as you might have guessed from something i posted earlier this week, the world figure skating championships are taking place in the arena across the street from my office. here are some "skating stories"...
there are only 6 medium-sized hotels in downtown London, with another one about half-way to the major highway that goes between Toronto and Detroit and maybe another half dozen near that highway. outside my office building are shuttle stops going to Stratford, about an hour away, where a large Shakespearean festival is held ever summer, Ingersoll, about 30 minutes east, and Woodstock about 45 minutes east.
when i left the office tonight, i walked down the middle of the closed streets on my way to the liquor store to get some red wine for the next few days.
Holy Canadiana Batman!
even though our liquor control board (LCBO) is currently running a California wines promotion, you'd never know it from the store near my office. all the displays are Canadian wines from the Lake Erie north shore and Niagara, Canadian whiskies (including a distillery on-site ready to engrave bottles for you personally), cases and cases of ice wine (which the Japanese visitors snap up by the case at an average cost of (*gulp*) $750 Cdn each, and maple syrup liqueur!
on the south side of the arena, in a large plaza, are gigantic tv screens displaying the skating going on inside.
i walked up to the plaza to watch some of the men's short program which started just before i left the office.
as i stood there, i felt a gentle tap on my shoulder and turned around expecting to see someone i knew.
instead, i found myself face to face with 3 young women wearing jackets with Japanese flags on them. they all bowed and, feeling awkward, i gave a slight bow, too. then one of them said in English that they all thought my hair was so beautiful in the sunlight.
i replied with the only words i know in Japanese: Domo Arigatou Gozaimasu
. and i bowed to them, to many giggles. they said goodbye and went back to the building while i stood there grinning like an idiot.
isn't that the sweetest thing?
so, i keep going to the store a few minutes later and while i'm stopped at the lights, this couple from Italy ask me if i know anything about the two Italian restaurants across the street. fortunately, i've been to one and it's REALLY good! it's also cheaper than the one right next door. even better is that i remembered how to say that in Italian "meno caro" because they gave me a confused look when i said less expensive in English. i hope they liked Abruzzi
because - OMG - the food is amazing there!
anyway... the Canadians are in 2nd place after the pair short program and our Patrick Chan is in 1st after the men's short program - which had so many skaters in the field - it's taken FIVE hours to complete!