This month’s adventure for the Destinations Book and Dinner Club was the memoir The Lost Girls and the eclectic tapas restaurant Firefly Summerlin in Las Vegas.
The Lost Girls: Three Friends, Four Continents, One Unconventional Detour Around the World by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett and Amanda Pressner is about three friends in their late 20s who abandon their magazine and media careers in New York City to spend a year circumventing the globe.
The friends take turns writing the chapters, which are written chronologically according to their travels. Throughout their travels, the girls hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu in Peru, relax on the beaches of Salvador in Brazil, volunteer at an orphanage in Kenya, stay at an ashram in India, explore the recently-opened-to-foreign-tourists destination of Laos, bungee jump in New Zealand and road trip around Australia in a gigantic van. I’d been to a few of their destinations (Peru, Brazil and Kenya), so it was great to reminiscence, and since I want to travel everywhere, the book gave me event more travel ideas.
The book is interesting in that it’s written from three points-of-view, and each of the “The Lost Girls” has her own travel personality and life issues to deal with on the road. Jen, for example, is a thrill seeker, Jen and Amanda enjoy the backpacker party scene, and Holly is into experiential learning. Almost immediately into reading the book, I identified with Holly, and especially enjoyed reading about her connection with an orphan in Kenya and her yoga teacher training course at an ashram in India. I’m not much for zip-lining, bungee jumping or partying with a bunch of backpackers, but if that’s your thing, there’s something in this book for every kind of budget traveler.
Through this book, I also discovered the website and blog “Lost Girls World,” which Jen, Holly and Amanda began during their travels and which continues on as a travel resource site especially geared toward young women. And if you’re interested in travel writing, they’re looking for contributors. (I’m waiting to hear back on my own article pitch.)
Now on to dinner at Firefly Summerlin.
I’d been to this location once before, and a number of times to their other location near the Las Vegas Strip. Rumor has it that they’ll be opening up a third location in Henderson soon.
For libations, I tried the house-made blackberry-infused vodka and we split a pitcher of sangria among four of us. The alcohol content seemed to be a bit light (I had a slight buzz only after 3 drinks), but it was happy hour and you can’t argue with a $14 pitcher of sangria.
While their menu features paella and a few other hearty main dishes, what Firefly is really known for is their tapas/small plates. I tried their ahi tuna skewer with mango and a mustard-ginger glaze, their roasted baby beet salad, and shared an order of pulpo asado (marinated octopus) with my husband. The ahi tuna was excellent. The octopus was decent, but not the best I’ve had. I chose the beet salad as a health-minded dish, and it was good, especially with the addition of toasted pecans.
For dessert, I chose the fruit and cheese plate, which included 3 different types of Spanish cheeses, grapes, apple slices, grilled bread and more of those tasty toasted pecans. By that time I was pretty stuffed from the tapas, so most of the dessert came home with me for breakfast this morning.
I’m already looking forward to our April meet-up: C. M. Mayo’s Miraculous Air: Journey of a Thousand Miles through Baja California, the Other Mexico + dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. Even more exciting is the trip to Ireland that the Destinations Book and Dinner Club is planning for next March. I’m sending in my trip deposit today!