Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Post-Christmas Sleep Fest

wThis is the third time I've tried writing this post. It's probably going to end up shorter than I'd originally intended.

It wasn't until Friday that I felt as though I was ready for the holidays to begin. By the time I got in through the door on Friday afternoon, I'd finished most of my shopping and was ready to start packing for my flight that evening. About an hour after I got in, I received a call from Air Canada letting me know that my flight to Toronto had been cancelled due to freezing rain.

Try as I might, I was unable to reschedule for another flight that evening. Fortunately, it turned out that I was covered by CIBC's trip delay insurance. This meant that I'd have $500 to spend on food and accommodation. Living in Ottawa, it meant that I had $500 for food (both solid and liquid) that had to be spent in five hours, lest it be taken away from me.

I was fortunate enough to get ahold of Jake, and 45 minutes later we were properly suited up and in a cab bound for Hy's Steakhouse. After five hours and numerous steaks, lobsters, and scotches, we were within $20 of our goal.

I awoke five hours later, and was mildly surprised to learn that I was absolutely hammered. My flight left in two hours, and I had yet to pack or finish wrapping presents. After a very comical 20 minutes worth of staggering and stuffing, I found myself in the back of a cab, bound for the airport.

I've often said that there are few things as wonderful as slowly getting drunk during a good meal. Well, there are few things quite so horrible as slowly sobering up in an airport line-up.

The flight to Toronto passed without incident, and I had a lovely day with Andrea and her family. Our kittens are doing well, and with the exception of a small unfortunate incident (which shall be blogged about later), they are recuperating quite well from their special operations.

Andrea was kind enough to drive me back to the airport early on Christmas Eve, and from there I flew to Calgary. We had a lovely Christmas, and the whole family was there, including my niece, sisters, and their husbands. Sophie's getting very big these days, and is incredibly cute. She's still not very talkative, but she is very sharp and learns very quickly. We spent this afternoon playing hide-and-seek, and took a trip to a nearby park.

I have no real plans for the next few days, apart from sleeping late, reading books, listening to music and going for walks. I'm excited about visiting with a few buddies, and spending some time with the fam. It's nice to have a vacation where there's no real schedule that needs to be followed. The two priorities for this trip are to visit the Cattle Baron and the Willow Park Liquor store, which has one of the best scotch selections in the world.

Sunday, December 10, 2006


I turned 26 this past Saturday. It was a really good birthday - we kept things low-key, had a couple of nice meals, and generally took the weekend as a chance to rest up after an otherwise eventful couple of weeks. It looks as though I'm going to get to bed at a reasonable hour tonight, which would be a nice way to start off the new week.

26 is just a bit of a weird birthday. I'm not going to rant and rave about getting older, but it does feel a bit strange to see my late twenties looming in the immediate future. I don't feel old, but I am now the age that I once regarded as ancient. It's just surprising how fast time goes, you know? Like when you were younger, and waiting an hour for something seemed like an eternity, but now weeks can pass in the blink of an eye.

Personally, I'm a fan of the Perry Bible Fellowship comic on the subject of birthdays.

The First Annual Gentlemen's Weekend at the Cottage was excellent. Plenty of meat and beer were consumed by all, and I was introduced to the Settlers of Cataan. Excellent game, and one that I'll need to pick up myself before too much longer.

Also, for anyone who has not seen the extra features at the end of Team America: World Police, then you need to see them. Watch the movie right now, and then watch the extra features. You can thank me later.

Not much else is new, other than that. Recently finished the Mohammad Yunus book "Banker to the Poor", and hope to get through the stack of books that I still haven't read, dating all the way back to last Christmas. Im hoping to get some time in with Mr. Tom Robbins or perhaps Mr. Neil Stephenson once the holidays roll around.

Speaking of which, I'm presently looking forward to a three-stopover nightmare on Christmas Eve. Saving some money and booking the trip on points seemed like a good idea at the time, but we'll see how that actually works out for me. I could be writing a post on the 26th describing how best to enjoy your holidays when stranded in Thunder Bay.