I am thinking about Jasper, Alberta and a small bit of pathway that winds behind some of the homes of the tiny town. We’re walk along this black path at night after the bars closed, (we as in me and my friends, we were Tram Kids – working for the summer at the Jasper Tramway) on the way back to the giant house where many of us lived. It was completely unlit, and I’d have to trust my memory of having walked that path a hundred times before during the day as we took the shortcut to our home.
Jasper, just so you know, is a town inside of a National Park. That means animals cannot be hunted here, and it’s perfectly normal for elk to roam around the streets and chew on people’s lawns. It’s also not unheard of for other wild animals to find their way into the suburban streets, parks and pathways. A small part of me always wondered if there was a bear in the shadows as I walked back home, though a larger part of me just wanted to go to bed.
Anyhow one night as we were coming home, we stopped in this black pathway area and lay on the ground. All of us were tired, sweaty from dancing and high on being young. But, knowing there were meant to be shooting stars, we lay on the grass beside the path and looked up into space – big, black, never-ending space. One after another we spotted shooting stars, clusters of shooting stars, herds of shooting stars. If there was ever a night to make a wish, that had to be it. I cannot remember what I might have wanted, but I think on that evening with my friends on the damp grass along the path, I had pretty much everything I could ever wish for.
. . .
Except for Zsolt, but I didn’t know to wish for him back then. And that’s another story.
I am thinking about how difficult it must be for small businesses, particularly restaurants that can’t afford to set up in the trendier parts of town. There are some really nice, cheap and cheerful venues around Vanier – unexpected compositions of flavour at reasonable prices. And yet the seats are empty. This afternoon I attempted to go to Golden India for their lunch buffed having heard their food is excellent but the restaurant is struggling, and somehow instead ended up at a place called El Tucan, which was also rather nice. The food was comforting, and the atmosphere had South American flare thanks to the 70s South American film playing over the speakers and on the television by the bar, and a lovely lady . . . possibly from El Salvador (just a guess since the restaurant had Salvadorian food), helping us with our meal choices. It wasn’t as cheap as the Snack Shack, but she was most certainly cheerful.
These little places have so much heart poured into them. It must take heaps of courage to start a restaurant and say: “I don’t care about the failure rate for restaurants, I’m starting up (insert restaurant name here) and it’s going to be incredible!”
A highlight of this particular restaurant, apart from their really yummy spicy jalapeno sauce, were the drinks. I had a cashew nut fruit drink, which started off nutty and then switched to floral sweetness. Zsolt had a sweet and sour drink, which (can you guess?) started off sweet and then moved to sour. We were impressed.
After the meal we walked just a little bit along Montreal road and looked through the windows of all the small restaurants. So many small restaurants, so much competition, and so many empty seats. . .
I am thinking that grammar is one tricky b*ch. There are so many rules, and it changes depending upon location and organization . . . Zsolt and I keep getting into confusing disagreements whenever he asks me the random English language question. Like why are ‘pants’ considered plural? How do you shorten a quote? Is it that or which? And you know what – I hardly ever know the correct answer.
Forget the MLA handbook or Harvard guide to whatever. Lately I go to TheOatmeal.com or the Grammarist, or just plain GOOGLE the phrase to see the debate of its usage. And there’s always debate. I know of only one woman in this entire world who may have a handle on all these rules, but she’s particularly brilliant with this stuff and far above normal human capacity regarding theory around language. She’s like the Super Woman of Grammar.
I am thinking we don’t have enough candles. The lights just flickered here in Ottawa; we have a total of one Glade scented candle, and I’m guessing its little light wouldn’t be enough to sustain us for an evening. Hmm. Isn’t that doom day soon approaching? But then, what good would a few candles do if the whole world went kaput?
I am thinking that I need to make dinner, and yet have no clue what to serve. This is a daily occurrence. 😉
P.S. TONIGHT is PRIDE AND PREJUDICE at the NAC. Awesomeness wrapped in petticoats!