Somewhere around 2:45-ish, I found myself with nothing to do, and a raging hunger in my belly. I hadn't eaten, and this hunger... well... it was the kind of hunger that can only be satiated by one thing. It's a hunger that man has felt since ancient times... a hunger known to have only been bested by such mighty Khans as Genghis and Kublai. I'm talking about the hunger for Mongolian BBQ.
Now, anyone who lives in San Francisco and has a refined culinary palate such as my own knows that of all the wacky foods available here, especially those of Asian variety, Mongolian BBQ is not among them. As far as I can tell, the nearest place is all the way down in Mountain View, so I pointed my bike south and off I went.
My stomach grumbled as I navigated the peninsula freeways toward my destination. I distracted myself with thoughts of what a REAL Mongolian barbecue would look like: family and friends gathered in the backyard, maybe playing some croquet or tossin' the 'bee around, while dad stands by the gigantic round flat grill in the corner of the yard, big stick in hand as people hand him bowls of raw ingredients. His apron says something witty on it, like "Mongolians Do It Against The Wall". Meanwhile, Mom adds mix to the soft serve machine while sister chops pineapple and brother checks the rice in the cooker. I digress...
After a harrowing 35 minutes or so (Bay Area freeways on my motorcycle aren't my favorite thing to do, but I was in a hurry), I pulled in to Mountain View and found my way to Colonel Lee's (no relation to the General that I know of). Salivating profusely, I parked my bike and locked up my helmet. I was on the verge of passing out from low blood sugar and anticipation when I stepped up to the front door and found the place closed. Mother fucker. They close after lunch at 2, and then don't open again until 5. It was 3:30.
Not one to give up on a quest, I decided to wait out the ol' Colonel. I just needed to kill an hour and a half, and eat something small to keep me alive and sane until I could get that sweet sauce soaked combo of meat, noodle, and vegetable in to my belly. I decided to go to the movies, so I hit the road toward the other side of the freeway where the big movie theater was, stopping at Jack In The Box to eat a non-gigantic burger along the way.
I'm not going to say what movie I saw. Let's just say it was convenient and leave it at that.
After the movie, I rushed out of the theater and got back on my bike and headed back to Colonel Lee's. It was open and mostly empty, so I was able to get through the line quickly. Unfortunately, I wasn't ravenously starving, due to the burger, so all I could put down was one bowl's worth. Colonel Lee's isn't the best Mongolian place, but it'll suffice when that itch needs to get scratched. That's all this was about. Me and some dirty Mongolian chef in a dark and scummy motel room. Thanks, your eight bucks is on the dresser.
After dinner, I decided to take the long way home. I made my way over to Page Mill road, which is crazy twisty between where I was and Skyline. I then jumped on Skyline and headed north, past Alice's and in to Half Moon Bay. Even though it was dark now, I opted to hop over to Highway 1 for the scenic ride back to the city, rather than the 95 mile an hour deathmatch that 280 can be. I rolled in to the garage with 110 clicks on the odometer for the day, which pretty much puts Alex's ride to shame. Route embedded below.
Originally posted on pop.vox.com