Hello again,

Just in case anyone was wondering, you can not replace shrimp with prawn in a typical recipe. I was pretty excited about this online recipe I found with lemon and cilantro. I’m sure its delicious if you have shrimp available to you but unfortunately they only had prawn at the fish shop. Ahhh the pitfalls of the culinary world. For the most part I have gotten a nod and a “It’s ok” with my attempts with the recipes. I need some more time before anyone marks me as the next Emeril but I have been lucky on a few dishes that JD really liked. Tonight was not one of those occasions. He finished his plate, bless his heart, where as I on the other hand threw in the towel and polished off a few rows of rice crackers smeared with Laughing Cow cheese…

Saturday we decided to do some exploring and meandered over to a part of town called Paddington. I was feeling like my thighs were going to fall off any second from the Capiero class on Thursday but continued put one foot in front of the other. Every Saturday is The Paddington Markets that they started in 1973, come rain or shine. We were expecting more of a flea market but it’s very upscale as it turns out. There are lots of designers who are trying to make a name for themselves and people with a new gadget that they are trying to launch.  Most of it was pretty expensive but there was this one sundress that I can’t get out of my head so we will have to go back! All the items had a laid back feel to them and everything I saw inspired my imagination. On the way home, we were feeling hungry, so JD mentioned stopping and getting a kabob. I loved them in England and I love them here so it came down to choosing between the two place across from one another. One was “The 5 star Kabob” and the other was “The Best Kabob”. We ended up going to “The Best Kabob” and an elder gentleman who looked to be the owner helped us. As I was looking at the menu hanging above us, I had a change of heart. There was a dish called a “gozleme” that is a Turkish version of quesadilla. I chose the one with feta cheese and spinach and he slapped it into a grill press. A little while later it came out, he cut it into 1″ by 4″ sticks and gave it to me. It was delicious and very easy to make! I will have to experiment with this at home…

We were supposed to meet up with a group of people for dinner that night but my legs had enough so I cancelled the plans and went straight home and crashed. Sunday I was supposed to meet with the lady who brought us Joe for a romp in the dog park and some obedience work. To my surprise she cancelled on me, having twisted her knee the day before. Although I was sorry to hear that had happened, I secretly rejoiced in another day of rest. Neither JD or I felt like cooking that night so we ventured out to try some of the local fare that had yet to be experienced. We had the word “pizza” in the back of our heads and since I didn’t want to walk anymore than I had to, we stopped at the first place we came to. The name of the establishment is Little Sicily and they have wood fired pizzas. It’s not very big only having 8 or so tables that are squeezed along the side of the counter. Up front is the oven that looks like a cement and brick igloo. I expected great waves of heat to be emanated out from it but it wasnt bad. Just a tad warm, but since we had the Joe with us, we sat outside at a table on the sidewalk. I chose the Italian pizza that comes with the toppings of salami, cabanossi, mushroom, olives and onion. I’m as serious as a disovered Narc at a biker rally, when I tell you that this is the best pizza that I have ever had. Ever. The crust was thin and gave just the right kind of chewiness while giving support to the ingredients. I had never experienced cabanossi before but I think it should be added to just about everything. Even the olives were not just your run of the mill black olives you find on most pizzas. They were those delicious kalamata olives that I can sit down and eat a whole jar if I’m not careful. Needless to say, there were no leftovers.

Yesterday was January 26th, Australia Day (see pictures). Similar to our 4th of July, everyone was off work and out of the house in red, white, and blue. The streets were covered in people every where you looked. There were bands of every genre playing in various portions of the streets. There was The Megaphone Project where several red megaphones of varying sizes and shapes were placed on the street so people could sign into them and take pictures. It looked like a good way to pick up the saliva of several thousand Aussies so I chose to take pictures of them and not me singing into them. We stopped and had lunch at Rockin Burger where I am happy to announce I, Jennifer Whitaker, have tried kangaroo. The burger was called “The Kanga” and was topped with some sort aboriginal salsa and bacon. De-freakin-lish people! You can tell it’s not cow and there was a lot of garlic powder mixed in but darn it was good! It’s not a flavor that I can compare to anything. Not cow, not chicken, not even deer. It’s just one of those things you have to try for yourself.

They had more stalls filled with more trinkets and clothes like in Paddington and I was hoping I would see the dress that I wanted. She wasn’t there so I am still planning on Saturday being reunited with the sundress of my dreams. We wandered around and came across a guy who was performing his ability to be able to spring over several people and not hit the kid who was in the close vacinity. Does he make it? Click here to find out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p7bIwHKMrb8  After witnessing this incredible act (cough) we come across a bunch of guys painted in school or soccer colors and posing with the ladies. They seemed to be trying to raise more money for either boose or a cab ride. It wasn’t really clear at that point in the game and they seemed to be having a lot of fun with themselves. We then finally made it back to the train to get to the IMAX theater. We had tickets to see Avatar which I had been greatly anticipating. They had been sold out for awhile and these were the first good seats available that I could get. I really really enjoyed the movie and thought it had a great message that makes you think about the native americans and being in harmony with the land you live on. The 3D effects were great and the movie was well done. The plot was uber predictable but I loved the characters so much I didn’t care. I had read reports online that people are wishing to commit suicide since they can’t be in that made up world. I had chalked this up to the usual group of people who are nuttier than squirrel terds but now I wonder if this was blown out of context. I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone, so for those who are still waiting to see it, please skip down to the next paragraph. In the movie the main character wants to live in this alien world now that he has become one of them but since his physical body is in a parallel universe, he has to die and come thru to this other world. I think thats what they were talking about was mimicking the movie, not that this makes it any less nutty.

AND NOW ON TO OTHER STUFF – We emerged from the theater into a throng of thousands and thousands of drunk people. I’m not a big fan of being sandwiched in with 50,000 other people, but them being drunk gave it another demension. I just wanted out and the various people in front of me would stop all traffic to talk about the band that was playing or how cute was their outfit. I was less than amused. It took us a long time but we finally made it thru a break, up a flight of stairs, and down several streets before we found our way back to the train station. I was very relived to get home.

Thats all for now. I will try to come up with some new adventures for you soon.

Stay classy America!