My dinner solo at Mosselen

I opened up google maps to search for neighborhood restaurants and settled on a Belgian beer restaurant. I thought I’d had no problem getting in though even they recommended making a reservation. As it was just me and the menu being as amazing as it was, I decided to walk the block and a half to face my fate.

As soon as I walked in, I got worried. It was packed and people kept walking in. I caught the eye of the host and after he seated a couple, I told him I hadn’t made a reservation. He asked if it was just me and I responded yes. He said I was in luck, that someone had just canceled. I was seated in the back room at a two-seater for one facing the room of a few occupied tables.

Yes, this was my first solo dining experience outside of the states. I’ve eaten out solo in Vegas but at my comfortable neighborhood spots. Actually, on second thought, I lied, I ate solo in Cameroon during my one-year stint in the Peace Corps.

I started with a refreshing non-alcoholic Stella Artois. I liked it. I like the taste of a Heineken type beer which today I learned is a Pilsner but I don’t like the feeling of ‘getting’ drunk.

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The seafood soup was delicious with bits of mussel, salmon, perch and broccoli in a lemony-garlicky-buttery-creamy goodness of a broth.

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The mussels were large and tender but I didn’t love the creamy garlic broth, a bit too salty but I did indulge by dipping my baguette slices.

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I ended my dinner with a cheesecake of ricotta cheese and strawberry jam and a cup of chamomile tea. I normally don’t like cheesecake but this cake was light with none of heavy cream cheese base that seems to take up residence on my tongue.

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All in all, I had a comfortable meal. No one stared at me and the wait staff were very nice.

Let go, be confident, and have fun

Let go of expectations, be confident & have fun. These are the words I have embodied consistently for the past few months and no more so than my trip to Eastern Europe with my friend Cristina. She makes it easy since she is very funny and charismatic and also very laid-back.

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We spent the day sightseeing on a Big Bus tour as well as on foot. Yes, more achy feet but we got thai massages, me for my feet and Cristina a full body.

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We walked a little more this evening on fashion street and it turns out it was fashion week here in Budapest but it ended today. We didn’t do any shopping but I did buy a chimney cake from a street vendor. You can watch the video on the making of it on FB. I have to say, the visual experience was much more rewarding than the tasting, as it’s just sugared dough.

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I’ll leave you with this:

Who are you when no one is looking?
How often do you show up as that person in your interpersonal relationships?
Why?
What prevents you from being the you you are in front of others?
Who taught you that you had to hide you from the world?
How has hiding your true self benefited you or your relationships?
What would you need from your relationships in order to show up more authentically?
How would it feel to let go of expectations & the need for approval, be confident & have fun?

Eastern Europe, here I come

The last time I flew over the Atlantic, was on Air France and it was freezing. My poor fingers were blue and their blanket was doing nothing for me. I even felt bad for the flight attendants. Well, not tonight. I am bringing my own fleece blanket.

I spent a few hours yesterday saving maps and guides of the 4 countries my friend and I plan to visit; 140 pgs. Rather than tax my home printer, I sent the job to the professionals, Staples. I’m about to go pick up the job and a few last minute items before our flight tonight.

We arrive in Budapest on Thursday to a high of 49 degrees but it will be 8am so it’ll be more like 35 degrees and a 64% chance of rain. Luckily, the the 10-day forecast shows Thursday to be the coldest and wettest day of our trip with the rest of the day’s highs around 56 degrees. If you’re wondering why the weather forecast, it’s 74 degrees in Vegas.

I bought a new jacket which I thought would be too warm, thank goodness I kept it. It’s waterproof and fleece lined.

I’ll be bringing my chromebook to keep up with my daily posts but I couldn’t decide whether to rely just on my smartphone camera or bring my bulky digital camera. I bought it a long long time ago so it’s a little larger than the palm-sized cameras of today. I figure if I bring it, it’ll save my phone battery.

Okay, time to take out the trash for tomorrow and bring my plants over to my neighbors for watering, then a shower, wash my hair, run a few errands and head to the airport.

Talk to you in JFK during my 8 hour layover.