November 28th, 2004

Fishy Circumstances

Gourmet Food and Wine Show: Orientation

I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from my first Gourmet Food and Wine show. I learned it existed from targeted marketing flyers in the LCBO (Ontario's provincial monopoly alcohol store), which included the added allure of a $3 off coupon. From the website, I knew there would be cooking shows and sommelier-guided wine tastings. I knew there would be 160 someodd vendors, a Vintages store (an LCBO spinoff devoted to wine), and a free wine glass. I knew that tasting tickets were 50 cents each, and that the recommended quantity of them to buy was $20 worth.

I envisioned that the event would be dominated by small-scale produced grocery products, cheeses, sausages, salad dressings, chocolates and the like, and that one sample ticket would equal one sample. I was pretty well wrong on both counts.

The show opened at 2 pm on Friday, and I arrived not long after, attempting to space out the two shows in my weekend as much as possible. The building was relatively quiet, which meant I had few examples of other people doing the show from which to model my own explorations of it. The wine glass table sat right by the entrance to the show, unlabeled, but full of wine glasses. It seemed wrong to just take it, so I set out to explore what the show had to offer, to orient myself aisle by aisle.

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Fishy Circumstances

Warm feet

My feet are sore and tired, but they are nestled in the airy comfort of a pair of brand-new, handmade blue sheep's wool slippers. They are cozy warm and fill several years' worth of desire for slippers. I frequently have chilly feet: now I have a remedy.

For the fourth year running, chamaeleoncat, colins_journal, and I did much of our Christmas shopping at the annual One of a Kind show, an absolutely enormous arts and crafts fair held at Exhibition Place. (It's on through next weekend.) We were joined by three show first-timers, and ran into many more friends scattered throughout the exhbition hall.

C. and I are not done shopping for Christmas, but we've made good inroads on it. After seven hours, a chocolate brittle and lemonade break, new slippers, a lovely new sweater for me, and quite a few giftable purchases, it was time to go home, put on slippers, and collapse.