So it’s been a pretty busy couple of weeks. Two weekends ago was my mom’s birthday and we decided we would take my mom to Descanso Gardens and then out to dinner to a place she had been wanting to go to forever.
The day had the potential of getting rained on but fortunately, it never happened (as is usually the case around here). It was overcast but very pleasant for walking. The gardens were beautiful, the roses and camellias are in full bloom at this time of year, and the place was not really crowded. We casually strolled along in no rush with no real itinerary – whatever mom wanted to do is what we did. She decided to start out by spending about 45 minutes in the teensy little gift shop. I normally would have wanted to move things along, but I resigned myself to go with the flow and it felt good.
That last photo, I printed up and gave to my mom for Mother’s Day, more on that later. The first photo she would kill me for posting, but this is my blog, dammit. 😀
After spending the day walking, we made our way to East LA, to a place called Moles La Tia. My mom saw a report about their moles on Despierta America (which is kinda the Good Morning America for Spanish speakers in the US) and had wanted to go ever since. It is a tiny unassuming little place on Cesar Chavez. Everything that we ordered off their menu, and I do mean everything was absolutely delicious. From the agua fresca and horchata (made from pepitas instead of rice for a smoky rendition of this classic drink) to their Botana mestiza and over two dozen moles. I ordered fresh scallops toped with a fruity mole. It was something new and I really liked it. But I also liked my dad’s “Enmoladas Tricolor” which are similar to enchiladas, but instead of chile they are covered in mole, three kinds, in this case: pipian rojo, verde, y blanco. Guh, so much food, so little room. Our eyes were certainly bigger than our stomachs, if you can believe that, and we practically rolled outta there, not able to finish all the food. If you like moles at all, you have to give this place a try, you will not regret it. And if you like moles and ever visit me from out of town, let me know and we will make this a stop! [Bday set on Flickr]
Thus ended the birthday part of Saturday, May the 2nd. This day also happened to be the day that Yair, my long-time friend was visiting from Chicago, and he wanted to meet up at Alegria in Long Beach. We’ve been friends since junior high and I miss the punk, so even though I was exhausted, we met up in Long Beach around 10:00 p.m. Carlos also came down. We hadn’t seen him in a while either because he was in Iraq. Thankfully, he came back to us in one piece, although to be honest, I’m a bit worried about him for other reasons I won’t go into here (nothing too terrible, but I can’t help and be a mother hen).
Anyway, we had a good time out, polished off the night around 4:00 a.m. after an obligatory Denny’s run. It felt really good to spend time with my friends that I hadn’t seen in such a long time (including
). But boy did I pay for it the next week!
Remember how I posted that I was sick and coughing and wanting to die? Well, I haven’t shaken that bug. Spending that much time out, and having to shout to keep conversations going at a happenin’ bar irritated my throat. Couple that with the freezer box that the management converts this building to over the summer, and I had a good relapse last week. I am better, still coughing, but much much better.
Anyway, that weekend was polished off with a visit to the extended in-laws for a memorial service for Manny, Juan’s cousin that passed away last year on my mom’s birthday. We went to a mass and then to a lunch with a ton of familia and it was really nice. There weren’t speeches or anything, it was just a nice time to get everyone together and enjoy each other’s company. It’s really the best we can do with the little time we’re given, right?
Anyway, I thought I was going to catch up with this post, but I will leave the rest for another. Stay tuned (or you’re warned-either way).