Monday, September 19, 2011

Chez Moi.

How old do you think it is?
Not too sure.
That one? 
Couldn't tell you either.  

This was the oft-repeated and rarely satisfying exchange between my parents and I on road-trips.  As a child, I had a relentless fascination with decrepit old buildings.  I wanted to know the age of every crumpled grey barn we passed, and the story of each tired-looking farmhouse.  Maybe they didn’t even have one, and maybe I just read too much Little House on the Prairie, but my love affair with old spaces has endured to this day.  Now, I get to live in one. 

It’s not an abandoned farmhouse with its windows smashed in, but it’s still pretty great.  Two weeks ago I moved into a century-old house in Strathcona, Vancouver’s oldest neighbourhood.  I ponder the history of my home every single day, and feel satisfied each time I open its yellow front door.    

There are three of us in the house, plus a dear scruffy dog named Marsou.  My bedroom is small but lovely, with dental crown molding and a window overlooking Pender Street.  From it I watch people on the sidewalk below, and in this way I’ve come to learn how eclectic this area is. 

I still want desperately to know who lived here first, and what the sidewalk looked like then, but for now I’m just happy.  Happy to be in a home with creaks and quirks, and a kitchen that Laura Ingalls Wilder would have been happy baking pies in.   

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Saucy, Smokey Victory.

BBQ is serious.  Just ask Texas, or either one of the Carolinas.  Should you be farther north in Vancouver, ask the people of Re-Up BBQ, because they put on a very serious grill-fest last Sunday at The Waldorf.  

 If they had just called it for what it was, a meat marathon, my friends and I would have won gold.  We were all business, dedicating ourselves to five hours of pulled pork tacos, chili, smoked chicken, brisket, and ribs, pausing briefly to argue over salad vs. meat consumption and sigh with contentment.  I ate more meat in one evening than I usually do in a month, eliminating any chance of the doctor telling me I’m anemic for a good long while.


We sipped Tantalus Vineyard wines and swayed to some late summer tunes.  I can now cross Marathon: Meat or Otherwise off my bucket list, and credit the Re-Up BBQ team for this victory.  Thank you for helping me realize my potential.