A Californian Spring Wedding (29 April – 3 May)

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“Bed time” on my JetBlue flight.

Friday, 29 April

Today, I’m stepped out of my comfort zone of Boston to return to Southern California for the weekend for the first wedding I will be attending as an adult! Of course I flew to California, as taking a bus would be slightly ridiculous. The sad part is: I flew past dinner(time). Thankfully, I had arrived at airport with my tummy full of food after a large brunch. Then, my plot to overcome the difficulty of dinner on a plane — without spending money and eating airplane food — resided in my backpack until the plan was to be revealed!

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My successful bowl of ramen with a napkin included!

So, shortly after my return from SoCal over the winter break, I was reading on meals to pack for plane rides — don’t ask me what article, I don’t remember. Most of them were fairly basic: sandwiches, salads, granola bars, trail mix, etc. However, one suggestion caught my eye: ramen. Logically thinking about this, it made sense as it’s a dry food and they always have hot water for tea on an airplane. Thus, this time around, I figured I’d try it and bought a ramen bowl for my flight — not a Cup Noodle one as the Styrofoam is rather flimsy. Turns out, you really can have ramen on the plane! I had just opened the  bowl, taken out the seasoning packets and asked the flight attendant to fill the water up to the line — and brought my pair of plastic chopsticks, or a fork if you prefer, as to get through security safely — and all was hunky dory for my airplane “dinner.”

After dinner, I — along with everyone else on the plane — was offered “Shut Eye Service.” I didn’t know such a thing existed! Apparently, on JetBlue flights, if you’re flying during a time period people typically go to sleep, they offer this service to all passengers. It involves an attendant going up (or down) the aisle asking if people want a hot towel. What for? I have no idea yet, my guess is something to help relax and get some sleep in prior to landing as they shut down all the lights on the plane.

Successful flight unlocked!

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The groom throwing the garter to all the single “men.”


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A view of the gorgeous reception hall!

Saturday, 30 April

So, I’m in Southern California for a wedding and I’m staying at a friend’s place I haven’t talked to in a very long time. As it turns out, I woke up this morning to prepare for my other friend’s wedding and my host-friend invites me to her own wedding in August! Strange, but sure!

Upon arriving at the wedding I had been invited to, we watched a beautiful service in an asymmetrical church — which sort of drove me crazy — full of multiple symbolisms representing the union of these two individuals. My friend was dolled up beyond recognition, especially as I had never really seen her face caked with make-up. However, everything went beautifully for the actual ceremony.

Afterwards, my beau and I arrived a bit early at the reception hall a little ways down the road only to find that the mother and family of the bride were frantically running around trying to get everything set up. Thus, I stepped in to help what little I could; it was great fun. Once the guests poured in, the real wedding fun began.

The bride and groom participated in a number of games and activities as per usual wedding traditions — or so I’ve been told. Some of them were quite fun like The Shoe Game. Others of them were more typical, like the groom throwing the wedding garter after taking it off the bride. Then, there were traditional activities like the “money dance,” which extended from the groom’s Mexican heritage. It was all-in-all quite fun, though I wish I knew more people as it got quite lonely just knowing my beau and a fellow swing dancer.

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A panoramic of the plaza I used to regular for a specialty dish at Phở Vinam.


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Dresses at the David’s Bridal my friend and I went to.

Sunday & Monday, 1-2 May

The next two days after the wedding was a series of adventures. The day immediately following the wedding, my host-friend invited me to go to a David’s Bridal with her to look at some wedding dresses she had been eyeing that were on offer/sale. We went to the store for her appointment with a wishlist she had created on their website ahead of time. We were in and out in less than an hour; that’s some dedicated wedding dress shopping! Afterwards, we had some fun browsing a local Goodwill store where I found a cute dress she suggested I wear to her wedding.

Following a day of shopping with a bride-to-be, my beau took me on a journey into my past. We drove an hour or two out east into the desert to visit a restaurant where I had once ate regularly with a previous beau. For years my current beau had been trying to figure out what my favourite Vietnamese dish was and why we have a hard time finding it elsewhere. As it turns out, the Vietnamese place I used to regular calls said dish “phở áp chảo,” which could translate to “sauteed” or “pan fried” pho noodles. The problem with it is: I don’t particularly like it done with the standard skinny pho noodles, but with the nice, thick rice noodles. In addition to this complication, many restaurants do not make it crispy on the bottom, but just stir fry it like the way Asian restaurants typically make stir fry noodles and/or chow mein. Alas, it was still worth the drive an hour or two out so I can have it again.

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