In the last post about my Australia trip, I mentioned that we returned to Wollongong in the evening and went out for dinner at Samaras. Waking up the next morning after eating a very garlicky dinner, I could still smell garlic hovering in the air.
After several days of living out of a suitcase and hotel-hopping, it was nice to wake up at V and K’s place. Oh wait, I was still living out of a suitcase but at least in the comforts of my friends’ home. Don’t worry, I did a pretty good job of making myself at home while I was there. I think one of the nice things of being back at “home” was not having to eat out all the time. This was definitely one big disadvantage of hotel-living. The ability to prepare food at our leisure and package up leftovers for later should not be undervalued.
K was back at work for the day so V and I just eased into our post-travel day. We started off with a light breakfast of oatmeal and fruit.
Yes, amazingly light compared to the full breakfast diet we had been indulging on while in Melbourne. Feeling rather sluggish after all our travel eating, a simple breakfast of oatmeal and fruit was satisfying. Did I mention that we did an hour of exercise as well? Yup… that’s the best way to work off some of those rich meals AND make space for more food… ;)
After breakfast and exercise, we hung out around the house for a bit before heading out to grab lunch and do some grocery shopping. V offered a couple of suggestions for lunch and I picked Vietnamese pho. V took me to Mylan Restaurant, a place that she used to frequent when she worked in the area. Because we arrived after the lunch rush, there were plenty of tables to choose from. We picked a table off to the side, had a look at the menu and (literally) admired the bowls and plates.
We started off with drinks. I was undecided about getting a separate drink. Usually I order the pho with soup so iced water or hot tea would be adequate for my needs. V ordered a coconut juice and then I thought I might as well get something. I had never tried Vietnamese iced coffee so I gave it a try. Having just finished a week-long latte marathon, what more harm could an iced coffee do to me?
By the time our drinks arrived, we had also decided on lunch. It wasn’t a difficult decision… pho noodle soup with beef fillet. Whenever I think of pho, the image of beef served with noodles and soup automatically appear. I know there are many other exciting things that can be ordered from the menu, but to me, that’s the only type of pho I want.
Compared to the many pho options in Vancouver, Mylan probably didn’t seem out of the ordinary. The meal was served piping hot shortly after we ordered. I wouldn’t expect anything less than fast service simply because there were only three tables (including ours) and the other two tables were already eating their meals. The sprouts and basil were fresh and the meal satisfied any pho craving I might have on this trip. The broth seemed lighter and not as oily as what I usually encounter in Vancouver. Hopefully that is a sign that there is less monosodium glutamate (msg) in the soup stock. However, I wouldn’t be able to tell you if the soup had msg or not because my mind was busy preoccupied with the caffeine in the iced coffee.
I had to pick up the pace a bit with our pho because V reminded me that our parking was almost up. By the time we finished our pho, we were also the last table to leave. Full of pho, we went off to our next activity… shopping!