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  • I'm pretty sure my parents are the pickiest eaters in the city of Santa Fe. There is, however, one restaurant they never seem to have a problem with. At least not in the past, oh, eight years? It slips my mind how many years we've been going to Mu Du Noodles, or how often for that matter. We never actually plan to go. It just so happens, that in the course of the day, when we forget to buy groceries, that we are forced to go out. Both of my parents work, quite hard, and at the end of the day they are exhausted to say the least. Mu's is quite comfortable. No matter how hard, or trying a day may have been, I always seem to find home there. The owner, Mu Jing, has become a good friend. All the waiters and hosts are familiar, kind, and genuinely sincere every time we come in. Our continued appearances have earned us a table, under the mirror, with our backs to the kitchen. This is what Kevin calls western style. In case of a shootout of course, you never want your back to the enemy. This, at first glance, is nothing too terribly special. Yet, just the other night, it suddenly dawned on me. I wondered, how other families experience every day dinner time. Traditionally this would not be it. I don't feel pride in this. I'm only thankful for the memories. I would hardly open my mouth to order, and the waiter will say exactly what I'm having before I can make up my mind. In the end, their choice is without fail what i crave. Or what I need. Night after night, I began to realize more and more how much this place had become a part of my life. I had spent milestones here. Family celebrations were spent in the green room. Somehow, sharing stories with Murphy, and having the employees come and sit at our table to talk about life, has had more deep of an impression on me than I could have imagined. Precious memories of laughter with my mom, as we people watch... and strategic conversations about politics are engraved in my mind. Mu and Murphy notice when I'm sick by the sound of my voice, even if I'm not in the room, and they bring me a big pot of ginger tea (which is fantastic when you feel like crap. Seriously. Its the best). I remember, even early on, when Joel (the chef) would bring me dishes to taste that weren't on the menu. It made me feel so special to try such unique original flavors few other souls have tried. To me, this is my dinner table. This is my home. This my kitchen. The place where I feel most comfortable, and surrounded by friends and casual strangers. My normal. Mind you, I am not a very normal person to begin with. Perhaps you have already noticed.
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