minibar and the spark of a major gastronomic journey

When I lived in Alexandria, Virginia from June 2013 until August 2016, I took advantage of every opportunity to explore the culinary landscape across the national capital region. I began in Old Town, conveniently located less than two miles from my apartment. On the weekends, I rode the metro train into Washington, DC to dine at the multitude of restaurants there, both vanguards and newcomers alike. I Uber-ed endlessly around the political heart of the nation, eating solo at first and later with an eclectic mix of friends and strangers. I was constrained neither by time nor by distance. I indulged in all types of food buoyed by unbridled enthusiasm and an unapologetic appetite. Without realizing it at the time, I was also falling in love with food, not just the diversity and availability of cuisines but by the idea of what food could be, what it could represent, and also its ability to shape and evolve my perspective on life. Food quickly became both metaphor and philosophy.

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