Canada, week 8

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Oh man, is it time for another update again?  It’s totally time for another update again!

I don’t know about all of you, but this week has just flown by for me.  And it’s been one packed week, too, so without further ado:

The Paper Street Journal knows how to do Halloween.  I’ll admit it, I wanted to go to this shindig almost entirely so I could bust out my Phryne Fisher costume:

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But the party itself was great too!  They got some super-talented bands to perform; GREY \\ WATER reminds me of the xx in the best way possible, and Edgar Breau was so delightfully folksy that he made me miss Oklahoma something fierce.  They rented out the Staircase Theater on Dundurn, this amazing vintage theater.  (I may or may not have briefly played the piano in the theater proper…)  Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures, and the lighting wouldn’t have been good anyway, but you can bet I’ll be back in the future.

The Dap-Queen:  I won a free ticket to see a screening of Miss Sharon Jones! on Saturday night, as part of the Art Gallery of Hamilton’s film festival.  They screened the film at Collective Arts Brewing, so y’know, I got to sit in the middle of a working brewery.  That was pretty cool.  The movie itself was even more emotionally brutal than I’d been bracing for–I knew Sharon Jones had had cancer, but they showed her going through chemo several times, so my wimpy needlephobic self had to look away from the screen on a couple occasions.  But the music was phenomenal, and Sharon herself is a force of nature on stage.  She’s so dynamic.  Even if she weren’t wearing the hippest, most sparkly dresses known to humankind at every show, your eyes would still be drawn to her.

I think the most moving scene for me was when she went to church, still in the throes of chemo, and felt compelled to get up and belt a gospel song and dance like she did at her concerts.  Her feet were going a mile a minute, and afterwards she sat down and just gasped for breath for a solid minute.  I felt so viscerally how badly she wanted to dance, so when she finally sat back down again, I was almost gasping along with her.

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Buffer Festival:  There were so many great screenings and panels at Buffer, and I only wish I could have gone to more of them.  But alas, things cost money and things are expensive, so I only ended up going to the LGBT+ screening on Sunday.  It was 500% worth it–the quality of filmmaking on display was fantastic, and the panelists themselves were all so cool.  I went in only knowing Kaitlyn Alexander, but I came out wanting to check out everybody else’s YouTube channels.

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Before the panel.

I rode my first Canadian train!  The Gardiner Expressway was closed for maintenance this weekend, meaning I had to take my normal Hamilton-Toronto bus to the Aldershot train station, figure out how trains worked in a right hurry (sue me, it’s been over four years since I went to England), and take a train to Union Station.  It was kind of slow going, actually–I definitely like the bus better.

Coffee:  Durand Coffee is a bit of a walk down Caroline Street.  I first went there when it was raining outside, so I was a little miserable and my TOMS were a lot soaked by the time I got there,* but I loved the place nonetheless.  The decor is gorgeous, for one thing.

I want to go there someday when I don’t have homework or grading to worry about and just spend a day reading the books they have on their shelves.

Coffee-wise, I had something they call an “autumn spice latte”–cinnamon and nutmeg, very reminiscent of Finch on Locke’s cinnamon brown butter latte from two weeks ago.  Deeeeeeeee-lish.  10/10 would recommend.

*Side note, please remind me NEVER to wear TOMS outside when I know it’s raining.  I have no idea why I always do this to myself.

Food:  I hit up Maki My Way, on King St., with a friend before Buffer on Sunday.  It’s a sushi place with remarkably fast service–I got my rainbow roll maybe five minutes after I ordered it.  I’d never tried a rainbow roll before, so I can’t really comment on the quality of this specific rainbow roll as compared to Yokozuna or something, but it’s definitely something I’ll get again.

Also, I got fried tofu for an appetizer, and it was heavenly.  (I feel like that’s the most American thing I could have possibly ordered off that menu, but it’s whatever.)

Bonus:  This week you get another installment of Grad School Kitchen!  Our special guests are the packets of tamarind sauce I got with frozen chicken samosas.  I didn’t use the sauce for the samosas, but there was no way I was going to waste it (I’ve gotten WAY weirder about not eating food I bought in the last couple months), so I’ve been putting it in other stuff.

An Incomplete List of Things That Are Bettered by the Addition of Tamarind Sauce:

  • chicken noodle soup
  • ramen
  • scrambled eggs

I plan to add it to poutine later this week.  Will report back.

Music:  Guess what I’m going to put here.  Just guess.

Also, this one’s just plain catchy.

See y’all next week!

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