The adventure started last week at Alastair's end-of-work celebration, where I was talking to my friend Kosal and her husband Rob about a specialty Vietnamese noodle dish called pho. They told Al, Shona and myself that they were going to take us to the best pho place in Adelaide the following week, and we would fall in love with it. We agreed to go and finalized the plans by the end of the week.
There was only one issue. Everybody else knew the name of the suburb we were going to, and they told me several times that I was probably going to get stabbed. They weren't serious, but I also picked up on the fact that we weren't going to a very safe place. Alastair went there several times to take his CPA exams, for example. He decided to walk to the local mall one particular time to pick up lunch, and realize after walking in there that he would rather starve than take another step inside.
So, as planned yesterday morning, we drove to Kosal and Rob's house and then followed them to the restaurant. I contemplated leaving my engagement ring at home (I didn't), and I even changed my purse to a less-flashy one to draw attention away.
When we finally pulled up to the restaurant, I almost doubled over with laugher. This is what they call their "ghetto"? It looked like a plain ol' suburb. There were even brand new shiny two-story houses sprouting up all over the place. I've driven through Englewood, one of the scariest neighborhoods on the south side of Chicago, and I was physically shaking with fear. This was nothing! Where were the high-rise projects? Where were the broken windows?
In defense of what everybody says, though, I would never go there by myself or walk around at night there. I understand that there are lower-income families that live there, and there is crime. However, people in Australia get paid much better than they do in America, and that has an impact on decreasing poverty and keeping the cities safer. As I said before, it's all relative. This may be one of the poorest areas in Adelaide, but it's not nearly as frightening as anything I've seen in my city.
With that said, let's get to what we had for lunch!
Al and I got our usual low carb beers (low carb=light beers in America), and Shona got wine. She took a picture, but it didn't photograph well.
We got garlic bread to share.
I just wanted to let all of you know that Al and I went on a bike ride this morning, and it was gorgeous. We rode along the river, but we went the opposite way towards the Hills. In the past, we always went to the beach. We didn't make it very far out, though. We stopped before we got too tired.
As we were riding along, I saw what might possibly be the coolest thing I've ever seen in my life. We were riding past some very thick concrete tracks, and I just thought that they were odd-looking train tracks. I knew that the "train" line in that area is called the O'Bahn, but I didn't actually know what it was. I thought it was just a normal train that went into the north-east suburbs.
Actually, it's not a train that goes along this track, but a bus! It's regular old buses that drive on the road, but they can also drive onto the tracks and go up to 100km/hr! It's 50-60 on normal roads, for a reference. Although Al didn't think it was interesting, I was amused out of my mind. I giggled every time a bus came by. Sorry, but it's just not something that you expect. It's like a bus on a roller coaster. Check it out (and see a picture) here.
We'll go on a longer ride next week, and I'll take pictures of this genius transportation system. I'm still shocked that I never knew this thing existed! I kind of wish I worked in the northeast suburbs now...
Okay, not really. But maybe I will go on the O'Bahn some day.
I'm having a very bad case of the Sunday Blues, guys. I wish this weekend could last longer!
By the way, if you have an iPhone, delete your alarms and redo them! A lot of them aren't working after daylight savings! My phone went crazy after we switched our clocks forward, so it's a real warning.