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San Francisco getaway

Albert and I are away to celebrate our 19th anniversary (which was last week) and his birthday, which is next week.

So here we are, in San Francisco. Here’s the view when we step outside of where we are staying.

That’s Coit Tower. Though it slightly looks like the leaning Tower of Pisa due to perspective from down below.

Here’s what we see when we walk a little down the block.

Wow! I feel like I’m back in Europe! Except this one’s a lot newer than the ones I saw over there.

Driving to the city was pretty stressful so I took over driving, as city driving doesn’t stress me. But I was greatly appreciative Albert drove all the way from Davis while my head rolled around the car seat headrest as I dozed in and out. Ever since I started going back to work I haven’t been sleeping well again. I need to find a way to get my mind to disengage from work.

Thus far, the only thing that really works is getting away. I didn’t think about work all day!

For dinner, we went to a restaurant called The Slanted Door. It is Vietnamese food, but like gourmet-tasting because it’s soooo good! I read about it on Fast Company magazine and noted it as a place to eat if we ever visited San Francisco.

The place feels very hip. Lots of buzz, an open kitchen, and people squished into the restaurant. The tables are pretty close together but there’s still a feeling of privacy —mostly because we had to talk very loudly and lean our heads together just to hear each other! But I guess that is the in thing for restaurants these days.

There is a large window with a view of the bay. Here’s the view from our table.

We split everything, with Albert eating some of my portion so I could cut down on my carb intake. We started with an appetizer.

First we got spring rolls. We love spring rolls. It came with yummy peanut sauce. The was the only dish that tasted kind of standard, but was still delicious!

Then it was time for scallops, perfectly seared. They were tender inside and had that wonderful seared flavor on the outside — absolutely perfect. On the side was a little salad of mangos, onions, lemon grass and fish sauce. Delicious. I ate the mango because Albert is allergic. Last time he ate a lot of mango, his whole face swelled up.

Then there was this dish called “hodo soy beanery yuda.” When it came out, it looked like this.

Familiar “glass noodles” (that’s what the menu said) and I guess the hodo soy beanery yuda was the thin tofu skin-like stuff that my mom used to make but I can’t remember what it was called. It was soooo good. The best I have ever had.

This dish had a funny name: “grass-fed estancia shaking beef,” which was cubed filet mignon with watercress, onions and lime sauce. I skipped the lime sauce. The beef was so flavorful I wanted to taste it without it getting masked! I cut it into itty bitty pieces so I could savor each piece. It was perfectly cooked, tender and flavorful and so incredibly yummy!

We ordered a banana tapioca dessert, but then they surprised us!

Two desserts!

The extra dessert was totally awesome. It was a chocolate cake with cream and crunchy meringue on top. The meringue was good — I’m not a big meringue lover but these had really good flavor and also a crunchy texture. It was surrounded by “Happy Anniversary” written in chocolate.

The banana tapioca was fascinating. It was quite an odd-looking and sounding dessert: banana tapioca on top, avocado ice cream underneath, and under that lime meringue.

It sounds very strange, but the flavors blended together wonderfully. I even tried the 3 things separately and it was good that way too! Albert commented that it was a very Asiany dessert, but I was surprised at how it was so good.

This definitely has been the best Vietnamese food we have ever had. Other than the spring rolls, which seemed pretty standard, everything else was hit out of the park. I can see why the place was totally hopping!

Afterwards, we came back and watched the movie Sherlock Holmes. Excellent movie, great fun! I used to be a Sherlock Holmes fan and read all the books when I was a kid. The movie was even better! But it wasn’t until the end that I realized that the actor is the same guy who played Iron Man. I was wondering why he looked so familiar. I guess I am a little slow.

The funny thing was that my computer kept ejecting the DVD. After searching Google, we read that sometimes the drive is installed too tightly. So Albert tried turning the computer upside down when inserting the DVD, and it worked! Such a smart husband.

The bummer was during the movie we had to stop twice because a mosquito bit me on the face and then later the neck. Albert went into hunter mode and found it and killed it. My hero!

It’s been a wonderful first day of our vacation away. Maybe I will even sleep tonight.

I am so grateful for such wonderful blessings!

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