Aside from reuniting with my wonderful family, I knew going back home meant getting to see my wonderful friends again. Although our time back home was incredibly short, my boyfriend and I still got to spend an entire day with our “extended” family. We had all been friends since day one of freshman year, living in the same dorm (with a few exceptions). Some of them have even flown to Korea to visit us, but all of them made time in their busy schedules to meet up with us back home. Now that’s love.
The day began with the boyfriend and I going to West Hollywood to meet up with two of our friends for lunch, one of which was flying in from Nor Cal just to see us. We went to a place called “The Addiction Bistro.” In our group, everyone is a big foodie and I’m afraid it has only gotten worse now that we all have jobs and money. Needless to say this place was absolutely amazing! They specialize mainly in burgers, hotdogs and fries, but the best part is that EVERYTHING on their menu is homemade. You can really taste the difference too. I got a burger called The Carnivore, which came with applewood smoked bacon and aged wisconsin cheddar cheese. The patty was juicy and just fell apart in my mouth. There was a symphony of flavors rolling off my tongue and I could taste them all so clearly. My boyfriend got a huge hotdog which I suppose was really delicious because it was gone before I could even get a picture. We really wanted to try more, but we had a whole day of snacking ahead of us.
Dinner wasn’t going to be until 7, so we needed to find a place to keep us occupied until then. As is our custom, a get together would not be complete without a cup of delicious boba milk tea, so we headed to The Grove. My boyfriend and I had never been there before, so if I had to describe it, I guess I would call it an outdoor shopping kingdom. The architecture was incredibly intricate and grand. There were marble sculptures, water fountains and lovely resting areas. The stone cobbled floors were lined with stores, cafes, restaurants and even a movie theater. To be frank, if I could live there, I don’t think would ever need to leave. As you walk to the end of this grand facade there is a very large farmers market. Inside this labyrinth of tempting aromas, we found “T-Tea Shop.” It was such a pretty little shop with a wide variety of loose teas. I got a caramel milk tea with boba, which was not as sweet as you might think. It really hit the spot. If you’re a tea lover, I really recommend this place.
Fully content with our teas, we met with another friend and decided to go walk around The Grove before our need to try everything we smelled really kicked in. Right outside the farmer’s market I found a really cool place called “Three Dog Bakery.” It was a bakery that specialized in making freshly baked treats for dogs using all natural ingredients. I just knew that I had to pick up something for my baby waiting for me back home. After that, it was nice just walking around and taking in the sights, chatting with my friends and taking lots of pictures. I felt like such a tourist, but it was fun nonetheless.
Finally, it was time to meet the rest of our group for dinner at a Thai place in Hollywood called “Pa Ord Noodle.” This place had come at the recommendation of several different people, so there was really no contest. It’s probably some of the best Thai food I’ve ever had in Cali. To be honest I have no idea what we ordered, since we each picked a soup and handed over the duty of ordering for the group to our Foodie Queen. Everything was exceptional and very filling. Good food and good company has always been the ultimate recipe for happiness for me. Sitting there, it felt like no time had passed. Sure we were all a bit more “grownup,” but we just jumped back into conversation like we had just seen each other yesterday. They are some of the best people I have had the pleasure of befriending and it is truly a gift to have them in my life. It was really hard saying goodbye after such a short visit, but I look forward to seeing them again during my next visit because I know that no matter how much time has passed, we will always make time for each other.