grabbed a delicious brunch at Barbounia in Manhattan.
Watched a game of street-polo and families with young children in local parks.
Grabbed snacks in Chinatown.
Almond milk bubble tea and red bean bun. Yum!
Saw some great architecture.
Traversed the Brooklyn Bridge, where I swear we passed Sandra Bullock and I ran into an old acquaintance who had moved into the city in the past year.
And grabbed a Mexican dinner in Brooklyn.
Empanadas and a grilled avocado
Had we not been worn out by all the walking and if there had been better weather, we would have wandered deeper into Brooklyn to watch the sunset at Prospect Park. Even without that final adventure, we had quite an ambitious day of touring the city. On to more adventures tomorrow!
I’m always thankful for when an undergrad friend offers a guest meal for us to spend time together. Today I had an exceptionally good meal with a fish taco, sauteed vegetables, and tater tots. It may be sad to admit that this was my best meal of the week, given that it was dining hall food. Nonetheless, it was a great meal that I got to share with a great friend.
I took a shot at making sweet plantains today. Every time I make them, I’m brought back to memories of my summers in Latin America where I indulged on this side. Now I cook these plantains when I feel like treating myself.
This past week, I forgot to bring my lunch to my tutoring work. Fortunately, as one teacher claimed, “There cam be worse places than Chelsea [MA] to forget your lunch.” Chelsea boasts a plethora of Latin American restaurants at each street corner. I took advantage of having forgotten my lunch to buy a couple of bean pupusas, which my Salvadorean students also brag about, and some fried sweet plaintains. I enjoyed the lunch in the good company of the other teachers.
I always enjoy the routines that go into hosting a family dinner party. I’m not much of a cook, so I usually take charge of setting the table, arranging fruit, and preparing dessert. My brother, who is an expert at preparing meat, has been testing out new dishes for the past few dinners, such as roast beef last Christmas and goose for a family gathering this year. During the dinner, I like transporting dishes from the kitchen to the dining room, fetching tea or coffee for the guests once they are finished with dinner, and carrying over the post-dinner treats. From my younger days, I still enjoy carrying over the dirty plates and utensils and scrubbing them down once the guests have left. My favorite chore at the end has always been drying the utensils my mom had just washed and placing them accordingly into a fancy box we keep them in for these occasions. The skills I have acquired for these dinners have served me when I worked catering for university commencement events. I only hope that I know enough to manage my own dinner parties some day!
For part of my celebration of finishing the semester, I headed to the Prudential Center, one of the malls in Boston. I felt that I needed time out in the city as I wrapped up the semester before I headed home. As I spent some time reflecting on the semester and sending thank you’s to people who had really helped me out this semester, I realized how much of a craving my sweet tooth had. My roommate and I had originally planned to bake cookies that night, but upon texting her we both decided to meet up at the mall’s Cheesecake Factory instead. I treated myself to some nice Moscato wine, chicken lettuce tacos, and the Godiva cheesecake. I’m usually someone who’s always on her feet running errands or getting to class or a meeting, so I very much appreciated being able to sit back and relax a little bit with some good food before having to finish up all final responsibilities before heading home for break.
The other day I took time to clean out my kitchen. As I was clearing the top of my fridge of appliances and vegetabkes I have kept for too long, I came upon this onion I had forgotten about since September. I discovered that due to the humidity in our apartment, it had sprouted! I have been challenged to plot the vegetabke, which something I am considering since I have been interested in learning a bit about gardening.