Saturday, July 27, 2013

Round Robin: Gladly Beyond

somewhere I have never traveled, gladly beyond
any experience, your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which I cannot touch because they are too near
--from Somewhere I Have Never Traveled by E. E. Cummings

For this week's Round Robin Photo Challenge: Someplace I've Never Been, I asked to see photos of someplace you've never been, whether it's a new restaurant half a block away or a whole new continent. (That's not exactly what I said, but you get the drift.) My inspiration is this: I've been going on long drives with my Dad, and exploring museums with him, sometimes on the same day. The idea is to try to keep his mind engaged with new experiences, and mine too. So where did I find to go last weekend that I'd never been before?

Well, here. I know it doesn't look like much; it's just an obscure little restaurant called Seoul Kitchen in a strip mall called Crossroads Festival, which sounds more festive than the shopping center deserves. I was looking for someplace different to take Dad, preferably something that would also work for RRPC. I'd seen the name of this Korean restaurant while driving by. Seoul Kitchen! Cute name! But when I initially chose it over Smashburger (what an exciting name for a burger joint!), parked and went up to the door with Dad and his walker, I almost chickened out on going in.  My tastes in food are not very adventurous, and I got pretty nervous when the posted menu items had names like Spicy Squid, Bi Bim Bap and Mandu Guk. Furthermore, I was not at all sure my dad could handle such choices; he barely copes with a menu in a familiar American chain restaurant. But he surprised me, pointing at menu items that had relatively familiar names and ingredients. "I think it's all right," he said, or words to that effect. Thus he very nicely shamed me into trying the place after all.

Having taken the plunge, I looked the menu over and actually went with an entree with a delightfully exotic name: Bi Bim Bap. This was a rice bowl with a little shredded beef, nicely crisp mung bean sprouts and other veggies, and a fried egg on top. I was a little disappointed there wasn't more meat, but that was my fault for choosing Bi Bim Bap over some of the meatier items. Dad had chicken with Yakisoba noodles, which is to say that he ate the chicken and left most of the noodles. That's exactly what he does with all pasta dishes, so I wasn't a bit surprised.

The neat thing about the meal was the extras. We started with miso soup, which was minimalist but nicely low carb. Then with the meal we had individual dishes of marinated veggies as seen above. I liked the cucumbers, and Dad actually liked the kimchi, which turned out to be fermented cabbage. That was a little too spicy for me, but Dad ate most of it. The service was excellent and the prices were right, so overall it was a successful adventure in going "somewhere I have never traveled, gladly beyond."

After lunch we went to the Ft. Lowell Museum at Ft. Lowell Park. I'd certainly been to the park before and photographed the ruins somewhat extensively, but I'd never been inside the actual museum. It turned out to be a total bust in terms of interesting Dad in its people or contents, but I enjoyed photographing a docent who wore period clothing and demonstrated how to load a period rifle.

Another docent was also connected with the Pima Air and Space Museum, which Dad and I had visited the week before. The part of it devoted to World War II is currently closed for expansion and renovation, but that was the area of this docent's particular interest. He was very interested in my Dad's history as a B-17 navigator and Stalag Luft 1 POW, which, by the way, my dad no longer remembers at all. I gave the docent Dad's particulars and my contact info. He promised to do some research and get in touch.

After that we went for a drive, as the monsoon got ready to start monsooning. I went looking for a back way to Mount Lemmon, and found myself on a section of Snyder Road that is definitely "Not a Through Street." Kind of pretty, though!

Eventually we made it by all-too familiar route to Catalina Highway. I took one more detour, onto a road less traveled, by me at least. But I'm not quite certain that I've never traveled it.

After that I couldn't resist driving up Mount Lemmon, a place I go all the time. But it doesn't usually look like it did that day! I brought back lots of pictures from that, some of them quite striking, I hope. But they definitely don't fit the "somewhere I've never been" criterion, so I'll post some of those in a separate entry.

Meanwhile, let's see what new places our other Robins photographed!

Linking List
as of Saturday, July 27th, 2013, 12:52 AM MST

Karen - Posted!
Outpost Mâvarin

Carly - Posted!

Sweet Memories


1 comment:

Carly said...

Hi Karen :)

Like you, I am not terribly adventurous when it comes to food. I shy away from most Asian foods due to my inability to handle curry. Plus, I keep a log of my meals, and how they effect my diabetes, so when I do venture out, I keep it familiar.

Loving the photos of the awesome clouds. You are coming upon a very photogenic time of year in your neck of the woods! I hope you will do more cloud photos, I always enjoy them so much! More please! :)

Carly :)