Not last Saturday but the Saturday before that, M. and I decided to drive down to see the trees. I can't remember why we drove instead of walked. But it was such a beautiful day that after we said hello and whispered sweet nothings into their branches, pulled away some weeds and took some photos (oh yes, that's why we drove. M. had his souped up camera), we decided to get back in the car and keep driving. We had heard rumors of a new "Asia Mall" down the road from the trees in an unlikely spot of town. Today seemed like a good day to explore.
This little strip mall, what a find. a new Thai restaurant next to an unnamed place where people were slurping pho = awesome. But the grocery store! Holy moly. We're not talking little hole in the wall "oriental market." This place was the size of smaller supermarket. And packed with all things dried, preserved, crushed into pastes. Live tilapia! Seeweed in bunches! Along with fruits and vegetables I have no names for. We couldn't navigate through the shoppers in the noodle aisle. Wow. wow. wow. I was in heaven. M. was slightly queasy. And now all I've been doing is digging out old recipes whose ingredients are now within my reach. Yes!
We left the mall and kept on driving down roads that we both know from our youth but don't really find ourselves on much anymore and had the realization that, d*mn. There are a lot of Vietnamese places in our little town. Let's pick up some menus. I wonder whose Pho is the best.....
And from that thought emerged our new Saturday Morning Adventure.
Every Saturday morning, we shall rise and go get a plate of hot steamy brothy noodles from a different place.
This Saturday was our inaugural meal. At a place in the city that was just up the street from our old apartment. At a place we once suspected was merely a cover for something illicit since the parking lot was always filled with expensive (read: out of place in the neighborhood) cars on Saturday mornings. Oh ho. We were so, so wrong.
The parking lot is full because by the time we left our near empty bowls (note to self - get the "small" next time) the place was full. With families, with couples, with a trio of older men who were each nearly 7 feet tall (????) The atmosphere was lively, the food delicious, the experience something to make me look forward to, not dread my weekends.
One bowl down, many to go. I cannot wait for next Saturday morning.
Great plan! Sounds like a perfect, soothing way to start the weekend.
Love it. When you work your way through all the pho places in H'burg, come over to Philly and keep exploring (and we'll join you!)
Fun! I love pho and exploring new foods. Too bad I don't live closer, it would be great to join you.
So living in rural NH I had never had Pho - but then I read this and HAD to try it. I searched and searched online and found a place that had good reviews and we ordered some take out Friday night...yum! I'm guessing that eating in would be an even better experience, but since getting out is hard lately we had to settle for the at-home experience. I'm so excited to have a new food obsession...
such a great idea! I LOVE Pho. when we were in vietnam, i was still a veg- oh, chris loves to tease me about my endless search for veggie pho. now, i am psyched that i eat chicken- makes it way easier.
we spent last sunday trying tacos from all the taco trucks that hang out along 95 on the water. so fun!
What a fun idea. We've noticed in the DC area that the quality of the pho seems to be inversely proportional to the income level of the neighborhood.
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