Monday, June 29, 2009

Time away, part 2: Ontario

So, the second part of our time away took place in various towns in the southwestern region of Ontario. What I would have really loved to have done was to ignore all family obligations and gone to Canada's Wonderland. Seriously. I love roller coasters and there isn't much of that sort of thing around here.

Ontario: Saturday, June 17th to Wednesday, June 20th

Our flight arrived on time at Pearson International Airport on Saturday morning. We whizzed through customs (I'm always a little nervous after a particularly bad experience crossing the boarder a few years ago) and were one of the first to pick up our luggage. We had just enough time to call Andrew's parents to figure out who was picking us up and for me to run to the washroom before Margaret arrived. Margaret, by the way, is now 7 months pregnant. We hadn't seen her since Christmas when it wasn't known that she was expecting, so there was a little bit of disconnect between when we'd seen her last and now, very "great with child."

After being picked up we drove into Toronto to visit with John and his girlfriend, Cindy before heading to the Bowmanville area to attend Carl (uncle to Andrew) and Diane's wedding. Unfortunately it rained on Saturday and it was rather chilly making it not the most ideal wedding weather. The wedding, however, was very nice. The service was simple (did you know God is Awesome?) but nice and the reception took place almost immediately afterward at Carl and Diane's gorgeous house (it's a huge one story bungalow). Dinner was a causal affair starting out with various salads (potato, pasta, Cesar etc) and a wide assortment of grilled meats (and fish). Sometimes I find gatherings of Andrew's family a little overwhelming. Everyone is very nice and there's lots of exuberant conversation, but being a natural introvert after a few hours I find the noise tiring. I rarely see my cousins and it's been several years since the last time all my aunts, uncles and cousins were together in the same room and even then, we don't interact in the same lively manner as the Fischers do.

On Sunday the entire family attended mass in Waterloo then enjoyed a Father's Day lunch of cold salads. Cards and gifts were exchanged before everyone but Andrew and I returned to Toronto--Margaret was flying back to Victoria, BC, and John and Cindy were to go back to their apartment. Andrew and I had a brief opportunity to visit with friends and their 2 month old son before being picked up by my brother Matthew and carted off to Huntingford where my parents live. Since no visit home is really a visit without running around at a crazy, break neck speed, after dinner we headed back to Kitchener to catch up with friends over a pint at The Whale and Ale. Whew. That's all for Sunday.

Monday began around 8:30 a.m. giving me just enough time to shower and dress and get down to Waterloo Town Square by 9:30 a.m. to meet up with Josh, who I hadn't seen since Christmas 2007. We took our time chatting over breakfast (for me, a cappuccino and a chocolate biscuit-type thing). Afterward I caught a bus back to Kitchener and stopped in at the mall where I picked up a couple of pairs of capries (it was screaming hot in Ontario and I only had one skirt to wear) and new sandals (my old Merrell sandals tore up my feet while I was in New York) and made it back to Andrew's parents' place just a few minutes after 12:00 p.m. After lunch I prepared a couple of potluck offerings for a meeting with my nursing friends (commonly referred to as "the Ladies") in Guelph. We had a delightful dinner with far more food than we could possibly eat. Its always nice to get together with the Ladies, they're the only good thing that came out of my nursing degree.

Tuesday. Tuesday was my mother's birthday. I started out the day by going for a run. I probably only ran about 35 minutes, but I was absolutely exhausted (probably related the humidity, which is absent in Alberta). Then I had to track down Andrew who was visiting with his grandmother (who lives 5 minutes walking distance away). I sat with them and chatted for another half an hour before I insisted that we needed to get going. I'd promised to make my mother a birthday cake and I needed enough time to get to my parents' place to complete my baking task. The cake baking and decorating went off smoothly. My brother Stephen, my sister-in-law Michelle and their son Alexander arrived shortly before dinner, which we ate out on the back porch. After dinner pictures were scheduled to take place with the whole family. I was worried this was going to be a drawn out and painful process, but it turn out not so bad. My mom's cousin David, who's a professional photographer, came out to take pictures.

Finally, Wednesday, our last day, was definitely our slowest day. I woke up before Andrew and after breakfast headed out for a run around the concession (probably around 8 km). It was a nice day, sunny, lots of blue sky and already hot by 9:30 a.m. I had a real problem with sunscreen running into my eyes. By the time I got back from my run Andrew was up. We didn't really do anything of note for the rest of the day. We both read to pass the time until we had to drive back to Kitchener to return the car we'd borrowed. We sat around a little longer at Andrew's parents' place until my parents arrived (they were returning us to the airport).

And that's it. That was our time away. Short, compact and now mercifully over. Andrew and I have now mostly recovered. Our colds (Andrew's hit on the Monday, mine not until we got back to Edmonton) are almost gone. Tabitha seems happy to have us home (she was expertly cared for by Lisa). Our lives are mostly back to normal.



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