We're back in Austin now. We've been back for several days now, but things always get hectic when you're home, right?
Wednesday we woke up and decided to check out North Beach. North Beach is north of the downtown area and Chinatown. It's got a prominent red light district (that we had to walk through to get to dinner the night before), but it's also filled with ridiculously delicious Italian food. One of the "don't miss" places I was told to visit was Stella Pastry. It turns out that it's also a coffee shop, so Ramona and I had a latte and got some cookies for Colby. Maybe only one of us had a latte. We walked around and found a kitschy little store that sold random souvenirs Next door was a little specialty food store that featured only products that are made at small businesses. Most of the products originated in San Francisco or the bay area, but I did spot some Zhi Tea on the shelf! The person at the register was clearly bored out of his mind, so we started chatting and I was talked into buying a locally made chocolate bar. He also pointed me to his favorite sandwich shop in the area, so Ramona and i headed that way.
We made our way to Petite Deli and ordered a prosciutto and cheese sandwich for mama and an "Italian hero" for dada. It was, sort of surprisingly, run by an old Korean woman who had a granddaughter who was only a few months older than Ramona. Ramona was again ogled and we exchanged baby stories as she made our sandwiches. Wednesday was also the day that I decided to check out the SPIE meet's career center. I found out that no one under the age of 11 was allowed on the exhibition hall floor (lame), so Colby watched Ramona while he ate his sub. I found a lot of different places that had positions that were perfect for... Colby, but none for me. I was fine with that, though, because i'm not looking for a job yet, but I have a better idea about what I need to work on for next year.
After that, Ramona and I went to the hotel and I ate my sandwich and Ramona had some "explore the room" time. And by that, I mean, she got to be unstrapped from the Ergo and just crawl. I was about to strap her to me and go again, but she was hungry, so I nursed her to sleep, actually, and so we just took an afternoon to hang out because she sort of needed it and i was tired of acting as a pack animal. Colby got back to the hotel room around 5:30 and later that evening, we met up with my cousin Scott and his girlfriend Tony. Scott and Tony live in Sunnyvale, about 45 minutes south and it was nice to see him again, as we keep missing each other when everyone comes home around Christmas. We met up at the Warwick Hotel bar and then moved onto the sushi restarant, Sakana, which was only a few blocks from our hotel.
Sakana was great and we had a bunch of random things that Tony mostly ordered. I really enjoy madai and toro (obviously), and this place had some really wonderful, fresh fist. Ramona even got in on the action and had some chicken skewers (still too young for sushi!). Afterwards, we walked around looking for dessert and ended up in the basement of Macy's and eating truffles from Godiva. It was the first time I met Tony and she was really interesting, grew up mostly in the bay area, and has really pretty hair. (I know, sometimes I surprise myself and remember that I'm a girl.) After that, we turned in and tried to pack up, but Ramona was super angry because her tummy hurt and we tried to just sleep for the night.