The boy(s)

kleinberg, nyc and kingston oh my

Posted on August 19, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s), Travelling |

It’s funny but August seems to be my traditional month of busy-ness. Last year was exciting because Brian moved home and we had a jam-packed week with a wedding, opera, and then I went to England for two weeks.

This week was so fun and crazy busy! I took Monday off and Brian and I went to Kleinberg for the day. I used to go there as a kid with my mom and grandma. We would get all dressed up and have a lovely day out for lunch, tea and shopping. It was always such a special place for us to spend time together and I loved how the village looked. I would always get a little treat from one of the stores. My grandma loved the McMichael Art Gallery and we always ate at The Doctor’s House. From when I was about four, I always wanted to get married in the church that was right beside the restaurant.

So I wanted to take Brian to this place that was important to me and we had a great time. We got tea and coffee and walked through the village to the gallery. We looked at the beautiful artwork and bought some prints. Then went to a fantastic pub for a late lunch (I had the best mussels I’ve had in Ontario!). It was simply a lovely, perfect day.

Then I went to NYC for the first time. It was my first business trip ever and I was so excited. I flew into the city early in the morning and went directly to our offices. I loved them! And I loved everyone there — I felt immediately comfortable in the city and with everyone I met. When I had a free bit of time I wandered up to Times Square and then went out for dinner. After dinner I crashed, then got up early and walked down Fifth Avenue and to Central Park. I loved it! Every bit of it! Then I headed out to Bloomingdales and felt poor, so I went across the street to urban outfitters and bought a couple of things (because you can’t not buy something on your first trip to New York). I got to the airport really early and asked to fly standby. Which turned out to be a fantastic decision because they had overbooked flights and there was weather causing a back up. I learned one important thing — standby isn’t all about first come first serve, it’s about how many points you have on your aeroplan card and how much your ticket was. Luckily I got on a flight ahead of when mine was supposed to leave which actually left after mine was supposed to — so who knows when mine finally did. Anyway, it was a fantastic experience and I can’t wait to go back.

Then I got home and after a quick nights sleep went to Kevin’s soccer game and then headed up to Kingston to meet Brian who was heading down from Ottawa. We went to his friends wedding and it was a lovely day. Ironically the wedding we went to last year was on the same date and that couple was there, spending their anniversary at another wedding. Kind of romantic. It was the first wedding ever that I didn’t get teary eyed at though. I wonder if I will ever walk down the aisle — until this past year I would have said never in a million years, but now I’m liking the idea. Don’t get me wrong, I’m nowhere near angling for a ring, but should the situation arise, I would contemplate accepting a proposal from the right person.

And now I’m back home and ready to head out for sales conference — I’m completely exhausted and love the whirlwind life. The other best part is that I didn’t get a B12 shot last week and I’m not feeling the affects despite the insanity of the week and the consistent lack of sleep. Here’s hoping that I can reduce the frequency of shots.

And the rambling concludes here.

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to ottawa and back

Posted on June 30, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s), Travelling |

I took the train up to Ottawa on Tuesday night and it was only about an hour late because we broke down just outside of Gananoque. Brian met me at the train and we wandered around the city, trying to find food.

I met my cousin and his wife the next day for lunch. We haven’t had an actual conversation probably for 20 some odd years, so it was nice to talk as grown ups. Then I met up with two of my old housemates from Queen’s for dinner. And I have not had that much fun or laughed that hard since we lived together four years ago. Seriously. That was the absolute best year and I really wish we could get together more often than once every four years or so.

Brian was up there for a two week session with the NAC. We went to the final concert on Thursday night — all young, accomplished conductors. And it was really neat to see 5 conductors perform pieces back-to-back. We then booted it out of town, and stayed in Kingston overnight. We found a cheap, local motel that was actually really nice. After a quick breakfast with Brian’s friend Sean we were back to Toronto.

At my parents, my other housemate from Queen’s, and one of my closest friends happened to call — completing the reunion 🙂

I then raced home to see if the fish was okay (I was fish sitting for Brian) and he did not look so hot. Kind of hovering near the top of the bowl and not really moving. I was really quite worried as I’ve already grown quite attached to the fish. But he’s in new water and right as rain now.

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one day…

Posted on June 11, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s) |

Brian is contemplating moving to Europe. Not for a year or so, but contemplating (and I believe it’s a highly likely move). It would be great for his career for sure. And I think he should defintiely go. But I also think we would most likely end up ending things. So here’s a flash into the thirty second initial reaction to this discussion/news last night all in my head:

Okay so he’ll be leaving in a year or so which means we’ll likely break up because I won’t be going and so why are we bothering to be together now? Why not just break up now if it’s going to happen anyway? Why prolong the inevitable?

And then the more rational me thinks:

Because we’ll just have to wait and see and not worry about it until it happens and then deal with it.

And I continue to fluctuate between these two pools of thought.

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our trip — part two — the coast

Posted on June 2, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s), Travelling |

After our first few days in San Francisco, with our rental car secured, Brian and I left the city and headed for the coast. We travelled down windy highway 1 where the cliffs gave way to the ocean and it was beautiful.

A few hours in we stopped at Big Sur and went into a little artsy store where Brian found a gorgeous painting.  Back in the car a few minutes later we spotted a sign for The Henry Miller Memorial Library. I didn’t know that Henry Miller had lived in Big Sur but the library was this cool little bookstore and outside was a stage with couches for concerts. It was right up my alley. We looked around inside for a bit and of course I couldn’t leave without buying a copy of Tropic of Cancer. We stopped in San Simeon for the night in a Motel 6 after having a lovely dinner overlooking the ocean. Our waitress actually apologized to us, when she brought the bill, for George Bush.

The next morning we stopped in a little down called Cambria and went into some galleries and did some shopping then it was on our way through Santa Barbara — we stopped just outside of the city for lunch and some important hat shopping then went through L.A. (we didn’t stop at all) and we made it to San Diego in the early evening where we stopped again for a couple of days.

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not the messiah — a must see!

Posted on June 2, 2007. Filed under: Music, The boy(s), Theatre |

Brian and I went to see the world premiere (red carpet and everything) of Not the Messiah tonight at Roy Thompson Hall. Ironically is based on Monty Python’s Life of Brian (which also sheds some light on why a psychic once told my Brian that he was Jesus Christ).

Created by Eric Idle (who was also a soloist/narrator in the show) and John Du Prez with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and its conductor, Peter Oundjian (who happens to be Eric’s cousin — how great is that!?) AND members of the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir (talk about just about everyone you’d love to see on stage all at once). The performance was fantastic. The script was hilarious, well delivered, and the orchestra and choir were phenomenal.

We had seats that were in the balcony at the side and while we couldn’t see a bit of the front corner of the stage and could only see the soloists’ backs — they were really great seats because we could see the front of the conductor and all of the players and the choristers very close up.

I don’t want to tell you too much as I wouldn’t want to give the show away at all — but I will tell you that this was the first show I’ve seen in years or ever that I actually wanted to leap up for a standing ovation — as did the rest of the crowd. It lasted long enough for the soloists and creators to come back out on the stage for 3 or 4 extra bows. Well-deserved!

Please try to go and check it out — there are 2 more shows on the 2nd and the 4th of June in Toronto. It’s definitely worth the money and is a wonderful way to spend an evening.

Not the Messiah is part of Luminato so check it out too for more events going on in the city — I hadn’t heard about it until this year and am glad that I got to be a part of it.

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our trip — part one — san francisco

Posted on May 23, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s), Travelling |

After months of not seeing much of one another, Brian and I finally got to spend some quality vacation time together. We  flew to San Francisco about a week ago and checked into an old hotel called Nob Hill Hotel. It’s 100 years old and has so much character and charm. The staff were wonderful and the room was adorable and quaint. Definitely a hotel worth staying at. The first night we fought off jet lag by walking aimlessly around downtown. We meandered, looking for a restaurant that I could eat at, and stumbled upon a nice thai place near the Port of San Francisco.

Exhausted, we walked all the way back (uphill, I might remind you) and headed to bed. The next day was our touristy day. We went to Sears Fine Food for breakfast.  This is an adorable restaurant done up circa 1940. We actually had to line up outside, but the line moved quickly. From there we hiked across the city, visiting Coit Tower and it was a nice view of the city from the vantage point, but nothing spectacular. We stumbled across the Cable Car Museum on the way and it was very cool. You can actually see the cables being pulled and I had no idea that was how they worked — there’s actually a pulley/cable system beneath the streets that the car has to clamp onto.

From Coit Tower we managed to find our way to Fisherman’s Wharf and I had the best fresh crab ever at one of the oldest restaurants around.

Then, the main attraction: Alcatraz. We had been looking forward to this tour for a long time and were told that we had to book ahead through Alcatraz Tours to get a place and so we did. It cost about $90 Canadian for the two of us to get these tickets. We lined up with a few hundred other people and got seats on the top deck. The view of Alcatraz as we approached was eerie and cool. The view of the city was breathtaking. We couldn’t hear the audio in the boat because it was somewhat broken. But we managed to get over to the island in once piece. We got off the boat with the first 100 people and headed up 2 somewhat steep hills (or they seemed steep because our legs were wrecked from walking so much). The first thing the tour guide said to us was “does anyone have any questions?” Um, sure “what the hell is everything around us?”. He then talked about the movie The Rock and a Clint Eastwood movie for a bit before we continued up the hill. So far, we were both unimpressed.

But I was still excited.

We got inside and were given audios.

With 100 other people and a few hundred behind us we couldn’t really see much and the audio was very poorly recorded. I’m used to audio tours that either stop after they talk about the place you’ve been hearing about and then wait for you to press the button to continue, or are numbered. These were not. These tours seemed to be recorded by people who were not, nor ever had, walked through the things that they were talking about in the pace and time that they were speaking of them. Okay, it was neat to hear about everything in terms of the escape. But it was all that they really talked about and I was really looking for more than that. We didn’t learn any real history of the island. We kind of picked up the fact that it used to be a Military island, but that’s about it. All in all it was a terrible tour and really wasn’t worth the money. It’s cool to say that I’ve been there, but it was very disappointing all in all. I think the tour company needs to tweak a hell of a lot of it’s operations to give a quality experience. We decided that we’ve been spoiled by European tourist attractions, tours, and museums — they really have it right over there.

Absolutely knackered after the tour, we jumped on the Cable Car and made our way back to the hotel in no time. After walking across the entire city (also something I’m used to doing when on vacation, but it’s never this hilly nor this spread out) our legs hurt in places that we didn’t know we had. We ate at the Italian restaurant under the hotel and it was lovely.

The San Francisco portion of our trip came to a conclusion the next day when we tried to find a rental car, found one at Avis that was too expensive, left, and found that there were no other cars to be found in the city. So we rushed back to Avis only to find that the car was gone. BUT, they had a Suzuki Grand Vitara for way cheaper than the little car we were going to get stuck with. Not cool since gas was the most expensive it’s ever been in the US, but at least we had a way out. We also learned that Mondays are high car rental days. Who knew?

After briefly visiting Japantown, we fled the city and headed for the coast.

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the fantastic weekend continues

Posted on April 22, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s), The Little Bro |

I can’t believe the weather! I also can’t believe that it was 22 degrees outside while I was in a freezing cold arena. But, the lovely weekend of last night continued today. I did stuff around home this morning and then headed out to Weston for my little bro’s hockey tournament. It was the final game to see who went on to the championship game tomorrow. He was in net and didn’t get much work — his team did a great job in front of him, but they managed to pull off a 4-1 win. After going to two tournaments in which they were way out of their league (literally) it’s nice that they’ll get to finish off the year at least with a championship game. Unfortunately they will be exactly evenly match with the opposition and so, I’m not sure which way it will go.

From there I went down to Green Papaya with Brian and then over to IKEA for some more fun house stuff. I’m certain that I’m going to run out of money shortly…I should look into that. But they have super cute summer stock in now!

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a perfect, lovely evening: emily carr, the village idiot, and poetry

Posted on April 21, 2007. Filed under: Books, Friends, The boy(s) |

I can’t stop smiling!

🙂

Tonight was absolutely perfect! Brian and I met up after work (I even parked and took the subway — I’m trying to be better about not driving everywhere). We went to see the Emily Carr exhibit at the AGO. Now, I value Emily Carr as a person, an artist, and as a woman. She is iconic as a famous woman who had to overcome obstacles in a male world of art, but I’d have to say that seeing a whole exhibit of her work seemed a bit repetitive. The one thing I couldn’t get over was the sheer volume of the pieces of art there, not to mention the books that she penned — and there were two very intricate rugs that would take me a lifetime to complete (remember that blanket I started crocheting a year ago? ya, not done…).

From there we walked aimlessly to find a place that I could eat at. We settled on The Village Idiot, right across the street from the AGO. It was crowded and the windows were open (on this first beautiful day of spring) and I felt like I was back in London, England (Brian mentioned this too). It’s exactly the after-work-feel-like-you’re-in-Europe kind of establishment. And the food was really good and quite affordable.

Then, only a few steps away, we went to the IV Lounge to see my good friend Moez read at a poetry reading. He was reading with Rick Crilly and George Murray (who you may know from BookNinja). All of the poets were very talented and all had completely different styles. It was a star line-up I would say.  It was really enjoyable and witty and humorous and the poems were just fantastic! I also got to catch up with some friends from Queen’s. I realized when I left that while we were at Queen’s the friends that were there before were those who I would always to to or see at readings or other literary events on campus. And it was really nice to have that again tonight. Perfect even! I ran into a couple of other friends and met some new people (which is always part of a perfect night for me). Best of all, Brian was there for it all.

And I still can’t stop smiling.

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anniversary

Posted on April 4, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s) |

Brian and I still say happy anniversary every month — now on month 15. I think it’s sweet 🙂

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anniversaryish

Posted on March 5, 2007. Filed under: The boy(s) |

It was mine and Brian’s anniversary today and, even though I know the monthly ones don’t count after a year, today was yet another one where we were in different countries.

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