Happy Time Change Day! I wish I could say I got an extra hour of sleep, but even without an alarm set I woke up at the same time as usual, time change notwithstanding. Darned east windows, anyway.
I went to a friend’s going-away party last night. She’s getting married next weekend, and then moving to the East Coast to join her new husband. It was a great time with a lot of great food, but also a bit sad. We’ve gotten to be a tight-knit group among the book club ladies, and losing a member is hard. Yes, I know, we still have social media and FaceTime and Skype and all that, but it’s not the same as having her in the room with us. Our last hurrah as a united group will be at the wedding next weekend!
Earlier this week, I decided that I was going to try two new restaurants this month- the Korean place and the Ethiopian one. I’ve added a couple of bakeries to that list, since it turns out that there’s a Turkish bakery next door to the Ethiopian restaurant, and a friend is taking me to the Mexican bakery in the neighborhood she teaches in. Hooray for new foods and hometown bakeries!
Friday night, I went to the Korean place. It’s located in a weird spot, right between a UPS Store and an auto parts shop, so it’s often overlooked. I didn’t notice it until I started going to the UPS Store to drop off packages for work last summer, and the restaurant’s been there for two years. I’m glad I finally made up my mind to go! It’s a cozy little place, and even though I got there later in the evening than most people eat, about half the tables were full. Their primary offerings are, of course, Korean food, but they had a Thai menu as well. I didn’t really look at the Thai menu, because what kind of person goes into a Korean restaurant and orders Thai food? I ordered what my co-worker recommended– pork bulgogi– and a Thai iced tea (because I’m the sort of person who goes into a Korean restaurant and orders Thai food). It was fantastic! Spicy enough to remind me that I was eating spiced food, but not so hot as to melt my face off. I tried kimchi and pickled radish for the first time, and enjoyed them, to my surprise. I’m not usually a fan of pickled anything.
So there’s one eating establishment down. Next up, the Mexican bakery downtown!
I did not get much reading done this week. I’m not sure why, as I had the time and the attention span to manage it. I finished one book, The River of Consciousness by Oliver Sacks. It’s a collection of essays he wrote in the months before his death wherein he connects a variety of disparate topics like evolution and memory. As always, Sacks’s writing is lyrical and informative, but what’s amazing about this collection is how he was inspired by the failings of his own body as his cancer worsened. Things like his growing deafness prompted him to take a deep dive into investigating the nature of Freudian slips, and the conclusions he draws are so lucid and logical that you would think they were written by a man in his prime, and not an octogenarian dying of cancer. The world lost a beautiful mind and an all around wonderful human being when Sacks died in 2015.
The other book I’ve been working on this week is Nick Hornby’s Ten Years in the Tub: A Decade of Great Books (Stuff I’ve Been Reading), which is a collection of the articles Hornby wrote for the literary magazine, Believer. At the beginning of each chapter, he lists the books he bought that month and the books that he actually read that month. They rarely line up, and I imagine that Horny’s house must be packed so full of books that he had to buy a second house for his family to live in. Because it’s a collection of articles covering ten years, it doesn’t read like one of the ‘year of reading _________’ memoirs I’m used to. But that’s fine. I’m having fun reading it, and that’s what counts.
What’s next on the list? Nella Larsen’s Passing, a story of two friends who reunite in 1920s Harlem, and how racism affects their previously comfortable lives. It was a ‘blind date with a book’ selection I bought at Indigo Bridge Books downtown, and as it mentioned both ‘Jazz Age Harlem’ and ‘1,000 times better than The Great Gatsby’, I couldn’t resist.
And that’s all for this summary. I’m still in my pajamas, and I have a bakery adventure to prepare for!