Wednesday, May 31, 2006

home sweet home

heavy but not overweight!
I took public transit to get to the airport. From past experience on missing flights by a few minutes, I gave myself plenty of time and still got booted off at Isslington when they announced that the train was out of service. Still managed to get to the airport with lots of cushion time. It was not an easy trip though with my tripping down the subway stairwell to get my suitcase down. In fact, they ended up sticking a heavy load tag on my bag (to give you an idea!)

It's been a few days and I'm still running on eastern time but I am so happy to be back, missing the TTC strike by a couple of days and missing the terribly hot and humid weather (32 feeling like 40 degrees!) and tornado and thunderstorm warnings!! Ah the bliss of fresh air. Ocean and mountain views. Awesome sushi. I'm glad to be home.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

from fire to ice

It's the May long weekend. It's the first unofficial long weekend of summer. This is the time when the weather is supposed to be nice and the air conditioning kicks in. Unfortunately for me (and the poor residents in my building), the weather sucked big time with lightning storms and just dreary grey skies. My building is strange. They have to switch off the heat for a few days before they can turn on the air conditioning so it's anybody's guess how it will go. This time around, looks like we lost out as it was almost colder being inside than out. I was bundled up in my fleece and had to wear socks to bed - it was THAT insanely cold inside my apartment.

I complained and so did others apparently; the superintendent had been paged but nowhere to be seen. Smart. He was probably off enjoying his long weekend.

Friday, May 19, 2006

my inferno

It's been one hell of a week. This time of year is always stressful with orientation and training sessions that I am responsible for. Add on top of that... a friend who was able to secure a car for work the night before she was expected to go offsite rang me and asked if I wanted to do some shopping. Of course I hopped at the chance. It's not every day I have access to a car. We hit some large department stores and I came home with sundries. Another night I was invited by a co-worker, who was horrified that I did not own a tv, to her place to catch some season finales. I went more as an opportunity to socialize than anything else. We had a blast chatting. And I caught Winfield's Inferno at the Royal Alexandra Theatre. It was a hilarious and impressive one-man show.

The work week would have been bearable except for a hydro failure that knocked out the computers and phone systems all morning. (That and the crazy neighbour.) The computers were up around noon but the phones were still down til about 2:30pm. Made for an interesting and frustrating morning thanks to a rat that had tripped the circuits and knocked out power to the downtown core. So here I was in a mad rush to finish off preparation work for the presentations and my hands were tied. I was so relieved when the week was over.

Monday, May 15, 2006

keeping the middle of the night

I was jolted out of slumber last night around 2:10am. I know what time it was because I checked. I heard a slamming of the doors and thought someone must have had an argument and was mad. But then a short while later, another slam. And another. And another. I thought, what the hell?? I rolled out of bed and ran to my door, thinking maybe in this crazy city that there was an altercation going on. I half expected security to be up here. I opened the door and poked my head out. Nothing. So I went back to bed. And a short while later, yet another slamming of the doors. This time, I caught my neighbour, two doors down, walking into her apartment. She hadn't seen me.

I figured it out. She was taking out the trash. At 2 am. For crap's sake. I live in a building where the apartment doors have this suction seal for security purposes etc. Everyone knows the doors slam if you don't make an attempt to shut it quietly. And anyway, how many trips does she need to make? The garbage chute is literally two steps away from her front door and I can't figure out what she's getting rid of that HAD to be done in the middle of the night (unless it was her boyfriend now-ex-boyfriend's stuff?!) There used to be a note in the room saying to not toss stuff down after 10:30pm but when I checked today, it was no longer there. If it's not one noisy neighbour, it's another.

As I realized it was fairly certain she hadn't seen me, I decided to leave a note for the culprit reminding her about courtesy to her neighbours; I stuck the note in her door when I came home after work. Let's hope she reads and understands English.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

trip down memory lane

When someone says Toronto, I assume most people think of the CN Tower. Or the Blue Jays. Maybe even pollution and lots of shootings. What comes to my mind is Honest Ed's. I hadn't been to this famous institution since I was 13 and so I decided it was about time I made a trek over to see if the reality meshed with my very vague memories.

Well, it was not at all like what I remembered apart from the bright and flashing garish lights outside screaming "Honest Ed's." In fact, it reminded me very much of Army & Navy, what with the layout and all the junk you could dig through. As my friend said, they carry clothes, but it's not what you'd call fashion. We spent a couple of hours just browsing through the aisles. They had a lot of crap and most of it was cheap but I had to keep reminding myself that it was not quite the dollar store, although if it was, I'd probably buy a boatload of useless stuff just because I'd be telling myself that it was only a dollar.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

cirque fix

Some of you may know that I absolutely love Cirque du Soleil. I've seen three of their shows in Vegas, and know that their latest show, Love, (something to do with the Beatles) is opening soon at the Mirage. To tide me over for the next little while, I went to see Cirque Eloize. Their show, Nomade, is currently running at the Canon Theatre. The show was good with a very small cast of 14, the music was a bit too loud, and overall, there could be more polish but otherwise, it will sustain me til my next Cirque show.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

the honeymoon is over

I've acquired a new roommate. Actually 2. They don't live with me, but they live right next door in the corner suite. There only used to be one girl who lived there. She was away for such a long time I was wondering if she'd just left. There were all these notes and letters stuck in her doorway including a hot pink note reminder her that her rent was overdue. Apparently she was travelling. And then she came back. With a new husband in tow. I personally don't really care but they were acting like an old married couple already, staying in almost every night. How do I know? I could hear their tv as if I was in the room next door. It was that loud. I guess it's almost as good as having my own tv, except I can't see the shows and don't understand whatever it is they are watching as it's not in English!

Friday, May 05, 2006

mmm... morton's

I've been having cravings of sushi lately. I'm eagerly anticipating my trip back home whereupon I will gorge myself with seafood but in the meantime, I had to settle for the next best thing: a big honking juicy piece of meat.

My friend and I set up a date to use the Morton's gift certificate from February. We sat down and she requested the menu; our waitress responded by asking whether we'd like to see the menu presentation. We nodded dumbly and watched as she wheeled out on a cart a silver platter with the various cuts of raw meat tightly held down by syran wrap. She went through the menu with the different types and cuts of meat and then went on to the tray of veggies. These were to demonstrate the portion size as they were all a la carte.

I had been thinking of getting the ribeye but my friend and I decided to split the porterhouse instead. The double porterhouse (for two, carved tableside) was a mere $106. The single order of the porterhouse steak was a whopping 24 oz.! and we were sharing that...I could not imagine tackling a 24 oz. steak on my own! Apparently this cut is the most popular as it has both the ribeye and New York strip. I thought I'd like the ribeye more but surprisingly preferred the New York bit. It was probably THE best steak I've ever had both tenderness-wise and flavour-wise. I was completely stuffed. And we had ordered a half dozen malpeque oysters and broiled sea scallops wrapped in bacon with an apricot chutney as appys.

We capped the night off at the rooftop lounge on the 18th floor of the Hyatt where we shivered out on the patio so we could look at the skyline. It was a weird perspective for me. I've gotten used to seeing the city one way but this time I was looking towards the office towers downtown. We had a couple of drinks and headed home, still stuffed to the brim. Time to go on a diet...

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

rites of spring

A week or so ago, I've started noticing greenery in and around the city. Daffodils and tulips have been sprouting. These, obviously, are all potted in this very concrete jungle. The outdoor rinks have all melted and turned into swimming pools for the pigeons. Spring has sprung. And so have my allergies. The plus is that the weather is finally what I would call bearable. I have heard horror stories of spring being sandwiched into a weekend between winter and summer. So far, the last couple of weeks have been fairly pleasant.

quarry in elora I don't like birthdays anymore for the reason that it sucks to get older, no one remembers, and you don't really get presents the way you did when you were a kid. The upside was celebrating my birthday with a trip out to the countryside that included a bike ride out in the trails, time at the spa, and good, delicious food. Ok, so getting older isn't always so bad...but can I stay this age forever and still keep having birthday celebrations?