A Few Thoughts and Photos from the Weekend

Since the Canada Day holiday fell on a Thursday, Jeremy and I booked Friday off as well to enjoy an extra long weekend. We didn’t have any big travel aspirations but couldn’t bear the thought of a staycation so we went on a quick overnight trip to Rochester, NY.

After some shopping and an amazing meal at Monte Alban Mexican Grill we picked up some frozen custard from Abbott’s.

We’d never had frozen custard before and we were wondering what made it different from soft serve. It was much thicker and creamier. It’s way better than Dairy Queen.

The next morning we had breakfast at IHOP. It was Jeremy’s idea and I was surprised because he’s spoken bitterly about the chain since our first (and until Friday, only) dining experience there years ago. He’d been disappointed their limited selection of pancakes. For a restaurant that calls itself the International House of Pancakes he expected a lot more. Jeremy takes his pancakes very seriously and often takes his own jug of maple syrup out to brunch. He finds table syrup too pedestrian.

While the selection of pancakes is lacking, I discovered that they’re putting the batter in everything, including the omelets. “A splash of our buttermilk pancake batter for extra fluffiness,” the menu read under the description for the veggie omelet I was planning to order.

Reason 1, 426, 895 why North Americans are getting fat: WE’RE PUTTING PANCAKE BATTER IN OUR EGGS!!!

I had a fruit cup. It was the only thing on the menu I could be sure would be pancake free.

After breakfast we visited the George Eastman House and Photography Museum. The museum itself was very interesting with lots of vintage cameras and old photos showing the evolution of the technology.

The house and garden was lovely, although the décor was a little unnerving.

Nothing shows your passion for nature like a hoof ashtray stand. In the background you can see a raccoon pelt throw over the sofa, its fringe made up of furry striped tails. In the same room another couch was adored with a leopard skin. If that wasn’t horrifying enough, there is an elephant head mounted in the conservatory, a trophy Eastman brought home from a safari in the 1920s. I wonder if PETA knows about this.

I think it goes without saying: Mr. Eastman was a bachelor. If Jeremy was a big game hunter, prizes like these would be displayed proudly in the garage.

The next day I drove to Brantford for a funeral. On Wednesday, one of my childhood friends passed away. Joe lived across the street from me until we moved when I was 9 years old. Being the same age, we played together a lot back then. Along with his brother Tim, we raced big wheels and reenacted scenes from Star Wars with their extensive collection of action figures. He was also my cousin’s cousin (I’ll pause here in case you need to sort though that) which made him like family, so even after we moved away I still saw him on special occasions.

For the people left behind, there is never a good time to check out, but at 35, Joe was far too young. He’d been in poor health right from birth. Problems with his heart had always left him weaker than most kids. He hid it well so most of us thought nothing of it – after all, he continued to grow up, just like the rest of us. Until last week. Seeing him laid to rest seemed surreal. “Did that really just happen?” my cousin who’d been sitting next to me at the funeral, asked me later that day, still in a state of disbelief. Sadly, it did.

Between the morning’s events and the heat wave rolling in, I was running on low power by Saturday afternoon, making the barbeque we attended later that day a bit a struggle.

These cupcake sliders, made by our friend Sheila, totally brightened my day though.

The company was great but I just wasn’t into it. We packed it in early and I spent the rest of the long weekend recharging for the week ahead.

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