On Sunday, my Mother celebrated her upcoming 60th Birthday with a family outing to a Cantoneese restraunt in Boston called the Zhu Guang. On a Sunday it does a buffet which is ideal for families as it enables any childrento simply try various different dishes until they find one they like. As I rule I normally steer clear of buffet restraunts but this particular chain (the Zhu Guang started in Boston as the most exquisite take away before branching out) has such a good reputation that I am happy to visit it and will even eat their rice without paranoia. They did not disappoint on this occasion either. They had decorated all around the table with ‘Happy 60th Birthday’ balloons and banners and even presented my Mother with a bunch of flowers. It was a joint celebration as Sunday was one of my sister’s actual birthday as well as being a premature celebration of the big 6-0 for my Mother. Anyway, back on track.
I had convinced my Mother that Iwouldn’t be able to make it back for her birthday meal as I had a band audition that weekend but really, I was going. My eldest sister and I had plotted that I could stay on her sofa the night before and then just be sat at the restraunt when Mum arrived for extra ‘Surprise!’ spice. I duly arrived at my sisters and enjoyed catching up for a few hours before the sofa beckoned.
On Sunday I took my nephew and brother in law to the restraunt with me as elder sister was collecting Mum from her house. We arrived much earlier than anyone else but luckily the restraunt has a rather large selection of fish in an indoor pond that kept my nephew entertained. There was one particularly huge fish which i believe to be a coy carp. My nephew was most disgusted when the coy carp began to eat the tiled wall of the pond. He exclaimed
“Look! He’s eating the wall! That’s disgusting”
My retort was “Well maybe the walls are tasty if you’re a fish.”
To my horror just then my nephew leant down and licked the tiles on the outside of the pond and said “I don’t think the tiles are tasty”. If only I could enjoy the mental state of a four year old again. The world must seem so much nicer.
Eventually my Mum arrived and my presence in the ‘waiting to be seated’ area had the desired effect. She was indeed very surprised and delighted I had managed to make it. The drive was worth it. My sisters and their respective broods arrived shortly afterwards and we got settled down. The food made the trip even more worth it. It really was lovely. I am always particularly fond of the soup at Chinese/Cantonese restaurant so took up far too much space with a large serving of chicken and sweetcorn soup. It was so delicious. I was only a little disappointed that there was no hot and sour soup on offer but all was forgiven when I saw the sheer array of food on the buffet for me to try. I duly tried an awful lot of food but I did chicken out when it came to the muscles on offer as they looked a little to slimy even for me.
One of my nieces was less partial to trying anything and satisfied herself with some chips and prawn crackers. When asked what drink she would like, my sister (her Mum) suggested water would be a good idea to which my niece showed a look of disdain and asked,
“Is it Chinese water?”
Needless to say we all laughed. Here is a shot of the Birthday girls blowing out the candles on their cake
Trips home are made all worth while when you get to experience a glimpse into the complex life of four to seven year old children and, if only for a short time, really appreciate the finer points of life as a result.