Stracciatella gelato, whimsy, words

I think I might have found my standard contribution to family gatherings. You see, my sister brings this spinach dip to every family gathering, and everyone always acts surprised and delighted and showers her with compliments about how <insert superlative here> that spinach dip is! I never knew, until recently, that I wanted a standard contribution too. I make a lot of things that no one else in the family does. I make delicious Thai curries and curry pastes. I make delicious ramen broth. I also make a damn fine cacio e pepe. None of those dishes really go with everything though. You can’t just show up to someone’s house for a dinner gathering with a big pot of curry and a rice cooker. I guess you could, but no one would act surprised and delighted when you do.

Anyhow, we were getting together for mother’s day yesterday, and earlier in the week my sister mentioned that mom wanted me to bring some lemon gelato (because mom was over at the house the first time I made it and was surprised and delighted!). It was like a light bulb going off. OMG I can take gelato to nearly any family event! GELATO IS MY SPINACH DIP! People will be genuinely surprised by my genius flavor combinations! So I made a stracciatella gelato. I used a vanilla bean instead of extract. I made my own chocolate syrup to drip into the churning vat of delicious. I managed to drip the chocolate in so gingerly as to create chocolate chips, not chocolate ice cream. I carefully packed it, made a cute label, and showed up quite proud and excited, and everyone was surprised and delighted! Why? BECAUSE MY SISTER BROUGHT A LEMON ICE CREAM PIE.

I genuinely found this hilarious. I do intend to dominate the ice cream and gelato arena at family gatherings from here forward. No, I don’t really see it as a competition. I do somewhat feel like I’m at the point in my life where I should carve out a niche for such events that involves more than taking a seat in front of the chips and dips and watching everyone while avoiding conversation. Gelato is a start.

Happy wife, happy life. 😍😍😍😍😍

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On an unrelated note, since I’m ranting away today. Mrs. Primate just started a new work schedule for the summer. You see, I work 11:30 – 8, and previously she worked 10-7. She has to get up earlier, which means I have to get up earlier if I want to fulfill my morning duties of delivering a breakfast and beverage to her vanity as she gets ready for work. This is a slight modification of waking up slowly together in the kitchen while I sip coffee and deliver her breakfast to the table while we watch YouTube videos. Then she leaves at 7:30 and I have another 3 and a half hours before I have to be at work.

I’m not good at change. I feel a little lost this morning without my breakfast buddy. I don’t know whether to try and get in an hour or two of Grand Theft Auto, or to go grocery shopping. I could also stand to go for a run, but that doesn’t sound like much fun either. Basically, I’ve been sitting here for 30 minutes trying to figure out what to do with my life…for the next three hours ;). Times where I don’t have an established pattern drive me nuts. I rely on structure to help me figure out my timing. I’m probably the only person on the planet that could wake up an hour earlier and show up to work late because I just couldn’t figure out when I needed to leave! Whine whine whine, piss piss piss, moan moan moan.

I think I’ll go grocery shopping, that’s always fun in the morning.

Why saying a place is “too touristy” is just silly.

Phuket? I heard that’s TOO TOURISTY! (Shut the hell up.)

Being an ESL Korea in teacher means you have one conversation about a thousand times before you go on your vacation. That conversation goes somewhat like this:

Hey! Where are you going for vacation?
We’re going to AMAZINGSOUTHEASTASIANDESTINATIONOPOLIS. How about you?
Really? We were thinking about going there, but it’s too touristy.

That conversation bugs me for a couple of reasons.

  1. It’s pretty douche-y to deride someone’s choice of vacation spots. We’re all different and like different things.
  2. The place you’re going is probably pretty touristy too, it’s not like you’re going to live with some pre-contact tribe in the Amazon or something.

Anyhow, every time we told someone we were going to Phuket we had this conversation. Without fail, we were informed that our destination was “too touristy” for the tastes of the amazing off the beaten path traveler who is completely incapable of traveling without twenty of their best friends that they’ve only known for a few months.

So yeah, I think it’s pretty silly to say that a place is too touristy. What kind of lame-ass hipster calls a developing nation too touristy, anyway?

Shrine of the Serene Light – “I’ve never heard of it, but it’s in Phuket so it must be TOO TOURISTY!”

Reasons it’s just silly to say a place is “too touristy.”

  1. Tourists don’t frequent crap destinations. There’s a reason tourists flock to Phuket, or Bali, or Waikiki and not to the favelas in Sao Paolo. If you don’t like crapping on a toilet equipped with running water more power to you. If you would like to voluntarily contract malaria or Japanese encephalitis go for it, but don’t talk down your nose to me because my destination is too touristy.
  2. Not everyone is trying to travel like a total cheap-ass. It’s cool to be a budget traveler. We travel on a pretty small budget, I think. We don’t take pride in the idea of saving $4 a night and trading the comfort of a private room with air conditioning for the comfort of a smelly room with 12 other people who shower less often than we do.
  3. Touristy areas have some cool sites that aren’t as frequented. We didn’t see all that many other tourists in Phuket Town. We were the only people in the Shrine of the Serene Light. Kata beach wasn’t too crowded. Railay was gorgeous and laid back. We didn’t feel like cattle being shoved off to slaughter in any of these places.
  4. I’d rather need to seek medical attention in a place that’s too touristy than a place that has no medical services.
  5. In all of my fantasy vacation dreams, I dream of staying in the places you see in pictures and magazines and on TV shows. I don’t dream of fighting off motion sickness in the back of a goat-pulled buggy with a bunch of locals wondering, Just what the hell is this guy doing here? , but rather enjoying myself somewhere I’ve always wanted to go.
I think we’ve all got our preferences when it comes to choosing a place to go on our valuable time off. It costs a lot of money to get around this planet. Choosing a destination is based completely on personal preference. If you want to choose a place where you can stay for $1.50 a night and eat nothing but offal whilst seeing the beautiful sewage rivers and commercial agriculture of a developing nation, more power to you, but I’d rather go somewhere that other people might also enjoy, and that more than likely means somewhere touristy.