Last week was probably one of the most stressful and emotional weeks I’ve had in a long while. In a nutshell: my relationship of a year ended, I was dog/house sitting, my allergies from the dog turned into a full-blown cold with fever, experienced lots of interrupted sleep, and had no choice but to be at work because the house I was staying at belonged to my office manager. This meant there was one less person in the office and it was necessary for me to be there. I was completely physically and emotionally drained. Thankfully, my boss let me leave early on Thursday. Before I could go back to the house to rest, I needed to make a very important soup stop.
Pho 501 is a little place in East Hartford, CT set in a small plaza that you’d probably drive right by without knowing it’s there. The staff is extremely friendly and service is fast. Prices are very reasonable ($8.50 for a medium all beef) and you get a lot. It is by far the best Pho I have ever had in this state, and it has saved my sicknesses on more than one occasion.
I was desperate for this warm, comforting bowl of therapeutic bliss. Using the largest bowl I could find, I poured out the entire to-go container of Pho. The smell of aromatic broth was instantly calming. Then I added all the components: bean sprouts, torn Thai basil, sriracha, hoisin sauce, and lots of fresh squeezed lime juice. Finally, I grabbed the chopsticks and a spoon, and parked myself onto the couch where I did not plan on moving till bedtime. The dog napped while I slowly slurped up my soup. It was as if she knew I needed this time to relax and nurse myself back to health.
At that moment in time, all was right in my world.