culture mash-up

Once again, I have the opportunity on this blog to showcase my favorite features of living in Cayman: Meeting diverse friends from across the globe. And eating good food.

A while back, NS and I tested out Karma's all-you-can-eat sushi offer on a Saturday night.

It's a pretty good deal: $35 gets you bottomless sushi rolls (from a set menu), plus a free drink.

Mind you, we figured out that they try to fill you up on soup and salad before the good stuff comes out, but that didn't stop us from getting our money's worth.

Sushi in general, and all-you-can-eat sushi in particular, makes for a very social meal, and thus we shared the experience with two of N's new coworkers: BT and FY.

These two are relatively new to the island, hailing from China by way of East Coast Canada.

For clarity's sake, when I say East Coast Canada, I mean anything east of the middle of the country. And by the middle, I mean whatever is in between Vancouver and Toronto.

They're from Toronto.  (In my world: East Coast Canada.)

Back to Karma: I've featured Karma on the blog before, and we're pretty big fans of the entire menu (the pad thai bowls are wicked), but it was nice to zone in on one food group and enjoy a full meal of sushi. Aside from the fact that I ingested more than my fair share of white rice, it was delightful.

As was our company. I turn into a full-time laughter machine when the two of them get going. But we'll get to that in a minute.

Recently, the two of them invited us over for dinner on a Sunday night. Bachelors hosting a dinner? This I had to see.

First off, props to BT for cooking a "handmade AND homemade" meal. (It was language such as this in his email invitation that lured me right in.)

Apparently, these two don't have formal dinner guests often, but you'd never know it by their clean apartment, which smelled only of the "handmade AND homemade meat Bolognese sauce". (This exact phrase sealed the deal for me.)

While BT ensured our plates were full of comfort food--so appropriate for the cool winter weather we've been experiencing--FY filled us in on how he comes up with his Twitter feed content.

As per usual, BT was unamused with FY's musings, and focused instead on masterful Italian food preparation.

I think N's favorite part of the evening was eating a pasta dinner on the couch, watching the NFL playoffs, with his feet on the table. The chef in my house is not this gracious.

But my favorite part of the evening was when we somehow got on the topic of my daily highlight journal. 

This was an idea I started last summer, inspired by my wonderful friend LW, who mentioned that she was recording the highlight of her day on daily index cards. Each day had a separate card, and each line on the card provided the space for that year's entry. Over time, the card's lines would get filled by the entries for that date (i.e. January 27th), year by year by year.  Not only would this allow her to reflect on the bright spot in her day on a regular basis, but the review of last year's January 27th highlight would bring another smile or chuckle thinking of the memory.

(Allow me to continue my rabbit trail): I thought this was a fantastic idea, as the concept of daily thankfulness is underrated in today's society. But I wanted to make the daily practice a bit more palatable to my style. Carrying around 365 index cards everywhere I travel? I couldn't see it. Putting it all into a Google Drive spreadsheet that I can access on my phone from anywhere? Yeah, that sounds like me.

And by spreadsheet, I mean the simplest spreadsheet you've ever seen. I'm an accountant, and I do love Excel, but I saw no reason to make this personal collection of daily highlights anything fancy. To prove this to you, this is the template for next month's highlights: 

February 2015's highlights will someday go in Column C.

As you can see, this is as basic as they come.

Too basic, it would seem, for these Asian bachelors. They got a hold of this daily data entry concept and started to design a better, more efficient, automated spreadsheet for my highlights, all in their heads. The two of them started speaking another language (no, not Chinese), during which time I believe they were completely unaware that we were in the room. Of course, this spreadsheet design dilemma only led into further geek-speak, which I was absolutely devouring, as you will be able to tell from my crying/choking/laughter in the background. I mean, mascara was running down my face, people. Fortunately, N had the forethought to whip out the iPhone video camera so that I could share it with all of you.

So here I give you a few snippets of our wonderful evening with the Asian/Canadian/Italian-eating mathematician/banker/trader bachelors.

I hope there are many more similar conversations to come.

By the way, that mind reader comment I made at the end? Stole it.

[ music credit: Take Five by Dave Brubeck ]


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