Thursday, August 28, 2008


It seems like every time Sunshine leaves town, I get sick. Sunshine left for Hà Nội on Tuesday afternoon; I woke up that morning with a cold. Certainly it's all in my head, but if it's psychosomatic then it sure comes with a lot of ectoplasm. I'm afraid that's going to be the most synthesized metaphor I can produce the way I feel today. Just like yesterday and the day before, this will be a post entirely composed of loose associations and wobbly logic, assuming I even try for those things at all. Bear with me, Goldilocks. Last night I felt too bad to leave the house, but Tuesday I straggled out for the typical sushi gluttony I reserve for nights when Sunshine is off working. I went to the same place I detailed last week in my "Rule of Four" post.1 Last night I only ordered three things, so everything went marvelously. After a second trip to this place convention dictates that I should know the name; but I plead illness. Look, it's right there on Mạc Đĩnh Chi Street, right beside the most severely Denny's looking Korean fusion diner I've ever seen.2 As of my second meal there, however, I am prepared to pronounce the place more expensive and less homey than my very favorite downtown sushi bar, but equal in price and quality to my second favorite (if maybe with a slightly less extensive menu). And they are working on the homey: yesterday the five waitresses pretty much formed a ring around my table where they could instantly respond to my every perceived whim. Well, just as instantly as possible given the rapid questions they were all asking me about the book I was reading, how long I had been in Vietnam, and the like. [Cavin]

Then, a 2 sided conversation ensued...

To which Blogger Mr. Cavin added:

* Denny's? Well, yeah. It took us a while to figure out why, and it certainly isn't only true of Korean restaurants. The Thai place on our street is very diner-like. So is one of the upscale Italian places in District One's posh Đồng Khởi shopping area. Many places are. It's the uniforms that make it seem this way (though many Asian restaurants also choose to light their dining areas better than romantic ambiance usually dictates--just like a Denny's). In many Vietnamese restaurants, even those serving the cuisine of other cultures, the waitstaff* are clad in homely uniforms along the lines of some dowdy French Provençal throwback.* It's the quaint thing to do in Indochina. Waitresses are frequently dressed in little collared shifts,* sometimes floral print, with turned-up cuffs on the short sleeves, industrially strappy frilly bib aprons, pantyhose, orthopedic shoes, bonnets. Just like at Denny's. An old French Denny's.

Friday, August 29, 2008 12:31:00 AM  
To which Anonymous 'ell joy added:

Great links, MrC. Later, I'm going back to The Trunk Store to just browse. I hope you are also documenting your favorite eating places photographically.

Friday, August 29, 2008 9:57:00 PM  

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