Tag Archives: friends

Puffed rice and happy memories

Last night I went out with a couple of friends to grab dinner and on our way back we passed this lady and her contraption sitting half-way in an alley:

That fire HAS to be illegal!

That fire HAS to be illegal! (Though I'm sure the woman was glad of its warmth. It was absolutely frigid!)

There might have been a squeal from JS, because she dashed over and immediately started poking at the small basket filled with bags of puffed rice and pop-corn. Ah! So this is the old-fashion way of making pop-corn! You take a massive blow-torch, hook it up to a pot with a turnable handle on it and let it GO!

JS told us a quick story of how when she was little, she’d spend her weekends with her grandparents in the small town they lived in. And every time she’d go, she’d ask for a bag of rice so that she’d be able to go visit the puffed-rice maker immediately. Then the rest of the weekend would be spent with one hand in the snack bag and  head in the school books!

And the results are delicious!

And the results are delicious!

What to do this Friday?

With less than five months to go before I ship out…I am determined to live up every Friday evening with something fun and different! I missed posting last weekend, so before I blast off for this weekend, I’d better recap.

Last Friday, I had a wonderful evening catching up at Ivo & Lulu with a friend who is attending medical school here in the City. While the ambiance was lovely (and most importantly, the company as well), the meal portions were a little less than filling. We started with their Escargots Sautés–snails served in a pernod, cayenne-curry sauce. This was absolutely divine! I would have been happy with just that and hunks of French bread. Main course was Saucisses de Lapin–tasty rabbit and ginger sausages in carrot-miso cream. I’d originally ordered the boar and sage sausages (Saucisses de Sanglier), but from what I could decipher from the waitress’s accented English and the loud conversation around us…it must have been out. Anyhow, there were exactly three links on the plate surrounding a small mound of cous cous. And that was it. I ended up having some of the Summer Squash Ragout my friend had, which was what must have been most of an acorn squash and a coconut sauce filling.

But overall, the food was tasty and most importantly…the restaurant is BYOB!

So, after many very funny med-student stories, we trekked to the Regal theater on 42nd St. to meet a few of her classmates and watch the new Nicholas Cage movie Knowing. Long story short–and no spoilers either!–I spent three-quarters of the movie curled up against the arm of my seat and the last quarter with my jaw hanging open at the cheesy ending. I officially give this movie 1 1/2 stars. It would have scored higher if it’d kept with the formula it was working with for the first three quarters.

I’m still wondering about what to do tomorrow evening…I wish we all had more time to just hang out and do fun stuff!

Pictures are forthcoming…

For the Foodie:

Ivo & Lulu @ 558 Broome St., NYC

Sleepless in NYC – Take two!

Right then, let’s try again, shall we? My earlier post was a false start…too much for my poor befuddled head to manage at 3 in the morning.

Morning over Manhatten Bridge

Morning over Manhatten Bridge

So, there I was: Eight hours of sleep, ten hours of work, an hour and a half of hummus, not-sure-how-many-hours of bubble tea and wonderful, wonderful conversation. That’s how my day was spent. It was an earlier than usual start on Friday—things needed to happen in the office. But I didn’t mind, I don’t ever mind. After all, it’s not like I have such an urgent social calendar that work is pushed to a second priority1.

Pickled at Hummus Place

Unlike most Fridays, however, yesterday evening was spent in the very pleasant company of a dear friend over hummus. Good food and good conversation. Discussion drifted from grad school in Nanjing (of course!) to family to childhood memories (how nostalgic! how foolish we were!). And before we knew it, our plans to journey up the East Side to the Asia Society had evaporated2 and we were sitting in Tkettle drinking bubble tea3. More conversation and another change of location took us to the Starbucks on the corner of St. Mark’s.

I want to ride the Snaxi!

I want to ride the Snaxi!

It’s probably a good thing we never made it the Asia Society because we had too much to catch up on! Sadly, I feel this is going to be the trend going forward…

For the Foodie:

Hummus Place @ 109 St. Mark’s Place, NYC
TKettle Drinks @ 26 St. Mark’s Place, NYC

  1. But then, I do have the tendency to put an ungodly amount of devotion into the jobs I hold. The mantra goes like this in my head: You are the Company. The Company is You. The Company sinks. And so do You. Make the Company better. Make Yourself better. []
  2. Manhattan is deceptive. It may be situated 22.96 sq. mi. piece of land, but it takes forever to get from place to place. All that subway traffic, you know? []
  3. TKettle has very typical Manhattan prices for bubble tea. $3.75 for a regular I think? They do have a bonus card that allows one to get a free regular sized drink for free after you’ve bought seven. I particularly like their Plum Oolong flavor and my friend told me their Jasmine Milk did not disappoint. []