Friday, March 26, 2010

Vacation has officially started!

Well the do nothing/no agenda portion :)

After a mighty productive morning (which included blogging!) I ran out to meet with an old coworker in the Mission for drinks. I totally showed public transportation who's boss! I must say, the buses here are AWESOME compared to DC - they actually take you places!

I planned to meet Friend at the Make Out Room not long after hitting 'post' on my blog. Eek! It looked far! Thanks to the genius 511.org, I was able to time and plan my trip (also better and more accurate than WMATA's trip planner) accordingly :)

So the Make Out Room - at first sight I thought 'Whaat? Friend wants to go here?!'
However, when I walked closer and popped my head in, I heard some fun 80s/early 90s music and all was well again. Rail drinks and beers are a mere $3!
We caught up over a couple drinks and then moved onto Medjool around the corner. Medjool was definitely snazzier than the Make Out Room, but not crowded at all.
We settled at a corner loungy table and enjoyed some delicious sangria and a plate of hummus, babagnoush, and tabbouleh. Great snacks to go with the sangria and a caipirinha that somehow ended up in front of me later in the evening (a little reminder of how I love cachaça). It was really great catching up and relaxing over drinks - perfect way to start vacation.

Made my way back to Selin's and vowed to have a sleep-in day today. Um, that doesn't work out too well when you're still a little jet lagged. Ha. I lingered for a bit and then began my day of exploring a couple neighborhoods.

I started off with some Guava Pandas for breakfast:
Yes, not quite the breakfast of champions, but they were yummy. I grabbed this bag yesterday since I needed cash for the bus. They were a little pricey, but I thought they were delicious. Not too sweet, plus I love all things gummy :)

I snacked on the pandas while hoofing up some pretty massive hills and caught some phenomenal views:
Pretty sweet, ya? GORGEOUS weather! Eventually, I came across this:
Stairs built into a hill. Pretty sure that means it's really steep. The views were worth the huffing and puffing:


I wandered into a few shops along the way before hopping on a bus to Saigon Sandwich! I've been looking forward to this for quite some time. Remember my first visit in November? Obsessed!

This time I went with the Special Combination (Roast Pork, Steamed Pork, Pate) and a Chicken Bun for good measure. I walked a bit after leaving so I could grab a bus to explore another area and find a place to eat my glorious Banh Mi. SO proud of myself for mastering the buses :)

I walked along Polk Street and stumbled on a cute store called Cheese Plus. They had a bunch of different cheeses (duh) and some interesting condiments. I walked out with a couple items, including a refreshing bevy:
Have you tried GuS Sodas? If you haven't, I recommend you do. I think they're awesome. The first one I had was Cranberry Lime and it tasted almost exactly like the mix I do at home (lime bubbly water and a splash of cranberry juice)...not too sweet and tons of bubbles! The Valencia Orange one reminded me of a less sweet version of Orangina.

At some point, I got really hungry and decided to bust into my chicken bun from Saigon Sandwich. No picture, because I was walking while eating. That was challenging enough. Plus, it wasn't very good. It was cold and not as flavorful as I wanted it to be. Plus, there were a couple unexpected items in it - a hard boiled egg and a piece of chinese sausage. MEH? I mean, it wasn't an accident. They were strategically placed in the middle of the bun. Not exactly my type of filling. I'm not a chinese sausage fan and the combination of that and the egg pretty much spoiled my snack. Fail.

Eventually I got closer to Selin's and decided to hang out in a nearby park since it was so nice out. I sat and figured it was about time I got comfortable with my banh mi :)
Hello! I love you! That little white bit on the left side is the steamed pork. I wasn't really sure what to expect when I saw steamed pork listed, but I soon realized it's sort of like deli meat. You know how deli turkey or chicken comes in a big ball and is usually pumped up with water? That's what the pork looked like.
The pate was a great little addition to the sandwich - just a slight liver taste...nothing too in your face.

I also now know what was missing from that banh mi I had in Columbia Heights. FLAVOR! ha. Saigon Sandwich's mayo is legit. it has all the flavor in it. The sweet, and savory flavor of the mayo sauce plus the pate. flavorful roast pork, and crisp veggies make it so great.

More to come...caipirinhas and fish tacos for dinner!

1 comment:

trialsoftraining said...

ha I'm pretty sure *anything* you get in Columbia Heights will probably be lacking, compared to Cali ;)

Love the photos!! so adventurous over there :) Glad you're having fun!