Wednesday, June 13, 2012

SF: e.g. Conference Day 2

April 13, 2012


Grits, a Southern US dish made of coarsely ground corn, was new to us and Yi didn't like it because it was so bland but I liked it because it balanced the saltiness in the accompanying dishes.

During the breaks, we had small bites such as seafood ceviche on endive cups, prosciutto with rock melon, asparagus with goat's cheese (yum!) but I was too shy to stop the waiters for photos. 

The second day of the conference. We were specifically told that the dress code was casual (it being California), which was great because the last thing a conference on innovativeness was prim and proper formality. I wore a dress on the second day because I saw other ladies in dresses despite the cold. I had noticed a particular lady when we were waiting to register yesterday because she was wearing beautiful black heels, a black fur cape and carrying a black Hermes bag. I was at the buffet table on the second day when I heard the waiter say "You are a princess?!" and I looked at her card and it said 'Princess ...K...'. She lives in NYC, she said, and she definitely dressed like a New Yorker.

I enjoyed every presentation except maybe the one where the presenter who overshot his time. Ellsworth Wareham, a cardiac surgeon in his 90s, gave a great talk on how to live long. Roz Savage's presentation left me in tears. She is the first woman to row solo across the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. When I watched the videos of her rowing alone in a small boat in the stormy seas, it just made me wonder how some people can be so brave and resilient. Philip Sheppard, a cellist and professor at The Royal Academy of Music in London, gave an amazing performance and spoke about his task of rescoring the national anthems of 205 countries for the upcoming Olympics. I was proud for Singapore when the architect Moshe Safdie presented on one of his projects, the Marina Bay Sands. During the break later, I overheard a lady say to my daughter how she longed to visit Asian countries and Singapore, especially after Safdie's presentation. I can't tell you how awesome the presenters were; you'd have to be there to experience it.

12-year old pianist, Victoria Young.

Charles Yang on violin, Mike Hawley on piano and Philip Sheppard on the cello.


Three photography studios of different styles were on hand to take photos of the presenters (and non-presenters, after the presenters were done). This one was where futuristic props were used.

Tin plate photography, resulting in beautiful, interesting and antique-looking photos. Wish I had my photo done this way.

Conventional portraits.

Artichokes are not particuarly flavorful or tasty and are quite tough in fact. I equate artichokes' status to bamboo, an equally tasteless and sometimes fibrous veggie, eaten for those very same reasons.



There were always two soups and I love soups especially on cold days.

Told you, the Americans love red velvet cakes.

The conference ended a little bit late and we had about 1/2 hour before we rushed into the bus for a visit to the world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium for a cocktail dinner (beautiful finger food & wine), sponsored by Nokia (we got two Nokia 800 smart phones as lucky surprise gifts!). The museum was closed early to the public for the conference party. What a privilege! I left my camera behind in the hotel but here's a photo of jellyfishes taken with Hub's iPhone.


Walking back to the hotel with a group of new friends on a lovely night. Bliss.


Quick Recipes said...

This look an interesting event :) The photo Chicken is mouth watering :)

Nate @ House of Annie said...

Plain grits is gross but garlic cheddar grits - yummy!

I love the Monterey Bay Aquarium - it's one of the best.

Terri said...


Nate: u r homesick. R u guys returning to the states for a visit or for good?

the lunch guy said...

Nate is right, grits with cheese or garlic or most anything is good. treat it like risotto.

this is the second time you have floored me with a comment.

Artichokes are bland? LOL

i can vividly remember the first time i had them. standing at my mother's knee as i waited forever (45 minutes) for what she termed "a great surprise", and it was. it was jsut the two of us also, the rest of the family were not at home that rainy afternoon in NY.

large plumb ones steamed and served simply with lemon juice and drawn butter. the last bit at the heart is the best. so meaty and flavorful.

try them again.

possibly get some marinated hearts and grill them over charcoal and garnish a pizza or salad with them and some fresh made pimento.

also puree them and swirl it into a potato/leek soup for garnish.

Terri @ A Daily Obsession said...

lunchguy: answered you in my next post. but really, i do buy canned artichokes for my pizzas (love it on the quattro stagioni) and marinated ones for salads. it's the fresh ones i don't seem to handle well--always too tough except for the hearts.

i rmber bac in uni i cooked some artichokes and ate them with lemon and butter n scraped the leaves with my teeth and thought "er..what's the big deal?" only the hearts were edible and there was so little of it!

and it IS a rather bland veg. and like i said, even though fresh bamboo is rather bland too, we love it for the bite so i'm not saying tt i don't like it bc it's bland. it's just tt it isn't as good as it is made out to be. and again, i DO NOT dislike artichokes.

i promise u the next time i see fresh artichokes, i'll cook some n see if they move me.

health benefits of said...

Very nice and interesting recipe. I want to try this at my home for my loving wife... Thanks for the information

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