Well, it’s been about two weeks since the move to Toronto and I’m pleased to report we have more or less settled in. We’ve met quite a few very nice people in that short time – also, a number of weirdoes. But I suppose that’s to be expected. Toronto is a bigger city. Also, unlike Vancouver, Akemi and I can’t simply live as recluses. Necessity forces us to go out, encounter others and, in some instances, interact with them. The fact that I’ll strike up a conversation with just about anybody helps (or hurts depending on the relative sanity of my impromptu conversation partner).
The dogs have also settled into a nice little routine that includes four daily visits to the local dog park where Jelly leaves her stroller to get in her short walks, Bubba does his best to avoid contact with other dogs, and Lulu stubbornly refuses to return home until she has visited the dog run where she too ignores the other pooches in favor of begging their owners for attention.
I do miss Darlene and the gang at The Book Warehouse in Toronto. I’ve checked out a couple of the local book stores and have left underwhelmed. The sole exception is Bakka-Phoenix Books (84 Harbord Street), a terrific shop specializing in genre fiction. I spent a good half hour chatting with the staff while Akemi sat patiently by, endlessly perusing an illustrated Miyazaki book.
Even though I vowed to stick to digital versions while here in Toronto, I couldn’t help myself and picked up a selection made up of staff member Leah’s recommendations and some titles that caught my eye:
Presently reading Norman Lear’s Even This I Get to Experience. Just finished – and loved – the first volume of Brian K. Vaughn’s Saga, recommended to me by Prodigy Pictures Development Wunderkind Nat Cooper. I swung by The Silver Snail and picked up volumes 2 and 3 yesterday. And also brought home a bunch of other comic books and graphic novels Natalie sent me home with on Friday, among them Buzzkill by Donny Cates that I thought was pretty darn terrific as well. Speaking of comic book, it looks like it’ll be trade paperbacks only moving forward as Marvel has apparently wrapped up (canceled?) the only two single issue series I was collecting: The Thunderbolts and the awesome Superior Foes of Spiderman. 🙁
The eating, meanwhile, has been good. WAY to good. Some of the highlights –
The crispy prawn rice rolls at Luckee in the Soho Met. I don’t even like rice rolls but thought these were great. I’m not a huge fan of some of the entrees, but their dim sum menu items are uniformly great.
The sautéed sweetbreads at Le Neuf Cafe (9 Clarence Square) which, by the way, makes the best desserts in town – everything from salted caramel eclairs to their tiny chouquettes that Akemi has become addicted to and now picks up on almost a daily basis.
Wahlburgers (A Mark Wahlberg burger joint, 46 Blue Jays Way) opened her recently and I checked out their promising-sounding Thanksgiving Burger. The patty was flavorful but the stuffing and roasted butternut squash were decidedly not. The side of sweet potato tots (Actually made from yams. For some reason, people in Toronto don’t know the difference between a yam and a sweet potato) was disquietingly sweet. Everyone else in line ordered the signature Our Burger. Maybe I’ll order that next time. Or just go Burger’s Priest which I’ve been meaning to do.
After stocking up at the St. Lawrence Market this morning, we returned home where I made myself a bacon sandwich using two types of bacon (back bacon and peameal), Bourgogne cheese, and micro greens.
Tonight, we head out to a special event dinner at a local Italian eatery that is hosting a special guest chef from Vancouver: none other than our buddy Chef Robert Belcham (Fuel, Refuel, Fat Dragon, Camapagnolo, Campagnolo Roma). I will, of course, report back.
16 thoughts on “November 1, 2014: Settling in!”
I’m so glad to hear that the dogs are settling in well, and being back their old selves. Love the pictures!
As promised, here’s a pic of my friends’ new dog, Riley! He’s definitely a puppy, all feet, teeth and boundless energy. He’s a real sweet dog, though.
I love those descriptions of your dogs. Also, Jelly is adorable in her little coat!
Good food porn too! Thanks for taking the time to post.
Glad to hear you guys are getting a routine! The food looks amazing.
Love Tanya Huff!
Very good to see everyone getting back to normal! Will you still take those four trips a day to the dog park during the dead of winter? Burrrrrrr!
@ gforce – That is a CUTE dog!!!
Glad to hear that you’re getting into a more normal routine. The pups look great! The meals look fabulous, as usual. But I can’t figure out how you can still find time to be reading with all the work there is to do on the show. Amazing.
Today was my last day in Vancouver-ish. I haven’t said it much up here for fear of being smacked, but I’ve been loving the rain. We haven’t had more than five inches in the last year and a half in SoCal, and it’s been miserably hot. I had a great time with friends, and even the hotel staff have been fun. I’m starting my drive back on Sunday, and should be back home on Monday. Bummer 🙁
(Actually made from yams. For some reason, people in Toronto don’t know the difference between a yam and a sweet potato)
that seems to be a problem all over.
Hi Joe I saw this on fb and thought of you it is similar to that email reply you did before to that scammer it was awhile ago you did that sorry if I am being too random https://sftimes.s3.amazonaws.com/7/7/8/4/7784eb923ad19a842a9d173fc8f21f8d.jpg
glad you are doing good and you are doing a show you developed happy for you I am ok for the most part still trying to write like I know I can just need to get over my fear and obstacles I put in my way I am very good at that putting obstacles in my way I still miss Stargate it’s funny I am the SG equivalent to Star Trek’s Anti JJ people and Star Wars’ EU people who who are pissed at George Lucas and Disney or BSG GINO people I will not pay money for that new trilogy if it makes it to a trilogy that’s another story if I see it in the theaters there will be much bribery involved.
Just took home First Fifteen. (Currently reading Captain Blood – Sabatini.) I miss you too.
I hate you because you have instant access to Peameal Bacon….that is all…;)
@paloosa: safe travels. And I like rain, too.
I’m glad you and Akemi and the pups are getting settled in; change is hard. And it’s nice that one of your favorite chefs came out to Toronto just to cook for you! 😉 From the look of the food in those pictures, it seems you’ve found some pretty good restaurants (except for the unfortunate tater tots) so we won’t have to worry about you wasting away to nothing.
@gforce: I second Ponytails comment: that really is one cute dog!
I would never think of you as a recluse. You go out to eat, buy books, go to local festivals and you talk to people. I don’t think your a recluse.
I read The Martian, I really enjoyed it. I’m looking forward to his next novel.
Good news you have settled in.
I like your bacon sandwich looks very appetizing. And the dogs matched almost perfectly in the new town.
When you say ironically I bought a small selection of books, You’re shameless. 😀
Riley does look like a cute dog yep. I know this may sound odd saying this, but you can tell by the picture that he looks friendly.
“The Martian” from Andy Weir is a terrific book! And its not about an alien, but about an austronaut left behind on the surface of mars after a 6 month misson is about to leave for earth. Its a really great book! Really technical and “realistic” to say the least. Highly recommended
You know what outfit Anna wears? Didn’t know you were such a Frozen fan. I’ve seen a couple of episodes of Wahlburgers and always wondered if they were any good. Bacon sandwich looks good. Love the puppy pictures, and @gforce Riley is adorable, too.