You're not my home or native land, but I still think you're pretty spectacular. For my 30th birthday this past April, my best friend, Jenny, surprised me with a trip to Canada! Yeah, I know, greatest best friend ever. In reality, it was all thanks to the Pampered Chef... well, Jenny's ability to sell their awesome products.
Now, I've been to Canada a couple of times, once, I visited one of their fine French speaking airports for 48 hours... FORTY EIGHT HOURS, thanks to a menacing snowstorm that refused to budge. Angry passengers were yelling at angry airline staff in angry Canadian French. Me, I slept on a plastic chair with my sister and nephew and subsisted off day old bagels and questionable beverages... not the best introduction to a country I've ever had. The second time, thankfully, was much more fun, and can be read about in my very first blog post!
This trip to Canada however, was nothing but straight up awesomeness. But, it did begin a little strangely... I won't rehash, but to say that the worst string of tornadoes to hit Alabama in my lifetime struck the day before we left, leaving everything in a state of havoc. Driving to Jenny's in complete darkness, no streetlights, no store signs, not even a visible moon, was one of the eeriest experiences in my life.
"What do all these lines mean?"We flew to Canada, hopped our transportation shuttle, dropped our bags off at the hotel, registered, and proceeded to immediately get lost on the streets of Toronto. Now, navigation isn't a strong suit for either of us, and I'm pretty sure we won't be earning our merit badges in map reading anytime soon. Originally, we were looking for China Town, hoping to grab a spot of dinner. Instead we ended up in the gay district looking very much like the helpless, hapless American tourists that we were.
Eventually, we decided to scrap the plan for China Town and headed towards the somewhat closer Greek Town... not that we knew how to get there either. Thankfully, some kind Canadian lady took pity on us and approached, asking if we were lost and if she could help. With her directions and only a couple of wrong turns, we found our way to Greek Town. We were both pretty exhausted from all the walking getting lost entailed, so much so, we didn't bother to take many (any) pictures, but take my word, Greek Town was excellent, mainly because it offered me a meal consisting of Souvlaki, feta cheese, lemony rice, and pita bread- much better than the... unsatisfying bag of nothing... offered on the airplane.
And that was day one in the great province of Ontario!
Day 2, which happened to be my birthday, started very early... all thanks to a couple of high profile Brits. I won't lie... I was excited about the Royal Wedding. I'm not much older than William and have always been interested in the exploits of the British crown. I thought Wills was handsome, Kate, absolutely stunning, and Harry was dashing (and ginger and awesome!)
That dress was perfection.
After watching the wedding, it was breakfast time... and the Pampered Chef knows how to put on a spread, but you'd kind of assume that given that they're "The Pampered CHEF." It was amazing, but we still went for birthday donuts afterward, because, well... 30.
*Cue Homer Simpson face*
I'd never actually had Tim Horton's before this trip, but I'd heard their goodness extolled constantly by Jenny. Personally, I thought they were pretty good, and the one that has cinnamon in it is outstanding, but nothing compared to the wonders offered by our local Fultondale Bakery.
After Tim's... I think we took naps. I know, we're not exciting, but that wedding was at an unholy hour! Besides, it was my birthday, and trust me, that nap was a present. After that, it was time to explore the city a little, and by explore the city, I mean find a place for a birthday lunch. (Seriously, we did do more than eat on this trip.)
POUTINE! Yes, Canada's famous concoction of fries covered in cheese curds and gravy finally made its way my face. I must say, I wasn't a great fan of this particular gravy, but the concept is a good one. I do like my fries with an obscene amount of ketchup, but this was a nice departure, and with a better gravy, it'd be awesome.
We had this birthday lunch at a little brewery, Les 3 Brasseurs, which we found while walking around downtown. We didn't know anything about it, but the food was tasty, the service good, and they offered free tours, which was a nice bonus.
Next post... NIAGARA FALLS!