A Travellerspoint blog

Week 19

Wednesday was a bit of excitement. A gigantic sinkhole occurred down Rideau! It was so big it even made the NZ Stuff news. A few people from back home messaged to check if I was OK. Its less than 1 km away from our apartment so pretty close and we go over it twice a day to get to work. A whole van fell in so it was lucky that no one was hurt. They are constructing the light rail system throughout the city and underground construction was what caused the upset.
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Cute fabrics – cactuses and high tea!
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This is what Canadians think is a “meat pie”! Not a bad price though.. still wasn’t game enough to try one.
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Wednesday night Stephanie and Sylvain took us out to dinner at a Thai restaurant. It might possibly be the lightest and freshest and most delicious chicken cashew I have ever sampled! Sylvain is on our course and his partner is also Navy. Thank you for the birthday present and for looking after us in Canada!
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Thursday night the birthday prep started at my favourite Salon Niccio with George and Chadi, the Lebanese brothers. They gave me a lovely bottle of shampoo for my birthday. Such sweethearts and they still think Im a pilot! So short!!!
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Lots of baking throughout the week, getting rid of the baking supplies and making treats to fill up the containers that I borrowed for their return! The bosses were stoked.
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Friday I turned 25! Lots of birthday treats, snaps, cards, pressies, messages and food. Made the guys pose for a birthday selfie. Its like hurding cats to get us all together for a shot.
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Gem and I booked in for a special treat to get our makeup done at Mac. Makeup here is so reasonable and makeovers are free! But as if I could leave the Mac counter empty handed… Our makeup was cancelled during the week due to the sinkhole as all the water was turned off in the Rideau Centre and businesses were banned from the Public Health board of doing any makeovers due to the lack of water. However within hours of being cancelled it was back on, bottled water could be used!
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Birthday dinner out at Cornerstone restaurant in the Byward Market.
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We got our final Ground test marks at dinner, facebooked through by the tutors. They were working late and wanted to let us have a good final weekend. We all passed – the hardest test too! The highest average for a long time they told us. We all sat round waiting for our phones to go off so we could see what each other got.

Delicious chicken and goat cheese salad with sundried cherries. I got delivered a free birthday skillet brownie!!!!!!! Yum.
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I loved my Makeup - thanks Shannon from MAC Nordstrom Rideau!
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Saturday Emma Davis picked me up and we headed out to the Westboro Farmers Market. Lots of cute stalls, the best was the pulled pork buns – my bun was swapped for additional “killer slaw” so fresh and yum!
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We went and checked out Diefenbunker (Canada’s Cold War Museum) which was a great outing. It was a huge underground, mulitlevel facility built for if a nuclear attack ever occurred in Canada. We downloaded the app and did the audio tour.
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Next Emma took me to the Ottawa Wild Bird Care Centre as she is very passionate about birds and wildlife. We got to see a huge range of birds at the hospital, set in such a tranquil setting.
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We bought some seed and lured in the chipmunks and squirrels. I got to feed a squirrel out of my hand and even touch its tail!!!! The best. This squirrel chased us. Well chased Emma. She wa90_IMG_9689.jpg90_IMG_9698.jpg90_IMG_9707.jpgs great at attracting them!

There is at least 6x creatures in this pic. Can you spot them all?
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Sunday we went for an end of course BBQ at the Warrants house. So so so much good food, mostly made by the kiwis (Canadians just like easy convenience food bought from the Metro) so think that we are all Gordon Ramsay’s and Jamie Oliver’s!
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This boss has 4 kids under 5 and his wife home schools them all. Such well behaved and lovely children! They were lining up to sit on my knee. So cuddly.
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Afternoon runs.
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How to keep Canadian Children.
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We were invited to an event run by the high commissioner and the Defence Attache from Washington DC, Commodore Fred Keating. We had been to drinks before at the high commission and it is fairly small offices so we assumed another event of 10-15 people (more Kiwis than Canadians)! However upon arrival we were greeted at the downstairs door by people with iPads checking us in, and the event was held downstairs in the foyer. 130+ people were there and they were all very very high ranking officers! One lady asked me where we have our ranks on our dress uniforms, we all had a wee chuckle as I told her that we are yet to have any rank.. but showed her the spot it will go in the future!!!

Here’s Commodore Keating doing his speech, and behind him is the Force for NZ PowerPoint presentation, just so happened a shot from our recruit course graduation last year was featured. Cool!
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Our last day at work and the PO shouted us all brekkie at the Wellington Diner. Can’t complain with a name like that! Graduation, awards, speeches, cringey handshake posey photos and we were all done!!! I hurded the cats again for one last shot before everyone departed and headed their separate ways. Thanks team its been awesome!!!
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A massage and a splurge up at MAC was a great way to end the day! Suppling all the NZ girls back home years worth of MAC.
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A day of cleaning out the apartment, and yoga on Parliament Hill. It runs once weekly in the summer up in front of parliament. So many people around!
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Emma arrives tonight and we start our trip first thing tomorrow!
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Bring it on!

Posted by emdaisy 18:01 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 18

Two weeks to go!!

It was time to start cleaning the apartment and make the most of Ottawa.

Lots of workouts this week, including doing my 22x pushups on Parliament Hill, runs along the river and dying from the hot hot days!

They have built this awesome pedestrian bridge with 2x of these giant mirror balls. I don't see much purpose, apart from looking pretty cool. ART! There is one on either side of the bridge.
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Drive through Starbucks
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Moon Cheese
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Saturday was time to explore Algonquin Provincial Park with Julie and Gem. Julie drove us out in her cool jeep, it took almost 3 hours! We wanted to hire a canoe to explore the lakes, but the first place we went to was particularly unhelpful - their delivery driver was over an hour away, meaning we would have strap the canoe's to the roof rack.

A few stops along the way, with locals helping us decipher the maps...
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We found a place! With a 3 seater canoe. Which was already at the lake - meaning we wouldnt have to lug it down. Galeairy Lake, Whitney - Algonquin.
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Geared up with our paddles and life jackets from Opeongo Outfitters, and we were off. 2 hours exploring the lake and sunbathing on the jetty, such a beautiful afternoon.
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Snacks were required after a hard afternoon paddling. #LCHF cheeseburger
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On the way home, we had our first visit to the infamous.. DQ - Dairy Queen. They had an amazing array of icecream cakes and treatzza pizzas! Gem was stoked to discover Funnel Cake (her favourite from the USA)!
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Enroute to the Veg Fest. Got lost, and ended up at the Carleton University Campus. A nice wee bush walk which quickly turned into bush bashing..
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Eventually arrived - it was super busy and hot. Lots of cool products, lots of weird products.. and lots of hipsters.
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Mum - they had Norwex!
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Teageekery - all the natural components grown in her parents garden - you can create anything you wish from all the jars available.
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The best bit was the cashew cheese. Literally just made from fermented cashews and flavours. Soooo good, had to purchase some to bring home.
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Exploring Billings Bridge shopping centre.
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Rainbow Pashmina heaven.
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Broccili Wockly!
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Spring is here.. :)
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Cute coffee filter notes from mystery work colleauges!
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FaceTime with D xx
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Posted by emdaisy 14:45 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 17

This week has been so HOT! You can certainly notice the change and how the spring weather has rolled in so quickly. I swear last week it was snowing....!! All the winter gears have been put to the back of the wardrobe and light cotton items have come forward. PHEW!!
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This weekend has been race weekend in Ottawa. Downtown has been manic. The 5 and 10km races were set for Saturday and the 21 half and 42km marathons were set for Sunday. During the week there was talk of them being cancelled! We had to walk through town to get home Saturday evening. It was madness and took about an extra 20 mins as streets and bridges were shut off!! Turns out the 9 am races had been postponed to 7.30 pm due to the extreme heat. Imagine running a race that late! Sunday's weather looked dicey - with lightning bolts and big clouds on the weather app - but it turned out OK and the marathons went ahead at normal time.
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This week I tried some peanut butter coconut flour bikkies. Wouldn't recommend! Its like the feeling in your mouth when you eat a dry weetbix!!!
However the PO has been contracting me to look after class birthdays including cards and cake. Tomorrow is Jeremy's and so his GF has told me that his favourite cake flavour is carrot. Got my super duper recipe messaged to me from back home, hope its a winner! (even though I wont be able to try any!)
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We called in to get an iced coffee Friday as a treat after our Naval test. The coffee shop within Nordstrom had a candy area attached with these gorgeous little perspex boxed lollies. Total rip off but very cute! My favourites were the ice cream cones and baby and mama pigs. They had these giant flowers on the wall and the girl told me they were made from paper. So crafty!
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Ottawa Fashion: not leaving much to the imagination!
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Saturday it was time to head to the Great Glebe Garage Sale - http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/the-hunt-for-the-great-glebe-garage-sale-bargain - if you watch the video you can see the madness. It is a yearly garage sale which has been going on since 1986 and is the biggest garage sale in North America!! It was huge, down lots and lots of residential streets. People just set up tables and blankets on their front lawns. I was there from about 8.30 - 10 am and by 10 I had had enough of the crowds. I walked and walked (10,000+ steps) and only covered about a third of the whole thing!!!
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Even a band playing while walking round..
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An umbrella.. made from umbrellas!
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An old sewing machine desk and an adding machine.
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Spot Paddington!
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Bikes for Ryan.
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Giant chair!!
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So many different things than what NZers have in our backyard sales.. lots of hockey sticks, hockey pads, roller skates, ice skates...
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Little kids have lemonade stands with cookies and muffins - even these cuties had a stand 'Macaroon 5' with macarons and dance music!!!!
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It was so hot and Starbucks' new passion ice tea's subtle FB advertising got me. I got one (with no sugar) and it was heaven! They keep the key for the loo's behind the counter so the homeless people dont use it all the time.
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I went to the Capital Pop Up Craft Market late morning. I thought it opened at 10 am, but it was actually 11 am so arrived a little bit early. Lucky for me, the first 25 people in the door got a cute goodie bag!! Filled with brochures, lip balm, a badge and bath salts.
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Heaps of talented and crafty local people selling clothing, jewels, fudge and wooden pieces.
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The most exciting thing was the frozen custard from Merry Dairy. Like ice cream, just custard!! Def not on the diet but I was dying from the heat and couldnt resist a mini pop for $1!!
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Views from the air tunnel facing down Rideau. Our apartment is the last big brown building that you can see, on the left!
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LCBO Rose display.
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Saturday afternoon we headed round with snacks to Nick's apartment so he could teach us a few more things about Ground - which is the hardest exam and the one most people fail. Nick has a wealth of knowledge and he has been army for 7 years. He hooked up the powerpoint to the TV and then we moved on to recce flash cards. Such cool kids!!!
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Want to visit here before I leave - "The Tea Party"
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Rideau Street Ambassadors.. I wonder what they actually do?
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Posted by emdaisy 17:33 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 16 & Long Weekend in Kingston!

Another week down, another busy week, learning all things naval, finishing air and starting the ever anticipated... ground!! Dad went to Whenuapai Base Auckland on Monday - how ironic that the first time he's been since I was posted there, I am a million miles away in Canada. Here is he posing with a C-130 Hercules from 40 Squadron.
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I tried a few new recipes in the week, cauliflower crust pizza and seed bread. Recipes are both linked on my FB.
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A few presents from some of the guys at work. Ive been busy clearing out the apartment and getting souvenirs ready for people from work. Glad I bought so many things over!
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Friday called for an early finish and if it was off on a long weekend adventure to.. Kingston! My warrant works in both Ottawa and Kingston, so has a military apartment in Kingston. He was heading home to be with family for the long weekend so we swapped keys and the place was mine! I caught the VIA Rail train out early Friday evening, enroute to Toronto but I got off at Kingston.
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Pitstop in town to get wine and cheeses, the lady at LCBO had never seen a NZ licence before. She thought it was such a novelty. She had to get the official book out with all licences from around the world to check that everything was all legit. I passed! And a bottle of Villa Maria was only $16 CAD. far cheaper than the $50 paid earlier in the year at the Six60 Concert at Villa Maria Winery itself... ay Ryan!!!
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The apartment was super flash, but really an old folks home disguised as an apartment.
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There was a games room, cinema room, common room, library, gym, but the best part was the views from the Pent House!!
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I used the indoor pool and sauna at the neighbouring apartment which you are allowed to via key access. The outdoor pool wasnt yet open, but it was 26 degrees so Im thinking it must be opening soon...
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This 'condo' was part of a huge development out this way, and the third identical building was being built off in the distance. From the PH you could see a game of grid iron!
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Fort Henry http://www.forthenry.com/ was a great place to explore. Great views over Lake Ontario, St Lawrence River and the Cataraqui River. So much history, was cool looking at all the married quarters, dining halls and underground bunkers. We got to see the washrooms, kitchens and underground tunnels.
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They had a live fire and drill display, I thought these must be members from the Royal Military Collage (RMC) next door and so was feeling rather sorry for them getting yelled at and working on the weekend. I got chatting to one of the girls, turns out they are all actors, mostly university students earning some money over the summer!! Couldn't believe it, as the drill was near perfect.
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The gift shop had some funny things for sale..
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More views..
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Had fun looking around the local craft and farmers markets. So many delicious baked goods, veges and flowers for sale.
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Mum I want you to start making some of these cool succulent things.
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Lots of shopping up and down the main street 'Princess Street', lunch for one at a lovely Greek place, and sugar free chocolate 'Mia Gelato' as a treat down on the waterfront.
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So nice to just chill and look out at the marina.
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I was set up with his military friends, who took me in both Friday night when I arrived and then invited me back for more drinks and food on Sunday afternoon. They sure do know how to cook. So many delicious recipes including a delicious cheesy baked artichoke and spinach dip that blew my mind. I introduced them to the 'selfie stick' and they loved it. They got right into the swing of things and started giving it a real go!!!! Thank you for your hospitality ladies, so glad to have met you!
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I saw 3 squirrels over the weekend. This one popped out when we were eating dinner in the backyard! Lots of signs for deer but I never managed to spot one.
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I did the cruise around the 1000 Island's http://www.1000islandscruises.ca/ which was awesome - I managed to choose the best day, beaut weather and really calm sailings. Great views over all the islands, half which are owned by Canada and the other half by the USA. Some people have exclusive islands and it just looked like paradise. You could even hire an island for summer BBQ's! #lifegoals
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We passed another boat - this one did a cruise with lunch. It was super full but always pays to read the reviews on trip advisor...
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The trip was great apart from all the tourists - I hate tourists! Which is funny because yes I know I'm a tourist, but I'm a nice, concientious and spatially aware tourist with no children. Everyone loves New Zealanders around Canada and always has time to stop and talk.. even if they think we have Koala's Ill let it slide this time.. There was live jazz musicians playing on the cruise - Dad you would have liked it.
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I had to cross the LaSelle Causeway http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/ontario/lasalle-eng.html many a time on my voyages from the apartment to downtown Kingston. It was never up, but the ladies told me you can wait for up to 15 minutes while a ship goes underneath!
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Another Fort on my way home - Fort Frontenac.
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The trolley bus had a hop on hop off tour around town.
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The Royal Military College is right next door to Fort Henry. It is the only government owned University in Canada. It sounds like a sweet set up, like basic training but with additional study - all barracks, food, laundry and PT is all provided. https://www.rmcc-cmrc.ca/en There is a huge gym across the road that they students cross by bridge. They just graduated Friday night, and the university students from Queens were gone for the summer which made for a quiet wee town.
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Any guesses on what happens in this igloo shaped pillow building..... Soccer!
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I would love to live here! These gorgeous house look out and over the lake. So quaint.
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Just up the road from these houses is this beautiful old church.
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View to the Kingston Military Base.
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Before you know it, it was time to jump back onboard and head back to Ottawa and the basement..
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Posted by emdaisy 18:10 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

Week 15

The week of the hipster!

It was time to head to ‘Sobey’s’ – a hipster, ‘manbun’ type supermarket as the guys in class call it. It’s pretty much on the way home but I haven’t ever stopped in. Lots of good and exciting things that I haven’t seen before.
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The best thing (these are totally not on the diet so I showed ultimate restraint) was the huge and delicious range of cakes. These choc, banana and strawberry beautifully decorated cakes were only $7 (plus tax)! Naughty foods and any luxuries get taxed but fruit and veg don’t.
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They also had one of those cool vege salad bars like the Wholefoods Market has. NZ needs to get onto this idea.
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Holy crap! This looked good.
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Even a pizza making station.
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Got this ‘nuPasta’ to try. Angel hair!
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One of the guys from work has loaned me his wifes bike. He dropped it to work this week, complete with a lock and helmet so I'm all set to take on Ottawa! First day riding home was a 27 degree sunny day, riding along the river home. So beaut and so hot! Saw a baby goose on my way home.
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Statues, flags and tulips on the way home. The canal has been flooded and there is no ice in sight!
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Wednesday night Gem and I were invited out to a friend from work’s place, to check out his wifes sewing room. We got a bite to eat in town first, another all you can eat but this time it was sushi, Thai, Chinese, Korean and Japanese! We were there for about 1.5 hours and no one else was in the whole restaurant! Strange though as the food was good and we didn’t get sick the next day haha.
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We caught 2 buses out to Pierre and Claire’s place, to be greeted with the most amazing sewing room I have ever seen. This was a sewing room of dreams! Down in the basement, with drawers and compartments, embellishments, ribbons, threads… you name it! We learnt that Claire had never heard of an overlock but instead Canadian’s call it a surger. Claire specialises in quilts, babies and toddlers clothing, and clowns. Such talent!
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Shopping down the Spark Street outdoor mall.
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Saturday I braved the rain, thunder and lightning to head back to Rideau Hall (Governor General’s residence) to head to the Military Tattoo held in the gardens (which would usually be a beautiful setting, but not with the days weather). There was indigenous dancing, highland dancing, 21 gun salute, drill, Air Force & Army bands, even a few Star Wars themed songs. The area I was first sitting in turned out that I could only see the backs of the performers. I walked over the other side, and up into a fairly empty grandstand, where the lady told me, sorry this stand is reserved strictly for Military VIP’s. I told her I was military, she didn’t ask any questions, and I ended up sitting 3 rows back from the Governor General himself and his wife! He had a person sitting behind him whose job was just to hold an umbrella over his head. Officers were dripping with rank in the stands, I was on best behaviour, but it was the best seat in the house!! Glad I braved it for such a cool experience.
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Dinner out with Matt & Jeremy, they have one week left in Ottawa before heading back to NZ. I told them about the good souvenir shops to head to before they left, knowing that males would have left all present buying till the last minute! Matt had brought the same clothes to Ottawa that I had so I made him wear them for an excellent photo opportunity. This guy was 17 and performing magic tricks and unicycling in front of the restaurant. He had quite a crowd.
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The most awesome present wrapping station and cool driftwood fence.
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So much FaceTime with Darcy this week!!!!! Even scheduled in some time with mum and dad and got to see dad modelling his amazing new Canadian umbrella hat that I got him. Will be great at the cricket!
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Sunday was an awesome hipster inspired day. I biked down to the indoor Tulip festival at the Aberdeen Pavillion, and stumbled upon a farmers market. Heaps of neat things for sale, and I even tried some elk sausages (yum)!
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These lettuce boxes were really cool. I would have got one if I was staying longer.
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Tulip Festival Ottawa 2016. They have these giant tulips with really random painted designs on them, including cats, paua shell, parliament, and William Kate & Diana! There were trinkets for sale and old ladies painting beautiful canvas’ of tulip photos.
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Please do not over-touch!!! Only small bits of touching allowed.
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This guy was making water marbling pictures of tulips. I have never seen it being done before, really cool to watch.
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There were a few old school military vehicles parked outside, leftover from yesterday’s military show. Always a good time to do a bit of weekend recce!
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I tried my first dark chocolate, no sugar mocha. Delish (a real coffee too)! Here’s my hipster basket, complete with bike helmet, kale and leeks. Hipsters at the counter in front of me, decided to pay their whole order in coins. Hipsters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Ramon Davis in younger years?
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Biked home along the canal and stopped to take more pictures of tulips along the way. The red and white tulip are a Canadian special! Revisited the lock that Ryan and I put on the bridge. Still there!
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Sauna suit – didn’t even know I needed one!
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Lamb mince cups with zucchini fritters.
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Coconut flour crust chicken pie.
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Healthy Ferrero Rocher balls.
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Still making everyone at work fat. Lemon ‘7-up’ cake and apple pastries!
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Enjoy your week!
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Posted by emdaisy 14:58 Archived in Canada Comments (0)

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