Posted by: Valerie | January 11, 2010

Of Deklin, Rosemary’s Exhibit and the Market in Winter

This is the little guy at six months.

The last gasp of Christmas has now been exhaled. We didn’t see Jamie, Angela and Deklin over the Christmas holiday so we went to Ottawa this last weekend for a belated visit. It was a snowy trip almost all the way to Perth. Not too bad a drive really but there were lengthy periods of following a snow plough at 50km per hour which was tedious. Still we were safe.

What a delight to see the little fellow again. It’s two months since I’ve seen him and of course he has grown considerably and is  now very conscious of his environment. He is gurgling and gabbling and laughing a lot which is all very endearing. No crying all the time we were there.

James did his wonderworks in the kitchen. He had a friend over and the two guys made us roast beef and Yorkshire puddings. Never say no to that. The next evening we had J’s special fettucine alfredo which no doubt added some extra avoirdupois. I was also lucky enough to indulge some 10-year-old Tanqueray with Perrier which was extra delicious. It has to be said that we do eat and drink very well when we visit. It’s great to have a son who is a foodie! And it’s great to have a daughter-in-law who is so wonderful. I love her to bits. Jamie too of course but that doesn’t need saying.

James and Dekl

A trip to Ottawa is always more than just a family visit so Joe and I were out and doing things. A real treat on Saturday morning was breakfast at the Ottawa Bagel Shop where my wonderfully talented friend Rosemary has an exhibition right now. The theme is dogs that have visited her while she has been selling her farm produce at the Ottawa Farmers’ Market all season. There were Dalmatians and spaniels and fuzzy-wuzzies but my favourite was an elegant greyhound. I was also extremely taken with the painting of four musk oxen in the snow. For those who don’t know about Rosemary I can’t do better than refer you to an article that appeared in an Arts paper. It was a while ago and life has carried on bringing new and fascinating aspects to life at Tirasilin Farm which is Rosemary’s splendid establishment.

Rosemary's Muskoxen - wish they lived on my wall.

Of course we had to fit in a trip to the Byward Market which is so different in the winter. Gone are the vegetable stalls with their riotous displays of colour, the crowds, the jumble of languages that intrigue and confuse the ear. Shoppers dart purposefully in and out of shops to purchase their gourmet cheeses, fish and pastries and don’t linger in the icy sharp air.  The craft vendors and flower sellers won’t reappear until spring but some tough stallholders are braving the temperature to sell gaily coloured hand-knitted Nepalese woollies for ridiculously low prices.

I only saw one beggar/busker – neither term seems right. This was a person, gender unknown, who was standing absolutely still, wearing face-paint and peculiar clothes. S/he was holding two badminton racquets and when I put some coins into his/her cup, s/he acknowledged me by changing the angles at which the racquets were held. I would have taken a photo but Joe had the camera and had walked on ahead.

We finished our touristing around with a trip to the Hogs Back Falls to inspect the frozen waterfalls. A pleasant woman volunteered to take our photograph so here we are.

Footnote: There have been already three skidoo drownings reported locally. I wonder what the final total will be this year.


  1. Trust me Val. You will look back on these years in that wonderful place with joy and wonder. It IS a wonderful country and you have a little piece of it to savour.

    Please give Deklin an extra hug and whisper from me the next time you see him. He is a wonder to behold.

    Ditto Rosemary.

  2. I think all babies are, Betty. Wonder how he’ll be in the terrible-twos. His daddy was a fiend on skates!

  3. I also especially liked the greyhound. I took a photo of it this morning but I didn’t get close enough and when I enlarged it by cropping, I lost some of the sharpness. I think I liked it the most because it was a little sketchy, as in sketched.

    • Me too exactly!

  4. Just lookin’! That is one handsome little boy.
    As for terrible twos, you will not be responsible for
    his behaviour unless he is living with you, so you can just enjoy him and wait until he is three and four, those wonderful ages before they get out with
    other kids.

    • Yes, my grandson is really wonderful! I am in need of a visit to Ottawa to spend a couple of days with him. Maybe next week.

      When we came to Canada, Jamie, the baby’s daddy, was two. Of course he was completely disoriented and very confused by the move and played up accordingly. He was the master of the tantrum and one day in the little two-bedroom apartment all five of us were trapped in, he started up big time. So I put him into the bedroom and closed the door. After a while the bawling stopped and silence reigned. I peeped in. The little wretch had got his own back. He had opened a drawer with his clothes in and peed in it! I’m not sure how I survived Jamie’s early days but I did and he subsequently improved greatly when he learned to read at the age of three by watching Sesame Street on TV.

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