Engagement gift

The other day I got a package in the mail. The timing was such that it could have been a birthday gift or a wedding gift. The return address was from a friend of The Little Red Haired Girl’s mom, so we guessed that it was a wedding gift. Although it was confusingly addressed to me.

She opened the box, and discovered a card inside that said it was an engagement gift for me. So I opened the gift inside, and found a framed photograph of The Little Red Haired Girl at age 6 in the bath. Weird but hilarious. Not sure where we’ll hang it. In the bathroom? What’s appropriate?

Ouyang House

Yes, there is dim sum in Nashville! After I read about Ouyang House on the Scene’s Bites Blog last week, I immediately made plans to go. We got there at around 11:30 this morning, and saw right away the rows and rows of buffet. When they were ready to seat us I asked if there was dim sum, and the led us off to a room to the left where just two tables were occupied. Our server came over and immediately addressed me in Mandarin (the other two I was with are white), asking what kind of tea we wanted and saying that she’d bring a menu.

It was kind of hilarious, since I haven’t been mistaken for a Chinese-speaker for a long time. I can actually sort of hold my own in basic conversation, but my vocabulary recall gets worse and worse and my accent has become embarrassing. For the rest of the meal I sort of bumbled along, trying to stick to Chinese when I could and switching to English when I had to.

The menu was clearly the special Chinese-people-menu, and had some dishes listed only in Chinese on one side and the familiar dim sum items on the other. That side had English translations, but soon our server rolled a cart over with a bunch of different things on it and I just picked from there. I’m happy to report that they had just about everything that we generally expect from dim sum (although we didn’t see the head-on shrimp that The Little Red Haired Girl loves), and it was all quite delicious.

I wasn’t responsible enough to take pictures of any food, but imagine steamed pork buns, shaomai, short ribs, bean curd skin roll, eggplant stuffed with shrimp, fried sweet rice and pork dumpling, taro dumplings, and a couple other things I can’t remember. Probably because of the small number of occupied tables there wasn’t that much variety in the cart, but we could have ordered what we wanted from the menu.

The service was really nice; our server brought over the taro dumplings as soon as they came out of the fryer to see if we wanted them. She kept recommending things on the menu to me too, but I could only partially follow the things she was pointing out. We did order one bigger dish that was a wide rice noodle and shrimp thing, which was fantastic.

So, it’s not quite the cavernous banquet halls of restaurants in New York with a cart rolling by every few minutes with new piping hot items. But it’s a great start. We’ll go back, probably soon, just to support their endeavor. We think you should go too. I think you can always order the dim sum items, but it’s weekends when they have the cart(s).