more than a detailed itinerary...


It was inevitable that April would be rainy. I'm a little disappointed by the gloom because it just makes it harder to be here. My Easter break in Edmonton was fantastic. A. had the entire time off so we ended up spending more time together than we did over the entirety of my Spring Break visit.

My trip went a little like this...

I arrived Wednesday evening and was picked up by W. at the airport. Our timing was almost perfect as he pulled up to the parking meter just as I was getting my luggage from the carousel, however I was a little late exiting from the terminal building and I was not able to stop him from inserting significant coinage into the meter. Oh well, I was properly punished by nearly tripping over my suitcase as I ran to the car (it jarred a bit going off the curb and hit my knobby little ankle). From the airport we took off for the city, venting about our respective work... the highs, the lows... the median, means, and quotients. We played catch up over shaved ice at the Dream Tea House (most delicious, but the kiwi was a little strong) and then W. dropped me off but only after he was faced with the challenge of manouevering his automobile in the parking lot of A.'s building. The remainder of Wednesday was pretty low key... I indulged in more catch up with A.'s roomie and was introduced to the world of "How to Deal", the game show hosted by Boston Pizza's own Howie Mandel. The premise of the game was explained with a whole set of monkeys and boxes, but I don't really care for the whole game show scene (with the exception of Jeopardy which I enjoy quite a bit) so I opted out from watching the show until it concluded.

On Thursday A. and I took to the streets, as it was brilliant and sunny outside and he had an appointment at the university with his little orientation goslings. We only walked part way as we were late leaving the house... so after passing by the bum who had taken up residence under the bridge near the Legislature, we ran through the tunnels that led to the Grandin LRT station... me clutching my camera bag and purse so that the contents would not smash against my hip thereby injuring me both physically (bruised hip) and emotionally (damaged camera). Luckily there were no harmful results from the mad dash to catch the train. After A.'s meetup with his little goslings, we wandered around campus... me, armed with my camera to go for an unofficial tour and indulge my attempts at architectural photography. I often forget that A. has spent many years as a guide for new students on campus, and at times I would catch myself wondering for a second or two why he was so ready with little interesting facts about this building or mural when I asked about it. He was quite handy to have around... in fact many of W.'s (and A.'s) chums would be fairly handy to have around when touring campus since at one time or another they were all goslings that turned into geese. We went for lunch at R.A.T.T (Room at the Top...bad food, but we went for the view) and then wandered to the LRT station to head to W.'s. I was wondering where the hell W. was at this point... since I was expecting his call, but I wasn't really thinking earlier and thanks to multiple email addresses and my neglecting to turn on my cellphone... well let's just say that wires were crossed and it was all my fault that poor W. was left hanging on a thread not knowing if I was alive or dead. (Darling, I'm sorry... please forgive me.) We hung out for awhile and later headed to one of the nearby pubs... but it being "game night" and all, the pubs were jam packed and like Mary and Joseph (and the donkey since there were three of us) we could not find any room. On A.'s suggestion we headed to a place called Martini's... and settled in for some wine and the closest we could get to pub fare. It was a grand old time. W. could tell you what type of wine we had, for I don't recall... although I do mean to start writing down what wine I have consumed (not to see if I am an alcoholic, merely to make note of the vino that I like and the vino that I do not). We met up with A. (another one)... and periodically I leapt out of my seat when Edmonton scored a goal (not from excitement but from shock since I wasn't really watching the game at all). We ended the night at W.'s apartment with my A. demonstrating his fine balance and black belt kicks. But by then I was tired and needed to sleep so A. and I walked the few blocks back to the apartment, passing by Jesus with his arms outstretched in the light.

On Friday my chum of all chums took off for Vegas to meet up with his delightful family (read more about that here and see pics here) so I was left to my own devices. I cried for three hours because he was gone.

Of course I'm bending the truth a little bit. I only cried for two hours...

But on Friday A. and I went to the Princess Theatre (really the Princess 2, as we were in the downstairs cinema) and saw Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story... but we were a little late not that arriving on time would have helped since it was an unusual film. We walked along Whyte Ave and made our way through the throngs of people to Dadeo's, which is quite a fun little restaurant with 50s style decor and Cajun style cooking. We sat upfront by the window and I got to watch all the style mavens (both male and female) strut past with their oversize sunglasses. After lunch we strolled back to the apartment, stopping in to pick up some films, which we watched later that evening. Our choices were destined to be bad... since we tried to go for more lighthearted fare. Prime with Uma Thurman and Meryl Streep seemed to last forever, and The Weatherman with Nicolas Coppola/Cage just didn't hit the bullseye with us (hardy har har... little archery humour for ya).

Saturday... the weather turned sour, but A. had arranged to rent a car so we could go for a photoshoot in areas of the city that were not speedily accessible by public transit and/or foot. However, due to the poor weather we did not take much in the way of pictures. We did however brunch it at Cafe Select (marvelous, as per usual... which I can say since I have brunched there before) since "Best Eggs Benedict in the City" Barb & Ernies had a lineup out the door. We drove around quite a bit... as A. was searching for this book store that used to be next to a yarn store (since I am in search of a good Edmonton yarn store), but much to our dismay the yarn store was no longer there and the book store was not open. Realizing that the weather was crap we decided to forgo extensive shooting and instead tried our luck inside the vacated Sidetrack Cafe. It was rather amusing as inside was a fellow in a suit, top hat, and cane dancing to this really annoying song "Meet Me at the Wrecking Ball" while his friend videotaped the poorly choreographed routine of stomp and cane toss. A. and I wandered with our respective Canons inside the bare building, but called it quits when our hands started to get too cold. We then stopped in at a few furniture stores on what I will refer to as "Furniture Alley" since most places only sold particle board crap. That night we tried out a new restaurant called "il Portico" and I was wowed by the pan seared scallop appetizer and the simple, but delicious panna cotta dessert. A.'s tiramisu was also excellent. The ambience was quite nice although A. and I were the most dressed up couple in the entire restaurant. However, I must add... it was rather amusing to me to note that A. could have easily been a server as he was dressed entirely in black. I think in the future he will have to avoid that particular wardrobe combination when we eat out.

The weather on Sunday was also quite gross as it involved snow. I was not impressed, but A. and I had no plans to leave the apartment other than to go to the grocey store. That night we decided to continue with our trend of eating well, but our eyes were much bigger than our appetites and we prepared steaks that were far too large for our bellies to handle. We didn't help matters much by tempting ourselves with some dessert crepes. But that is what Sunday was about... food and my general review of the photos I'd taken the day before.

Monday... more walking and photos. The sun was out, although is was a wee bit windy. A. and I were shooting with a purpose... a contest that was looking for photos that demonstrated city services interacting positively with the environment. I have to admit that I was a bit strapped for ideas, so we took a lot of shots of public transit and the city trails system. I have found that I shoot a lot without reviewing right away on my LCD screen (which is good), but I had neglected change the white balance for my first set of shots and they all came out with a blue tinge as they were balanced for incandescent light. I was not impressed... it is fixable... but I'd prefer that I didn't have to fix that sort of thing in post. When we crossed the bridge A. and I stopped in at the High Level Diner for a light lunch and then walked the few short blocks to the university where we caught the bus that would take us to Goldbar Park and the water treatment facility. The park was quite nice and reminded me a bit of parkhopping with Tonio in Victoria. However, A. tells me that if the wind is blowing the wrong way that the picturesque quality of the park is ruined by the foul smell of sewer. How delightful... I will be sure to check the wind if we are to visit again sometime in the summer. I took quite a few more pictures and then we jumped back on the bus for the return trip. I was expecting W. to return from his Vegas trip that evening... but I noticed he had called while we were in transit when A. and I stopped in at the grocery store. And just like that I dropped everything and rushed to see my chum of all chums and hear of his Vegas adventures. Well actually, it was more like A. and I stood in line at the cashier and then dropped off the groceries and then walked to W.'s where we were entertained with an impromptu slideshow of Vegas opulence and a quick preview fo what is sure to become his best magic trick ever. That evening A. and I had a late supper, this time some savoury crepes - the contents being our attempt at the delicious appetizer we had at il Portico. It turned out quite well I think... My sweet chef makes a very good wine reduction, something which he scoffs at since he aspires to be the Iron Chef that reigns supreme.

I was scheduled to depart Tuesday afternoon. A. had yet another day off of work and we had to pick up his Easter basket box from his parental units... so once again we went for a walk, this time down Jasper in search of the post office, a Royal Bank branch, and lunch. We ate at the Wok Box (or Noodle Box, I don't remember which) and made delightful commentary about the family sitting out on the patio. We returned to the apartment, consumed some lovely chocholate and then spent a couple hours discussing space and design. Then I had to leave... but luckily we only had to walk a couple blocks to Canterra Suites Hotel where I caught the shuttle and left the lovely city for a lesser one.

and that was my trip... see pictoral evidence here.


  1. I read the entire thing. Everything seems in order except for the bit about the TV show. I think it's called "Deal or No Deal."

  2. ah yes... How to Deal is a movie I think. Oh well, I didn't really care for it. Like I said, I prefer Jeopardy.

    And I certainly hope that you read the whole thing... I don't write this junk so people won't read it you know.