Saturday I had the best day. Someone I’m turning 21 on Thursday, and since we don’t see eachother too much, and he hates making decisions, Jeff decided we’d start celebrating my birthday on Saturday. For the day, he responded to every question with “whatever you want,” and I felt spoiled silly.
After teaching (which for the record was not “whatever I wanted” to do Saturday morning) we went out to lunch at a Thai restaurant. Lately I’ve been sick of Chinese food, but since non-Chinese means a hefty price tag, I haven’t stepped out too much. The restaurant was really nice — we even saw another customer take a picture of it with his camera-phone. The food was also really good, mainly because it tasted like non-Chinese food.
After lunch, we continued doing whatever I liked and went to Cold Stone — also a hefty price, both for my wallet and my health. I had a Boston Cream Pie, which is vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, whipped cream and cake. It was delicious, and it really did taste like a Boston Cream pie. I also got it in a waffle bowl, since it was my “birthday” after all.
After ice cream, we went window shopping and watched “Heroes.” Then it was time for dinner, which was again, my choice. We had Xinjiang food, which comes from China’s Xinjiang province. You may have heard of Xinjiang from articles about civil unrest there. You see, the people in Xinjiang are not ethnically Han Chinese, and are mostly Muslim. It’s easy to see how the somewhat xenophobic and anti-religion government could be at odds with this group of outsiders. While the government is bent on keeping the rogue province tightly within grip, the culture and the people’s food is often dismissed as “un-Chinese.” But enough of politics — their food is amazing. It’s sort of a wonderful mixture of Middle Eastern, Indian and Chinese food.
The food has a heavy mixture of spices and often is a touch spicy. Many dishes are stews with a sweet tomato sauce base and lots of yummy veggies. Their staples are thick, handmade noodles and fried, seasoned naan, which are both absolutely wonderful. Jeff’s favorite Xinjiang food is meat skewers, which is one of a handful of characters he knows. On Saturday we also discovered that though the most common meat is lamb, I’ve been incorrectly translating it as “goat” for months now. Jeff was a little miffed about that one, but I maintain that it’s not my fault, since it’s all the same character in Chinese, and my brained sort of merged the two animals into one as a result.
Having eaten our fill, we went and got hair cuts. Neither cut was ideal, but we had a great time at the salon. Jeff started screaming for me several times to come over and translate, and all the stylists thought we were hilarious. Jeff looks a lot more Chinese now. My hair cut was just a trim, but I’m not satisfied with the blockiness of my layers. I’m sure everyone cares about that.
Anyway, it was pretty much the best day I’ve had in a while. I think it mostly had to do with Jeff being really sweet, and the amount of tasty food I had. In other news, Thursday is my real birthday, so he’s still not off the hook for celebrating it.