and a bacon with pure maple syrup for the hubby.
The waffles are made with proofed balls of dough inserted into one quarter of a traditional waffle maker for a few minutes to make it all toasty and flavorful. While delicious, it was much too sweet as a (liege) waffle for me, and much too dense. At least it was filling, and we got to sample our first liege waffle!
Already starting the day on a full belly, we drove to White Center, WA to visit family friends of the hubby's from Shreveport, LA. They own a grocery store and several other small business operations, and it was great to see how well they were doing! We observed the relationship they had with their customer, and it made the hubby and I feel like jumping into the swing of things. It reminded us of our relationship with our customers back home. Jamie, the youngest son, hollered at one of their frequent woman shoppers (age: mid-40's?) that he loved her new haircut and that it was sexy! Yow! Talk about an awesome relationship, no? It cracked us up!
The father showed us around the complex he owns, discussed a few business things, and reminisced about the old days back in Shreveport with the hubby while we waited for their eldest son, Billy, to take us to lunch.
Once Billy arrived, we hoped into his car and took off to Tukwila for (in Billy's terms) some fly Thai food at Mali Thai. We gave Billy the honor of ordering since he knew the menu well and what were some of the most have's. Unfortunately, that was a bad idea because he ordered us a 7 course meal. For lunch. For 3 people. So much for taking it easy on the food front, eh?
We had Angel Wings, Crab Delight, Tom Yum soup, Papaya Salad, Thai Teas, and Pad See Iew just to name a few!
By the time the 3rd item arrived at our table, we were already full. Aicarumba!! Somehow, we managed to sample all 7 items, but packed a togo fit for a king (and all his village too)! Once we got back to the grocery store, I handed the hubby the togo bag of food so that I could crawl out of the back seat of Billy's CLK550 AMG.
Y'all, I'm not sure what happened, but the next thing i know, I fell flat on my face between the curb of the sidewalk and the car. My purse caught my hand on the curb, which in turn saved my face because my chin ended up grazing the pavement, but my left knee hit the curb pretty hard. Shaken up, I excused myself to the bathroom to assess the damage. Yup, busted the crap out of my left knee (thank goodness I keep bandaids in my purse), and scuffed up my chin and palms of both hands. Didn't break enough skin to bleed on the exterior but little pin needle points of blood could be seen. Lovely, just lovely! I was more embarrassed than anything really. Tripping is bad enough, but to face plant and bust yourself up from head to toe. In front of your hubby's childhood friends. OMG! I could die. I was still shaken so no pictures to document the damage.
We hung around the store for a bit longer before parting ways and headed off to another grocery store that our friends said we had to check out, Uwajimaya.
The Japanese grocery store was HUGE with tons to offer including sushi grade filets, fresh fish, and they even pack and ship anything you want to wherever you want! They also have tons of already made food for you to take with you or to eat in their food court, which in itself had a large variety of vendors. It was here we saw an Executive Chef purchase ramen noodle (read about it here)!
We didn't purchase anything, but browsing and taking in the magnitude of the store was eye opening enough.
Limping around (and in some pain), we decided to relax for the rest of the afternoon back at the hotel prior to dinner. Upon our return to our room, we realized the room wasn't made up yet. Um, I know we are checking out in the morning, but shouldn't we still get house keeping? Confused, we called house keeping and they said we had the "Do Not Disturb" placard hanging, therefore, they didn't clean. Just between you and I, we didn't hang the placard out. They said they'd come up and clean so the hubby and I went downstairs to wait in the lobby. We inquired of places to eat and places to check out the fireworks tonight in celebration of concluding 2011 and ringing in 2012. 15 minutes later, we returned to our room only discover, it still wasn't made up! What the crap?! Back downstairs we went. This time, I checked us in on our flights and printed our boarding pass, and made dinner reservations at Mashiko for 9pm!
Extremely late dinner time for us, we decided to grab a quick snack to tie us over till dinner time. On the menu, Pike Place Chowder. Round two! While we weren't particularly hungry (hello, 7-course lunch!), we mentioned we wanted to have the chowder one last time prior to our departure from Seattle. If not now, then we'd never get the chance.
When we returned to our room this time, it was clean and we were provided fresh towels. Yay! Exhausted,
a nap was much needed. Unfortunately, it was a bad idea because when the hubby woke me up to head out for our dinner reservation, my knee was stiff solid. I couldn't bend it nor walk on it without limping and wincing in pain. Oh man... What a way to end our vacation! Not even 2 days at Whistler did this much damage on me!
Determined not to let it bother me, I wobbled out and took off to dinner. Finding parking was slightly difficult and we ended up parking about half a mile down from the restaurant. With our 9pm reservation now chiming at 9:05pm, we walked up to the restaurant just as they were calling our names. Phew! Just in time. I mean, we were here the whole time! =D
Mashiko is known for serving sustainable food and utensils.
We were sat right behind the bar, which means if you're watching Mashiko's live cam on their website, you could see us! We texted our friend, Van, to get online as I waved feverishly at the camera. She saw us. Sweet! Since it was New Year's Eve, we decided on the Chef's Choice Course Menu.
First up was the chuka (seaweed) salad - sweet and tangy
Followed by poached oysters on a bed of cucumbers
Assorted sashimi and two rolls
Bento box with assorted tempura, noodles, fish with bok choy, and meatballs
And for dessert, ginger ice cream with red beans
Despite the small portions, the hubby and I noticed how stuffed we were! Guess the pacing of the meal allowed us to fully enjoy each course!
At the conclusion of dinner, we drove back to our hotel and walked over to a restuarant the hotel concierge mentioned was a killer spot to catch the fireworks off of the Space Needle. We needn't go in, just stand in front. After walking a few blocks and locating the restaurant, we realized the hotel concierge was totally wrong. All we saw were tall buildings with no space needle in sight! Frustrated, we took started walking in the direction of the space needle in hopes of catching an opening that enabled us a small view of the fireworks. Time was a ticking though!
We found ourselves at the steps of the Seattle Courthouse which provided a killer open view of the space needle. Another bonus, very few people were at this location so it was quiet and romantic! As we situated ourselves on one of the stomps in front of the courthouse, the countdown to ringing 2012 began. 10...9...8...7...6...5...4...3...2...1... HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
The hubby and I welcomed 2012 with a quick kiss and an adoring exchange of I Love You. We enjoyed the firework show till the grand finale before heading back, and officially closing the book on our 2011 Annual Christmas Vacation. Surprisingly, the walk back was calm with very few drunkards hooting and hollering disturbing the peace. Guess we really lucked out in finding our odd, but quaint firework spot!
2011 was a rough year for us (in regards to work), but we are totally looking forward to 2012. It's promising new adventures and some major changes in our life!
*It wasn't until the end of February 2012 that the bruise on my knee finally started disappearing. Slowly, but surely. Sigh...