Thursday, January 24, 2013

Have you met Maya?

Just off the square in Greensburg is a little restaurant called Mayasari’s Indonesian Grill.  It has a small, unassuming storefront that is marked with an image of a distinctly tribal-looking person/creature.  The first time I laid eyes on the image, I just knew I was in for a treat!  I walked in, took a seat and spotted a small Indonesian woman hurrying toward me.  She introduced herself as “Maya”, and my culinary world has never been the same.

Maya, the owner of Mayasari’s, has brought a fusion of Indonesian and American cuisine to Greensburg.  I had never tried Indonesian food before I met Maya, but she opened my eyes to a whole new world of flavors and food.  Every day, Maya serves up some menu staples- curry, egg rolls, fried rice, hamburgers, chicken to name a few- and then she will also often have a special of the day.  I have tried the beef ribs, seafood soup, several lamb dishes and quite a few others including some amazing desserts.  I've been to Mayasari’s at least once almost every week since I moved back to town, and she keeps enticing me back with new menu items.  I've gone alone, with lunch buddies, and even with my kids, who also love Mayasari’s.  Maya has incorporated a kid’s menu of items that are familiar to a child, but still have her Indonesian flare.  My kids’ favorite is chicken wrapped in bacon on a stick.  Seriously, what kid doesn't like food on a stick?

I have to say, though, that the best part of “Mayasari’s” is Maya herself.  I have a lot of food allergies, and Maya has bent over backward to make sure I can eat healthy and tasty food- safely.  (I wrote about that on my other blog- ***here is a link*** if you want to read more about Maya’s allergy-friendly foods.)  She knows my kid’s names and she greets me as a friend every time I walk in the door.  She is always grateful for anyone who comes to her restaurant, and she expresses her gratitude every time someone walks in the door.  I’m glad Maya found my hometown, and I’m thankful that I found her!

Friday, January 18, 2013

The Destination Between Destinations

When I was growing up in Greensburg, Indiana, there used to be a sign on the interstate boldly proclaiming that Greensburg was, “Your Destination between Destinations!”  Apologies to whomever wrote the slogan, but I always thought that it was hilarious and just a little sad.  Think about it- according to the sign Greensburg isn't where you started and it isn't where you want to end up; it is right in the middle.  The sign might as well have read, “Greensburg- a great place to stop and pee!” 

When I went away to college, I let that sign determine how I viewed my hometown.  I thought of it as just someplace out in the middle of nowhere- someplace where you didn't really have a reason to stop.  (Unless, of course, you counted the tree in the sky- and why exactly was there a tree in the sky???)  But now that I am older, I realize that our little hamlet in the middle of nowhere is actually a decent little city in the middle of somewhere- and not a bad place to live, either. 

My husband and I recently decided to move back to Greensburg after being away for 17 years.  It seems that when we were away growing up ourselves, Greensburg grew up a little bit, as well.  We have additional restaurants now, and our very own movie theater! (Hey, that may not seem like a big deal to you, but talk to the people who dated in the 80’s and 90’s- a theater and more restaurant choices are welcome additions to the City!)

I want other people to see Greensburg the way that I see it now- full of traditions and potential for the future.  I will be writing this blog to share my new found knowledge and respect for my hometown.  I will be covering some of the traditional events that have happened for years, as well as some of the new opportunities that have become available.  I don’t think that Greensburg is your “destination between destinations”. Instead, I think it can be just “THE Destination.”  And lucky for me, it is once again simply “home.”