Band of Horses sifted through the dripping laughter bar-side today at my favorite neighborhood haunt. Their lyrics of songs I had long since filed away in the accordion system in my head stood out in the forefront of my thoughts while sitting there and pronounced themselves as I perched on a bar stool, so thoughtfully. With Alfie on my left, Corydon legends who have long adopted the said bar counter as their 9-5 desk real estate to my right, two barista connoisseurs at twelve o'clock, one brilliant Winnipeg filmmaker at eleven thirty, three old schools, two Sundaes and one beer later, conversation was light and sincere. Our cut off finger gloves matched, his exposed skin naturally darker than my ghost winter-white. Our friends and their lovers are baking golden brown in far reached corners of the world as we speak, and we sit at the same bar every afternoon. Left behind, collectively broke as a joke. But not for long.
I left Bar I distracted by many things on my brain, needing to write something down but not knowing where to begin, and yet never waivering for a moment over whether or not to pop in at Sugar Mountain. Unwilling to spend over five hard-earned dollars on the afternoon coffee, I was more than happy to blow five dollars on yogurt covered raisins.
Chocolate or yogurt covered raisins are my favorite treat. It is a rarity, but when I do give in to them my mind goes to summers spent at the lake with my mum and her sisters and mother. These women, proud and good, brilliant mothers with tight knit children running around the bush like wild indians. We did everything together. Our sleep overs at Betula were of the epic variety. We were the kings and queens of the lake, of the woods. All of this is remembered and perused mentally when I eat yogurt covered raisins. What a delight.
Valentine's was equally as sweet, but not remotely so in a romantic sense. We participated in a tradition, just not on Hallmark's watch. I think this is how this hyped, pointless holiday should be: sweet, but not romantically forced. And it was just that. My uncle James picked up myself and a mountain of laundry and when we arrived back at his home, we were greeted by my favorite three year old in the universe, Kaleb Minh. We did the laundry together and whenever I would hand something to him to throw in the wash, he would yell "clear for takeoff" with every tossed article. I think he learned that from my brother, who was once a pilot. When that was said and done, we walked hand in hand up the stairs to a freshly fed six week old and read her Robert Munsch's Paperbag Princess as she slept on my chest, apathetic to the snot-nosed Heroine. The rest of my siblings and Tante Daryl eventualy filtered in and we all sat down to eat steak with blue cheese and baked potatoes and greek salad. Simple and luxe at the same time. Every meal at their house is paired with a bottle of wine that always compliments the flavor of the dish. Without fail. It was a delightful day.
This morning, three haggard Kroeker siblings stood in line at the Don for an hour in anticipation of the food that was to come. It was worth the wait. In the interim between sitting and wolfing, we practiced our signatures in the blank spaces of the newspaper just like we did when we were 9, 10 and thirteen. It was nice. My embrace with Ragged and Scott at the very end was the perfect precursor to a perfect day.
Now I am back at home, wholly satisfied and listening to Band of Horses still. Go buy yourself some yogurt covered raisins and think of your Grandmama.
Make out with me, this man.
Post script: I just scoffed when I noticed the belt chain and lock around his waist until I caught myself, and realized it is for locking up his moped in between rides. Double cool, double babe.
Post post script: His name is Ringo and he lives in San Fran. Triple cool, triple babe.