Late Nite Talks

When I was a freshman at Stanford, I lived in Donner, an all-frosh dorm in Stern Hall. Donner hadn’t been renovated as part of the Stanford’s Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), so it was dark and a little long in the tooth when compared to other dorms on campus like Kimball or Wilbur. Heck, the rooms didn’t have network connections! Oh, the horror! The horror! Can you imagine going to college without a network connection? After having one in the French House my senior year, I can’t!

Lucie Stern Hall’s cafeteria was open in the evenings, during which time it was called, “Lucie’s Late Nite.” Students could go there to order pizzas, fro-yo’s, and other assorted goodies to bide them through the night. I remember the days when I ordered an entire pizza, brought it back to my dorm room, and gobbled it all in the span of an hour! Okay, I usually gave a slice to my roommate or friend, but the rest was mine, all mine! Other times, I hung out with friends and just chatted about life, school, work, and girls in the dining hall.

In later years, the Teahouse supplanted Lucie’s Late Nite as my primary hangout of choice. As a manager, I had a running tab, to which I added heaps of sui mai’s, potstickers, bao’s, or ramen. Those were the days when, late at night, you said to yourself, “Screw work, I’m hanging out at the Teahouse.” Since I graduated, I haven’t really gone out that much. Lately, however, I have found myself going out more in the evenings just to hang with friends at local hangouts like Lucy’s Teahouse or Pho Hoa on Castro Street in Mountain View.

Leslie at Pho Hoa

On Tuesday night, after a 13 hour marathon at work, I drove over to Leslie French’s place in Mountain View. We walked over to Pho Hoa, a favorite place of Eric and mine. As Leslie watched me eat a Number 44 (which was supposed to be a Number 45), the two of us talked about the recent happenings at work and life outside of work. When I’m not at Palm, I try to avoid talking about work. After all, you have to deal with this stuff for, on average, 10 hours a day… you would hope you can avoid it in the other 14 hours each day, no?

I was happy to hang out with Leslie, as we’ve been playing hang out tag for a number of months now. When I’d call her, she’d be busy, and when she’d call me. I’d be busy. Fortunately on Tuesday night, both of us were free! We talked for over one and a half hours at Pho Hoa. Good thing that the restaurant stays open until 2:00 am! If you’re hungry, it’s late at night, and you’re too lazy to cook something for yourself, Pho Hoa is a good place to go. Try the Iced Milk Coffee… they’re great!

Sophia at Lucy’s

Wednesday night (tonight, as I write this photojournal), I hung out with Sophia Tseng. I hadn’t seen her since we got together for dinner and photos with Eric a few weeks ago in San Mateo.

Sophia arrived at my place around 8:00 pm. We hung around my pad for a little while before driving over to Target to pick up some goodies. I almost always pronounce Target as the French would, Tar-jay! There, I picked up a weight scale, so I can weigh myself and see the pounds of Jabba-like fat burn away, and a fan for those upcoming hot summer nights. Sophia picked up some Fun Fruits before we left to drive back to downtown Mountain View and Lucy’s Teahouse for dinner.

This is the third time that I’ve been to Lucy’s, the first time when I met up with Dardy and the second time last Saturday with Amabelle, Rita, Dardy, and company. Lucy’s is still cool to my eyes, and I continue to enjoy hanging out there. The ambiance, the location, and the food make it my preferred place to hang out these days. Of course, Lucy’s would be nothing without the fourth ingredient, the company! Sophia was great fun to talk to and to take pictures of. She also wielded the black D30 beast herself in taking some nice photographs of me. Leung Ka-Fai came out tonight in full force!

Eric was joking with me this morning about how I was hanging out with all of his friends lately. He’s right, I have been spending time with a number of people from his social group: Amabelle and gang and Sophia. While he’s off in Bora Bora, I’m here in the Bay Area stealing his friends! Muhahaahaa!!!

Over the beef combination plate, pearl milk tea and a peach tea with whole peach slices, Sophia and I discussed a variety of topics, including the coolness of Baldur’s Gate and RPG’s (go Ultima IV and Wasteland!), relationships, camping and solo backpacking. We welcomed back Eric Turner, a recent Ultimate Frisbee recruit, who was found after being missing for nearly 9 days on a solo backpacking trip ’round Yosemite. I thought back to my solo trip to Desolation Wilderness. It’s scary to think what could happen to you if somehow you got injured while alone. The loneliness and fear of dying by yourself in the wild can get to you. At the same time, the independence and freedom you feel while on a solo backpacking trip is intoxicating, and it encourages you to keep on piling up the frequent solo trips.

It’s nice to just hang, to be with people who are happy, fun, and intelligent. I find it refreshing to be going out more and more and enjoying life with friends and new people. For the longest time, I used to wake up, go to work, come back home, eat, go to sleep, and let the cycle begin anew the next day. No longer!

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