It feels as if I was just packing for this trip and here I am home again! Bill and I had a fabulous time in Toronto. First and foremost it was a delight to have a 3rd annual "Spring Fling" with our dear friends Loes and Theo van der Heijden from the Netherlands. Second, it was wonderful to get out of the pre-seasonal Florida heat. It was over 100°F on our front porch the day before we left. We visited all the local touristy spots, Casa Loma (charming), Chinatown (colorful), the CN tower (very tall), Niagara Falls (magnificent), etc. We enjoyed a fabulous dinner, grilled by my favorite Beamish boy at his lovely home along with his delightful wife, 2 beautiful daughters, his spit-n-image son and his charming father. Who knew Greg could cook!?!
The first day we bought tickets for the hop-on-hop-off double decker bus and harbor cruise. It was cold and windy and we were freezing! The second day, prepared for the cold, we set out for Chinatown and the CN Tower and it was hot. The weather kept on in that fashion, always catching us unprepared for either the heat or the cold. It didn't dampen our fun in any way, though.
A Busman's Holiday
: a holiday spent in following or observing the practice of one's usual occupation
On Monday we had lunch with Monica Anderton a machine embroidery colleague from almost the very beginning. Monica's designs were some of the first in the Design Exchange (now our Free Designs section). So much water has passed under the bridge. It was great to get together to reminisce about the "good old days" and catch up with what we've all been up to recently. After lunch we all walked to the Royal Ontario Museum. What a wonderful place! First we headed to the Patricia Harris Gallery of Textiles & Costume, a diverse international collection of costume and textiles, including Chinese imperial court garments, early Islamic textiles, Western fashion from the 18th century to the present, and early Canadian textiles.
Another day we drove to St. Jacobs where there was a quilt festival. What serendipity! Everywhere we went there seemed to be something going on having to do with clothing and textiles. Anyway, the most striking thing we saw in St. Jacobs was a quilt car cover. I can't imagine how long it too to fit and measure, not to mention sew, the thing. It was amazing! The car quilt was made by Judy Taylor, pieced and quilted with left over quilt blocks that are sometimes called "orphan blocks" or "UFO's" (unfinished objects). It was sewn together with 33,000 metres (1,287,000 inches) of thread. The car is fully driveable when dressed in the quilt and it has appeared in several parades.Can you imagine?!?
A little too comfy?
Our last stop on Thursday was to visit Greg in his office. He looks a little too comfortable there, don't you think? Perhaps he doesn't have enough to do. While in Greg's office I got to talk to Pat on the phone. This Internet is truly a remarkable vehicle. Here I am in Orlando, Pat in San Diego, Cathy in Portland, Greg in Toronto and you all all over the world, yet we come together here with no borders, no feeling of any distance between us. I'm constantly amazed.
Escorted out of my own country!!
On our way from Niagara Falls to Niagara-on-the-Lake, Theo's GPS unit took us across the bridge into the US. There was no way to turn around and go back. So, we had to cross the border. Our passports were collected and we had to get out of the car and go into the border control building. After cooling our heels for a while, Loes and Theo were called into a room. A short while later they came out with a smiling homeland security officer. Everything was okay, of course. But this officer stayed with us until we were safely in the car and pointed back to Canada. As we were walking I said to him, "This is something, being escorted out of my own country." He replied, "You're leaving of your own choice." To which I replied, "Yes, but you're escorting me!" It was pretty funny, even if it didn't seem that way at the time. The GPS unit, fondly called "James" because of its British accent and impeccable manners was sent to time out. Naughty James!
Who is this Rogers guy and why is his name on everything?
As we flew out of Toronto I was left with one burning question: Who is this Rogers guy and why is his name on everything? From the first time I turned on my cell phone when we landed and his name appeared on the screen until the last day when we passed the Rogers Centre on our way to the airport, I don't think an hour went by when we weren't seeing the name "Rogers" somewhere. What's the deal?
So, that's my story, and I'm sticking to it. Now to unpack, do some laundry and settle back in at home. TTYL!