I wasn’t planning on even mentioning this dish. I have no expertise in the realm of authentic Latina cooking and typically leave it up to others that actually know what they’re talking about. I mostly just do the eating. Since, well, that happens to be my expertise.
But it makes no difference because these impromptu tacos and those close to the HungrytoHappy kitchen were at something of a standstill. They were dinner last Tuesday. They were lunch on Wednesday. They were a snack on Thursday. And if that isn’t a good indication of how good they were, let me tell you. They were awesome.
In the last few months, I felt (yet again) suspended in limbo. In so many ways, this year feels like a first. The first year I can’t use being a full-time student as an excuse to eschew finding a steady and stable full-time job. The first year I realize the true effort it takes to keep in touch with even the best of friends, whose lives also happen to be unfolding unexpectedly before them. The first year I see life the way I do now. It feels strange and surreal to remind myself that I am a college graduate, an adult.
Once in a while, I sift through old pictures and catch snapshots of my past, finding myself at a loss for words. I remember those blunt bangs and the plaid uniform I wore at my private school in California. I remember my strawberry-blonde best friend, her freckles an object of my greatest envy. I remember my sun-kissed skin from blackberry-picking with my Guatemalan nanny, Adela. I remember ferry rides to Granville Island and goose-chasing at Stanley Park with my sister in Canada. I could never forget the fluorescent lights of Seoul and the way my heart would beat in the city. I remember my first failed experiments with make-up and fashion, high school crushes and cliques. Flip forward a few pages and I vividly recall my high school graduation, all the flower leis, and my first official cap and gown. Then I remember Seattle and the courtyard of cherry blossoms on campus. It baffles me that now, I’m looking at freshly-printed photos of my friends and I in forest green caps and gowns against azure Hawaiian skies, proudly displaying our post-college diplomas – our tickets into the real world. To think, I’ve journeyed this far.
My apologies for the mini-hiatus that followed the mini-dinner party. Sadly, upon reflection of my posts, I have become aware of how narcissistic blogging can be. Furthermore, I have come to realize that so far, I have only fulfilled half of what I claimed to be this blog’s objective. That being said, enough show-casing of my gradually accumulating culinary repertoire, for now, and onto equally important eating excursions. As I have mentioned in earlier posts and such, Hawaii is comprised of a semi-wide range of cuisines. I say ‘semi’ only because there are often times I find myself eating some version of the same thing, especially since Hawaii is well-known for their ‘plate lunches’ and other such wonderfully simple and filling plates.
However, due to this omnipresent comfort food, anything remotely out of this domain of food is usually considered fairly ‘new’ and ‘hip.’ For example, I have only been to one restaurant in town during my time here that specializes solely in Shabu Shabu. It’s either because there aren’t many restaurants that are popularized by this dish or probably more so because I’m biased and haven’t sought out such restaurants. I realize that Shabu Shabu is all the craze amongst many, but I had quite the unfortunate experience of Shabu Shabu indigestion in Korea when I was younger and have never liked the dish since.