We kicked off this busier-than-usual weekend by attending a party hosted by one of Akemi’s friends.  Yes!  Akemi has friends here in Vancouver.  It may not seem like a big deal but it is when one considers that Akemi is more  of a homebody whose outings are limited to the hourly English classes she attends every weekday.  It’s there that she has made quite a few friends, most of whom have already gone back to Japan – or will eventually return to Japan.  Her pal, Hazuki, who looks like she may be around for a while, invited us over for a steak and sushi soiree.

Hazuki and Akemi
Hazuki and Akemi

It was quite a turnout – about fifteen people in all.  We feasted, watched the Canucks lose in overtime, and I regaled everyone with my elementary-level Japanese.  Then, a little after 10:00 p.m., we called it a night.  Yeah, I know.  That’s Carl-Binder-early!  It’s funny that whenever I line up the pros and cons of having kids, one of the negatives has always been the fear of being anchored.  No impromptu travel plans or long nights out for parents!  Or, ironically, dog owners. Instead of “We can’t go to Paris and leave the kids at home!” it’s “We can’t go to Tokyo and leave the dogs at home!” or, if you do end up taking that trip it’s not “I wonder how the kids are doing?” but “I wonder how the dogs are doing?”.  The other night, it wasn’t “We’ve got to get back home to the kids.” but “We’ve got to get back home to take the dogs out!”.  Even though we’re not THOSE PEOPLE, we’re THOSE PEOPLE.

It was a beautiful weekend, so what did we do?  Well, we went to the park.

The dog park of course…

Akemi and Bubba out on a date.
Akemi and Bubba out on a date.
An exhausted Jelly and Lulu catch a lift instead.
An exhausted Jelly and Lulu catch a lift instead.

And, really, nothing says summer like desserts.  This weekend, we visited two of our favorite sweet spots:

First, we dropped by Cadeaux Bakery –

Foret Vert: chocolate euphoria cake, pistachio mousse, sour cherries, and chocolate mousse.
Peaut Butter Parker Cake: Chocolate cookie crust, peanut butter mousse, and a chocolate glaze topped with caramelized peanuts.

Then we swung by Beta 5 to check out this month’s offerings –

Matcha and strawberry cream puff with strawberry icing
Early Grey and raspberry cream puff

And part of May’s Mad Hatter’s Tea Party theme…

Hookah Smoking Caterpillar: Tobacco ganache, whisky caramel, and smoked tea chocolates.
Queen of Hearts Polygon Bar: Freeze-dried raspberries blended with white chocolate and candied Earl Grey tea.  One bite and Akemi declared Beta 5 owner (and bar creator) Adam “a genius”.
Hedgehogs: caramelized locally-grown hazelnuts coated in layers of milk chocolate praline, milk and dark chocolates.
Hedgehogs: caramelized locally-grown hazelnuts coated in layers of milk chocolate praline, milk and dark chocolates.

Also on the menu this month: The Happy Un-Birthday Cake Candy Bar (lemon sablee cookie sandwich, elderflower marshmallow and rhubarb jelly coated with 63% dark chocolate) and the Mad As A Hatter matcha and Yuzu-Infused Caramels.

The weekend was going swimmingly.  Then, late this morning, we brought our pug Bubba in to get his bandage changed.  He’s been on the mend since suffering a nasty paw injury (read all about it here: April 27, 2013: Bubba’s Bad Day! and here: April 30, 2013: Bubba on the mend! Entertaining cousin Evelina!).  The vet re-examined the the damaged nail and delivered the grim news: it wasn’t healing properly.  Bubba would have to undergo surgery.  My poor boy! So we left him there and picked him up six hours later…

Bubba's sports the cone of shame.  Also note the summery bandage.
Bubba’s sports the cone of shame. Also note the summery bandage.

Curiously, I dreamt about Bubba last night – dreamt that something bad happened to him.  And, as it turned out, something bad DID happen to him.  Prophetic?  Maybe.  Last week, I dreamt that the non-genre pilot under network consideration was greenlit to series. Prophetic?  Definitely!

29 thoughts on “May 5, 2013: Parties, parks, sweets, and surgery!

  1. Poor sweet Bubba. Hopefully he is on his way to recovery now with his paw. Give him a smoochie kiss for me.

  2. Wishing Bubba a speedy recovery! Wait…did you just confirm that the non-genre pilot was greenlit????

  3. So sorry about Bubba.
    Food looked superb, especially the hedgehogs!
    I never considered being tied down to kids as “tied down” but joyful responsibility. I think it is wise when people who don’t feel that way don’t have them. Everyone doesn’t have to be a parent, own a pet, be married. Oh how wise it is to know what you are best at. (Yeah I should have avoided the married part personally. 🙂 )

  4. Oh, poor Bubba! My girl Sadie only just got rid of her cone of shame — after SIX WEEKS of having to endure it! (Or more. I kinda lost track, it was so bloody long.) She had an inflamed eyelid, caused by… absolutely nothing at all. She, too, had to have surgery; the pathology report, which we were expecting to say “hemangioma” (only a little bit bad) or “hemangiosarcoma” (really, REALLY bad), came back basically with “I have no idea what the hell is causing this”. So the ophthalmologist just threw a bunch of drugs at it. Thankfully, the “kitchen sink” strategy worked. All better!!! Wishing Bubba the same luck in his recovery.

    P.S. – Slavita at Cadeaux did our wedding cake. Loved it, and love her!

  5. Speedy recovery..Bubba. 🙂 Bubba…if the nail had to be removed, I know what that’s like. 🙁 Several years ago, I had a job injury to my left hand, and my left pinky-fingernail had to be surgically removed. An xray taken weeks later showed a broken fingertip. Painful. As the doctor was suturing the nailbed, she commented on how healthy all my nailbeds were. The nail grew back in 6 months. During that time, I had difficulty using a keyboard.

  6. yes, i see that Bubba is increasingly restrained! lol good on you Bubba! that’s the spirit! rebel boy 🙂
    No worries after over 4 years of Japanese studies.. I am still at elementary level! lol a long long way 🙂 ! best of luck Joe 🙂 it is so worth it though 🙂
    Oh… and i am so with you on…. we have to go home mind the pets kind of thing.. my partner and i cannot even go on holidays together because of it.. so imagine! hard enough to get away for a few days.. 🙂
    hugs to Akemi and all the family 🙂

  7. Poor Bubba!!

    You know what would make Bubba…and ALL of us…feel so much better, Joey? If you, out of pure parental sympathy, wore a cone of shame, too.

    To put it in the immortal words of PG-15…Do it. DoitDoitDoitDoitDoitDoitDoit.

    Ya know, I really miss that kid.


  8. How in the world did I manage to post that without a single smilie?? 😕 I must be slipping. 😛


  9. Hey wait. What? Yeah, did you just confirm that the non-genre show had gotten the go ahead? If so, yay!

    Poor Bubba. I hope all goes well with the nail.

  10. Poor baby Bubba, lots and lots of pug hugs for you! You have a great nurse to help you on the mend. Hope you can ditch the cone soon. That doggy buggy has paid for itself tenfold by now. Thanks for the dessert pictures. cake and pie,,yummo.
    Green lit is good, dreams,,spooky when they do happen, hope it is some smooth….oooooo, sailing for u, dream on.. 😉

  11. Gotta love Jelly and Lulu in the stroller. I’m surprised that with his paw, Bubba wasn’t there too. Your last line about definitely prophetic dreams…you’re such a tease!

  12. Hugs for Bubba!

    Hedgehogs, yes. Tobacco genache? No thank you. But I surely need to bake something, my tummy is growling at the lovely food.

    The beauty of having cats is they entertain each other, poop in a box, and I can pay someone to drop in once a day to feed the old ladies, pet the boys, and scoop the litter.

  13. We have the same issue when headed to our campground. The wife and I are free to go if our son has to work the weekend. That means he can care for Brandi. (YAY!) But if he’s off and decides to go with us, we have to procure a dog sitter. We would love to take Brandi with us, but she does not play well with other dogs. No doubt due to her abuse when she was growing up.

    Sorry to hear about Bubba. But at least he will be 100% soon.

    Joe, if you wouldn’t mind prophesying that I’m going to win the next record Power Ball lottery, that would be great. K? K.

  14. So sorry to hear about Bubba having the surgery. Who says that dogs don’t register emotion on their faces. Bubba does not look happy at all.

    It was a beautiful weekend in the Ottawa area and we finally were able to celebrate our anniversary with a great filet mignon at the Crazy Horse in Kanata. Then on Sunday we had our first Dairy Queen of the season – even the fur ball…. I know this sounds pretty tame compared to what you are used to, but it was a great weekend.

  15. Poor Bubba! “You are only as happy as your unhappiest child.” Or in your case, the dog.

    I loved the pictures of Akemi. Her friend is very beautiful too. Is Vancouver a big travel destination for the Japanese?

    Bubba sure has taken a shine to Akemi. You can’t let her go now or you will have to send Bubba too.

    Please give Bubba hugs from all of us and I hope he doesn’t have to wear the cone for long.

    The food pictures were so delicious looking. I’m still drooling over the cherry mousse cake. The caterpillar doesn’t sound as appealing to me. Did you try that one? Tobacco ganache….no, still sounds like an ashtray.

  16. Only do that dogs care for children until the children take care of the dogs. 😆

    Bubba is taking it with quite resignation from what I see. Good boy¡

  17. @Last week, I dreamt that the non-genre pilot under network consideration was greenlit to series. Prophetic? Definitely!

    Here’s hoping!

    That said, I’m done assigning logic to dreams. Some make no sense lol. Years ago I once had a dream for a few nights that was pretty much the same, that I was walking around on an island paradise and it was possibly the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen, or my mind could ever imagine but it was so calm and peaceful. Never did dream of it again, but It was a nice dream lol

  18. Also, hope Bubba gets better soon. As the old saying goes, things can only get worse before they get better.

  19. Bubbsy! Get better soon. We want to see your eyes smile again. 🙂

    So good to see Akemi enjoying herself with friends.

    😯 Oh, the desserts. Good thing there are zero calories just for looking at them. Joe, still don’t understand how you are still so skinny. Maybe Das has a theory. 😀

    Cherluvya — Loved your photo. Hysterical. The Cone of Shame filled with puppy toys — while being word. Terrific photo. Did you say you moved recently? Where to?

    gforce — That map was hilarious! Laughed several times, and had to hunt up a wiki map of the provinces to match up with descriptions, being south of the border and all. Good fun. 😀

  20. I’ve given a lot of thought to your comment about the pro’s and con’s of having kids, and the comparison with owning dogs.

    Yes, dogs are a big responsibility but they are generally better behaved than kids. You can leave them in kennels or with a sitter while you go away for basically as long as you like, plus if they misbehave you can pick them up and carry them indoors. Try that with a teenager!

    I totally agree with Debra from the South. Either you are one of those folks who is desperate to have a child, and willing to put them first in all things – or not.

    Children are a life time responsibility that doesn’t stop at 16 or 18. From what I’ve learned from watching my friends with kids, babies are the easiest stage. A baby pee’s, poops and cries. Yes they can/will keep you awake at night, but so does a young adult who’s gone out clubbing, or who’s decided to stay at the house of a boyfriend/girlfriend without telling you. And don’t get me started on the expense! My niece and nephew have to have the newest of everything as soon as it comes out.

    Having said that if you truly want kids, none of these things matters. Just be truthful with yourself Joe. Not wanting children doesn’t make you a bad person…just an honest one. My advice – which you probably don’t want – is to decide what’s right for you. Once you bring a child into the world, there’s no going back. You can’t hand it into a shelter like an unwanted puppy.

  21. @das. I’ll ask PG15 to stop by. We are Facebook friends.

    Poor baby Bubba. In that first picture I was about to say that it doesn’t look like he needs tramadol at all–all he needs is to be near Akemi to soothe his pain. I am so sorry he had to have surgery. I am sorry I am so late getting caught up. If it is the news that is the hardest for me is when I see I have missed something serious like something wrong with you, Akemi, your family or the fur kids.

    As far as deciding to have children or not, it is a very personal decision and there is no right or wrong reply. But as far as being locked down, I don’t think that is the case. Alaina Huffman is amazing in this regard. For me, traveling with Patrick is so intensely complicated it is not even funny. Sometimes kids adapt to the way their parents’ lifestyle is. Sometimes the lifestyle has to adapt to the child. There is no predictability measure on what that might be, however. My oldest sister never had children. She is a nurse and I think she would have been a good mother, but she likes her lifestyle, being able to just go whenever she wanted. She has a dog that is her child and that dog goes everywhere with her, even to work, on trips (and she drives so she can bring her with her).

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