Category Archives: travel

Things I Learned on My Summer Staycation…

I’m back at the bookstore today after our first 11 days of vacation…here’s what I learned:

1. Laundry and dirty dishes never take a vacation…in fact, when everybody stays home, their volume increases!  Wishing clothes would fold themselves doesn’t work.

Why can't clothes do this themselves?

2. Cleaning under furniture once in a while is a good thing…on a hunt for the satellite remote (it has to go back to the company in a couple of weeks because we’re changing over to fibre-op TV), we moved our couch.  Lurking underneath were bowls, spoons, forks, plates, assorted food wrappers, pencils, pens, dozens of ponytail holders, and a mystery object, which we later identified as a petrified clementine which resembled an oddly-shaped peach pit.  All together now: EWWW!  Oh, and we didn’t find the remote there either…

3. Our dog hates the vacuum cleaner…I think he thinks it’s some sort of loud animal.  He barks and whines and tries to bite it…we have to put him out on the deck to use it.

Jake's worst enemy...probably because he hasn't seen it enough to get to know it...

4. Sleeping in never makes me feel more rested…it just makes me feel guilty that I’m not accomplishing more (I think I’m the only one in my family who feels this way).

5. Wallpaper is now pretty much obsolete…Jim had to go all over town to find some…it was on sale for $5/roll because the store was selling out of it.  It’s just as frustrating to put up now as it was 25 years ago (which is why I let him do it himself!).

This isn't Jim...

6. I’m grateful for what we have after finishing the book “The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls.  This was our Book Club choice…it was a tough read because I was so outraged that no one did anything to help Jeannette and her siblings!  It’s amazing to me that they all survived with their sanity intact.

This book made me furious!

7. Small things excite me – finding out we had a cherry tree and blueberry bushes in our yard after living there a year-and-a-half was the highlight of my week (see https://writerwoman61.wordpress.com/2010/07/20/surprise-surprise-surprise/)!

8. The number of times Hope has to pee on a road-trip is roughly the number of miles divided by 25.  There’s Gravol for carsickness…I wish they’d come up with something for “travelbladder.”

We always give Hope this when we travel...

9. I’m loving the headphones Jim got me for my birthday…I can plug them into the computer, and listen to CBC “Concerts on Demand” while I work on my blog…Jim and Anna got a kick out of watching me “get down” to Garrett Mason and Colin Linden’s rendition of John Lee Hooker’s “Boom Boom” yesterday (I think they were both giggling hysterically) http://bit.ly/c0dJcL .

10. Our hummingbirds are fearless…one buzzed my head while I was picking beans in the garden the other day…they like the nectar from the scarlet runner bean blossoms!

Hummingbirds love these blossoms...

11. Kids “can’t hear” you when you ask them to do chores, but announce that food is ready, and they’ll knock you over getting to the table!

12. I like my regular routine…as much as I love the kids, I really don’t want to be home with them every day!  I was happy to get up at 5:30 this morning and come to the bookstore, even though I have a ton of work to do.

A corner of our store...

Next vacation is in mid-August…

20 Comments

Filed under books, family, gardening, music, nature, tourism, travel

Day-Trippin’ and Hope…well, She Got Muddy…

Yesterday, Jim and I took the girls on a day trip to Moncton (Devin opted out).  Jim’s week of holidays was winding down, and we wanted to take the kids somewhere.   We had picked up a free family pass to Hopewell Rocks in Alma when we were in St. Martins last month – this was the perfect opportunity to use it.  Hope and Anna had never been there, and it had been years since Jim and I had visited it.  The girls also wanted to go to Magic Mountain, a water theme park in Moncton…

Magic Mountain...

We left our house about 9:30 (not bad since we’d planned to be gone by 9)…our cooler was packed with bottled water (partially frozen), egg salad and cold cut sandwiches.  We also took cookies, granola bars, and the rest of the cherry muffins (Jim even had one in the car).  After making several stops for Hope to pee, we finally arrived at Magic Mountain about 11:15 a.m.  Hope had just gotten a new cellphone for her birthday, but had to be convinced to leave it in the car (on a pee break in Sussex, she texted Brianna “I’m on the toilet!”).  We dropped off the girls, reminded them to apply sunscreen, told them we’d come back for lunch at 1, and headed for the furniture stores.

Hope's new phone is like this one, except it's purple...

We definitely noticed a difference in the stores in Moncton…most of the sales people left us alone (although there were a couple of exceptions to that).   The sales people in Saint John were much more attentive (and friendlier)…to the point of annoyance sometimes!  I saw a beautiful old-style secretary desk at one place (which would have been perfect for my “Room of My Own” https://writerwoman61.wordpress.com/2010/07/13/janes-homework-assignment-a-room-of-my-own/, but not so perfect for our living room).  Ditto for the Victorian-style sofa…

The secretary desk was something like this one...

We found a couple of nice used wing chairs for only $100 each, but the arms were quite worn.  We saw the same sectional set we’ve been contemplating, for $400 more (same chain store, different city – they must know that people have more money in Moncton).  One liquidation store’s stock was almost completely leather…I hate leather furniture!  Before we knew it, it was time to meet the girls for lunch.

This couch wouldn't look right in our old farmhouse...

We made our way back to the park, but the girls weren’t at the appointed meeting place…parking was a nightmare…we ended up straddling the curb near the entrance until we saw them.  We drove down to the Boardwalk at the park, and ate our lunch at one of the picnic tables there.  I had my mouth all set for a “beaver tail” until I heard the price…$6.25…yikes!  They were $3 when I left Moncton 13 years ago…the girls got ice cream, which was much more reasonably-priced!  After lunch, we took them back to Magic Mountain, and headed towards town.  Still no luck with furniture…everything was either really expensive, or incredibly boring!

Unfortunately, this delicious-looking Beaver Tail didn't find its way into my mouth...

We’d arranged to pick the girls up at 3…we retrieved them, wet and sunburned, and started for Hopewell Cape.  Low tide was at 5:15, which is the only time you can walk down on the beach by the Rocks.  We got there just after 4, and started down the trail from the Interpretation Centre.  After walking several hundred yards, and going down a few hundred steps, we made it to our destination.

Brianna and Hope posing next to the rocks...

The "Flower Pot Rocks" Hopewell Rocks is famous for...

One of the park rangers showed us some sculptures which had been made by carefully balancing small rocks on top of each other.

Ranger rearranging some rocks...

Hope was wearing flip-flops, and had great fun getting as muddy as she possibly could.

They say that mud is good for your skin...Hope's going to have the softest toes around...

Hope's muddy calves...

Jim and Anna took several photos while we were there (these are Anna’s).  After about an hour, everybody was tired and hot…Jim said he’d spring for the shuttle to take us back to the Interpretation Centre (we still had to climb the stairs, though).  We had to wait what seemed like forever for Hope to get her feet washed off at the “washing station.”  Finally, we were on the “shuttle,” which was really just a big golf cart, and headed back to the parking lot.

Anna took this one of her and Brianna on the back of the shuttle...that's Jim's head between them...

Everybody was hungry…we drove back to Moncton and stopped at Mike’s Restaurant, a chain we like, but no longer have in Saint John.  We ate until we were stuffed (no room for dessert)!  Hope’s cellphone vibrated, she jumped at the very same time the waitress came: “I’m sorry, did I scare you?” she asked.

“No,” said Hope.  “My cellphone just went off.”

We gave the waitress a big tip…

Mike's Logo...ours in Saint John has been closed for a few years...

We stopped in Sussex for ice cream on the way home, and popped into Walmart to look at shelving.  Since we have a Walmart in Saint John, we decided to wait and pick it up here.

We finally arrived home about 9:30…I went right to bed, and was snoring within minutes of my head hitting the pillow.

Vacations can be exhausting…

16 Comments

Filed under family, food, nature, photos, tourism, travel

Nancy’s Homework Assignment…Where I’ll Be in 2030…

My friend Nancy at Embracing Myself recently wrote a post about how she saw herself in 2030 http://nancygedney.wordpress.com/2010/07/19/the-once-and-future-me/.  I hope she doesn’t mind if I do my own version of it…

In 2030, I’ll be 69.  I’ll probably have about 8 or 10 grandchildren by then (I hope all our kids have finally moved out).  I’m going to be the Gramma who’s always got chocolate chip cookies in the house, but knows how to hide zucchini in a chocolate cake!  My grandchildren will have to put up with listening to me sing silly songs, and read them stories like “Peter Rabbit.”  I’ll be telling them ALL the embarassing stories about their parents, and I will also tell them about their ancestors (being the unofficial family historian).  Anybody who wants to learn how will be taught how to crochet.  Grampy Jim can tell them what computers were like before they were born.

One of my favourite books to read aloud...

I’ll dress for comfort, not fashion…just like I do now (I am capable of matching colours though – no stripes with plaids for me!).  I’ll still put on makeup every day and have my hair done regularly…

I'm unlikely to ever wear one of these...

I’ll still be running the bookstore (my way, since I’m assuming my dad will be gone by then).  No more classical music…talented singer-songwriters will play as customers choose their books.  I might even have enough money to hire another staffperson by then, so that Jim and I can travel  occasionally (short trips mostly – a long weekend here and there).  Once every couple of years, we’ll take a big vacation: Italy or somewhere else in Europe.

I hope to see this view in Tuscany some day...

I want to be the kind of old gal who says what she thinks, and doesn’t worry much about what other people think of her…kind of like Hallmark’s Maxine.  That broad tells it like it is!  I pretty much do that now anyway…don’t ask me if you look fat unless you really want to know!

I love Maxine...

I’ll still have my garden, although hopefully by then, I’ll have some flowers too.  I ran out of time for them this year. 

I’m still going to be blogging, and maybe will have published a book or two – probably something historical.

We’ll have bought our home, and decorated it to our taste (although the decorating process has started as we speak…Jim’s in the other room, swearing at wallpaper).

Jim and I will have friends over frequently for “Game Night.” We’ll play games to keep our minds sharp, like “Scrabble”, “Upwords”, and “Trivial Pursuit.”  We’ll chow down on veggie platters and dip, and cheese and crackers.  There will always be music playing in the background.  There will be lots of family dinners too, potluck so that I don’t have to spend all day cooking.

Scrabble...a classic game...

In the summer, we’ll go fishing, canoeing and biking.  We’ll hire somebody to mow the lawn and bring in the firewood when it’s delivered.

Wait a minute…this sounds a lot like my life is now (except for the kids being gone part)…interesting…

Where will you be in 20 years?

11 Comments

Filed under blogging, books, family, food, friends, gardening, music, self-discovery, travel

Our July the 4th…

When one lives in Canada, July 4, 2010 is just another Sunday…however, ours was special because we were invited to a family reunion to celebrate two graduations (one university and one high school – Jim’s cousins’ kids), and a birthday (Jim’s aunt). 

We had French toast for breakfast before we hit the road for the hour-and-a-half drive to Fredericton.  We got in the van just after noon…we were halfway down our road when Jim asked if I’d brought the address where the party was…nope…it was home on my Facebook account.  Back we went!

Hope is notorious for two things on long car trips: getting carsick (she always takes Gravol before we go), and having to stop every 45 minutes to an hour to go pee.  On one such rest stop at a Tim Horton’s, Hope commented on how rude people were: “I held the door for three people, and not one of them said ‘Thank you,’ ” she complained.  She’s a good girl.

We arrived at our destination just after 2 p.m.  Fredericton was very hot!  Thank goodness for air conditioning in the van.  The kids jumped into the pool almost as soon as we got there.

Hope in a boat, Brianna freezing her braces off…

Jim and I sat outside by the pool for a while, but soon came inside because the sun was intense! Also as more and more kids jumped in the pool, the chance of being splashed increased incrementally!

Anna, Brianna and Hope cower at the side of the pool as the boy cousins toss another cousin...

The party was potluck…my favourite kind of event! The table was loaded with all manner of deliciousness: meatballs, casseroles, salads and my rolls. Some day I’m going to invent a paper plate big enough to hold all that food in one go!

The graduates and the food: Jaimee and Matthew

Aunt Alison with her birthday cake...

We enjoyed catching up with the various members of Jim’s family…soon it was time to go.

Our drive home was uneventful, and Hope made it all the way from Oromocto to home without having to pee!  I was happy to make it home from Fredericton without spending massive amounts of money (the kids usually talk us into taking them shopping while we’re there!).

I put in some frozen pizza for supper, and went out to the garden to pick spinach/greens to go with it.  The cucumber beetles were still dining on my squash plants (note to self: pick up more Trounce).

After supper, I went out to water the garden…I carefully sprayed all the plants with the hose.  I was coiling it up and putting the hose away, when I heard what sounded like a shotgun coming from the next property over…talk about scary!  After the second one, the Mama From the ‘Hood came out in me…I hollered, “Whoever’s shooting that gun better stop, or I’m callin’ the freakin’ cops!”  Jim called them anyway…there were two more noises after that.  Dad said the last one sounded like fireworks (did I mention we DON’T celebrate the 4th of July in Canada?)…one of Rothesay’s finest showed up at the door about a half hour after we called.  He was of the opinion that it probably was fireworks, but told us that it was now legal to shoot coyotes within 150 feet of a house (we figured they were shooting deer).  Great news…not!  The officer assured us he would keep patrolling the area for a while…I appreciated it!

It’s been a half hour since we heard anything from next door…I’m heading to bed soon…hoping it stays quiet!

Leave a comment

Filed under family, food, gardening, memories, rants, travel

Things I Love…

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe once said, “We are shaped and fashioned by what we love.”  Here are some of the things I love:

1. My children/stepchildren/grandchild.  As much as they drive me crazy sometimes, I still love them all!

Who couldn't love this sweet face?

2. Jim.  I am so grateful every day that we found each other! 

Jim rockin' out on the back porch...

 

3. The rest of our family.  Their love and support means so much to us. 

 4. Our bookstore.  It is a joy to go there every day, meet amazing people, and learn new things all the time!

Our Store…

5. Our home.  I wish I had moved back to the country a lot sooner.  I love our back yard, the river, our garden, and being surrounded by nature. 

Hope in our yard...

 

6. Our dog, Jake.  He’s always happy to see us, no matter how little time we’ve been gone.

Jake, hanging out on the trampoline with the kids...

7. Getting away for long weekends with Jim.  We both need time away from the responsibilities of work and having four teenagers still at home.  We try to go at least a couple of times a year.  Our favourite places are PEI and Grand Manan.

North Head, Grand Manan from the ferry...photo by Jim...

 

8.  Great music, live or recorded.  I simply can’t live without it!

Here we are at Magnetic Hill in the summer of 2008, with 90,000 people who came to see the Eagles and John Fogerty (among others)...

 9. Good simple food.  Nothing tastes better to me than vegetables fresh from the garden, or homemade cookies right out of the oven.

10. Books.  I always have at least one on the go.

One of the books I'm reading now...

11. Red wine.  I developed a taste for it later in life, having only had white wine until the past few years.  The girls in Book Club got me on to it!

12. Live theatre.  I’ve been going to Saint John Theatre Company plays, as well as the Saint John Shakespeare Festival for many years.  The quality of the productions is top-notch, and you can’t ask for a more beautiful venue than the Imperial Theatre!

Imperial Theatre...

2 Comments

Filed under books, food, music, self-discovery, travel

My Bucket List…

Several of my blogging friends have recently posted their “Bucket List,” which is essentially a list of things you’d like to do before you die.  I’ve never written mine down, and it changes sometimes…here’s what it is today:

1. Go to Tuscany, Italy.  See the art/architecture, drink the wine, and eat the food!

Tuscan Countryside...

2. See the following musicians live: Elton John, James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, and Simon and Garfunkel.  I finally got to see Neil Young in concert last year – it was amazing!

JT...Still Sexy at 62...

3. Finish my collection of “Lucile” books by Owen Meredith (Lord Bulwer Lytton).  Between 1860 and 1938, it came out in some 2000 different bindings – I have about 45.

This one's nice...I don't have it...yet...

4. Work in the bookstore full-time without having to have a “real job” to eat.

Our fireplace at the bookstore...

5. Buy the house we live in and fill it with books and antiques (after the kids are gone, of course!).

"Our" House...

6. Write a book and have it published, probably something historical.  I edited a book for a friend a few years ago – I didn’t get the see the final proof, and they spelled my last name wrong in the front of the book (Matherson instead of “Matheson”)!

7. Take a summer off and do nothing but read, write, cook, garden, and listen to music.

Relaxing last fall in Grand Manan...

8. Visit Saskatchewan and Manitoba, the only two provinces I haven’t been to yet.

A canola field out west...

9. Learn to make edible piecrust.

My piecrust never looks like this...

10. Go to Germany and see where my ancestors came from (I’m about 3/4 German and the rest is English).  Dad’s family came to the States in the 1750’s, and Mom’s German ancestors came about a century later.  Here are my German family names: Shoots (originally Schutz, we think), Braun, Schmidt, and Auer.

My Mamma, Marie (Auer) Taylor...

4 Comments

Filed under dreams, food, music, self-discovery, travel

The Rock…Nice Place to Visit, But…

It snowed today in St. John’s, Newfoundland (my deck here in Hammond River is hot enough to burn my bare feet!) – this makes me glad I don’t live there any more…

Photo taken today in some poor St. Johner's back yard...

I left my parents’ home in Prince Edward County, Southern Ontario, for St. John’s in November, 1983.  I was going to join my boyfriend, who had gotten his first full-time radio job at the new station, CKIX-FM, or “Kix Country” as it was known.  I think I flew to Halifax, where I traded the comfortable jet I’d been travelling on for a noisy turboprop abomination known as the Hawker-Siddley.  After a very rough flight, we landed at the St. John’s Airport, where I was met by my happy boyfriend (we hadn’t seen each other for a few weeks!).  The weather was cold and grey, which I would discover was a pretty much constant condition in St. John’s.  As we drove to a very nice bed & breakfast near Bannerman Park, I looked at the scenery – multicoloured frame houses (every colour – usually pastels)  jammed close together lined the narrow, hilly streets of St. John’s.  Brick houses are not often seen on the Rock.

A typical downtown streetscape in St. John's...

While my boyfriend was at work, I spent my days looking for an apartment…I finally found one on Casey St., near the downtown area.  Our new home was two rooms (a kitchen and living room/bedroom)  and a bathroom at the top of a long staircase in a four-plex in a working-class neighbourhood.  The back yard was tiny and treeless, and the house was so close to the sidewalk that we didn’t even have a front yard.  For these “luxury” accommodations, our rent was $300/month, plus heat (oil) and hydro (when I got my first apartment in Saint John, New Brunswick fourteen years later, I was paying $400/month for a 3-bedroom flat with a dining room and a double back yard!).  Our landlord’s first name was “Emerson” – I’d never met a man named that before.  We went to the local thrift shop, and bought a used bed and a small TV- it was our only furniture for quite a while.  My boyfriend worked evenings until midnight – we used to watch TV until 2 or 2:30 in the morning, and then go to bed (Newfoundland has its own time zone which is an hour-and-a-half later then Eastern time – all the TV shows come on really late).  We also acquired a cute striped kitten that someone was giving away…we named her Mandy.

This was our street...we lived on the right hand side...downtown was at the bottom of the big hill...

Our downstairs neighbours were a young married couple with a new baby boy – Brian was doing pre-med at Memorial University.  We became good friends – I spent a lot of time talking to Ruth (I never did find a job!) and playing with the baby.  Brian and Ruth were from the country, and had their own special dialect, which took us quite a while to understand completely Instead of “Where is Bob?”, Newfies say: “Where’s Bob to?”.  Instead of “Sally is doing her laundry”, the Newfie version is “Sally’s after doin’ the wash” (pronounced “warsh”).   We were lucky the laundromat was just down the street, because we didn’t have a car!

It was at Brian and Ruth’s that I first tasted moose meat, which Ruth had “bottled” (Newfie for “canned” – I wish I had a tape of Ruth saying “bottled” – it has a completely different pronunciation over there).  I have loved moose meat ever since.   They also introduced us to “boiled dinner,” which is a mix of corned beef, cabbage, potatoes and turnips.  Another night we went down for supper, Brian made Chicken Cordon Bleu (which is not a traditional Newfoundland dish – I think he was just showing off – it was good, though!).  Brian and Ruth used canned milk a lot – fresh milk is so expensive (as are fresh fruits and vegetables!).  One Newfoundland “delicacy” I refused to try was cod tongues – I liked fish, but not enough to eat that part of the body!  I never had “fish and brewis” (pronounced “bruise”) either – it just looked gross!

Cod Tongues...ewww!

We made some good friends at the radio station…my boyfriend’s boss and his wife invited us to their New Year’s Eve party.  A lot of people are familiar with the potent drink that Newfies like known as “screech,” which is dark Jamaican rum.  That night, we were introduced to another Newfie tradition called “swish.”  An online dictionary of  “Canadianisms” defines swish as: “A kind of liquor made from putting water into barrels that have previously held some sort of alcohol (whisky, brandy, whatever) and letting the alcohol leach out of the wood. Drunk by university students who like to go blind.”  Also in attendance at the party was the guy who did the night shift at the radio station (midnight to six a.m.): Snuffy was a cowboy/musician from Texas (I have no idea what possessed him to move to Newfoundland, but I think he’s back home now).  He had imbibed quite a bit of swish before leaving for his on-air shift – his boss ended up coming in for him to finish up after Snuffy passed out!

Imagine drinking liquor made in this swish barrel...

On our strict budget, eating out in St. John’s consisted of walking down the street to the Mary Brown’s Famous Chicken (picture Colonel Sanders in a skirt) and bringing home some chicken legs and fries.  Once, we ate at a sitdown restaurant on Duckworth Street, but I can’t remember its name – I don’t think it’s there any more.

Mary Brown's Famous Chicken logo...

Other entertainment consisted of going with my boyfriend to shows the radio station was sponsoring at local bars – I do like Newfie music!  We also saw the movie “Footloose” with Brian and Ruth – we went out dancing at a bar on George St. afterwards.  I still love Kevin Bacon!

Footloose poster...

Without a car, we depended on our feet or the bus to get us where we needed to go…we rarely took a cab in St. John’s, because the transit system is excellent – there’s a bus every ten minutes on the main routes.  Snow removal, however, was a different story: I have a vivid memory of walking down LeMarchant Street to Dominion get groceries in February: the snow was thigh-deep, and as I trudged miserably along, ice pellets were bouncing painfully off my cheeks.  My only thought was: “What the hell am I doing here?”

This is a pretty typical St. John's winter scene...

One time in the summer, Brian and Ruth borrowed a car and took us to visit their friends near Torbay – it was a beautiful drive – I remember lots of rocks, trees and cliffs – it was the only time I ever saw the Newfoundland countryside.  We enjoyed Brian and Ruth’s friends too…they were a delightful old hippie couple (I say “old” but I was in my early 20’s at the time – they were probably in their late 50’s!).  The man was one of Brian’s professors at MUN.  We had a picnic in their yard.

This picturesque photo is typical of the Torbay area...

It was in Newfoundland that I decided to get my ears pierced – I’d never had it done as a kid.  I convinced my boyfriend to get one of his done too – I thought it would look sexy!  Off we went to the beauty salon – I opted to get his “extra” earring put in my ear (two holes in my right ear), since we were paying for it anyway.  The actual piercing didn’t hurt much, but boy, it was painful turning the earrings for the six weeks afterward (my boyfriend ended up letting his grow over because he kept getting cysts).  My first pair of earrings were little black telephone receivers I bought at the cheap department store downtown (kind of like Woolworth’s, only grubbier).

Unfortunately, the pierced ear didn't make my boyfriend look more like Harrison Ford...

Soon afterwards, my boyfriend got a job offer at a radio station in Moncton, New Brunswick, and the longest ten months of my life came to an end!  The people in Newfoundland are great, but the weather and the cost of living there suck!

4 Comments

Filed under memories, tourism, travel

Eating Around New Brunswick…

Anybody who has ever read this blog knows that I love to eat, so I thought I would share some of the special places we’ve found to eat in New Brunswick.

When driving up to Moncton for the Book Sale last night, we stopped for supper at a little place in Sussex we’d never tried before: The Broadway Café at 73 Queen Street (http://www.broadwaycafe.ca/). 

The café only has a few tables, but the atmosphere is cosy and inviting – the booths are made of light-coloured wood with rounded corners.  Since we arrived at 4:30, it was too early for the supper menu, so we ordered from the lunch selections.  We both opted for sandwiches – Jim got the smoked meat, and I had smoked chicken.  The sandwiches were served on beautiful homemade multigrain bread with cucumber and tomatoes (Jim’s had dill pickles slices on top too).  Instead of fries, there was a lovely side salad made with a variety of greens, and slivered carrots.  The dressing was pleasantly garlicky and tasted homemade as well.  If we’d had more time, we probably would have had dessert, but we were on a schedule.  We had water to drink (although the café is licensed)…with tax and tip included, two of us had a nice meal for $20!  We agreed that the Broadway will be added to our list of favourite restaurants!

Our favourite place in St. Martins is Fiori’s, the restaurant at Salmon River Bed and Breakfast (http://www.salmonriverbandb.com/) …it is on the main drag and only open March to November.  The dining area is small, but cosy.  The walls are covered with local art, and there are shelves around the room with lots of books (St. Martins is a “Booktown”).  The owners are Mike and Barb Fiori, transplants from Colorado.  Mike, a retired police officer, does the cooking, while Barb serves the meals.  Barb makes wicked desserts, which she delights in telling customers are calorie-free because they’re homemade!  The carrot cake is to die for, chock-full of walnuts and raisins – we split a piece because the serving is so large!  My usual choice for the main course is the Grilled Chicken Breast Platter…I choose fries instead of chips as a side.  There is also a small salad with raspberry vinaigrette.  Last time we went, Jim had the Fiesta Platter, a Mexican-inspired combo of a taco, a burrito and a tostada.  He enjoys spicy stuff more than I do!  Fiori’s is also licensed if you’d like to have a glass of wine or a beer.  With drinks and dessert, a meal for two comes in at around $35.

My favourite lunch place in Saint John is currently the Urban Deli at 68 King St. (http://urbandeli.ca/).  I love a good spinach salad, and the Urban makes the best one I’ve had in a while!  It has grilled portabella mushrooms, feta cheese, tomato, smoked meat bits, and egg, all drizzled with an amazing maple vinaigrette!  It is well worth the $10 it costs.  The service is excellent at the Urban.  It is recommended that you get there slightly before noon if you want to get a table!  They also have great soups and sandwiches, some served on Montreal-style bagels.  The Urban has a good selection of wines and beers on tap.

Our favourite pizza place is Pomodori at 83 Hampton Road in Rothesay (http://www.pomodori.com/Pomodori/Home.html).  The restaurant cooks all its pizza in a wood-fired oven, and all ingredients are as local and organic as possible.  Two types of pizza are offered: Pomadoro (tomato) and Bianca (white) – prices range from $8 to $13 each depending on toppings.  We usually get one of each and share them.  For the red: the Con Carne with Italian sausage, bacon and pepperoni.  For the white: the Chicken Pesto with feta and homemade pesto.  These are traditional Italian thin crust pizzas – the dough does not overpower the taste of the toppings.  For dessert, there’s homemade gelato and/or biscotti, which you can chase with a shot of espresso if you like.  Pomodori is also licensed with many local offerings on the beer list – the fittings aren’t fancy – wine is served in juice glasses.  While you eat, there is a large screen on the wall with a slide slow running – sometimes local photos, sometimes info on local food.  A few months ago, Pomodori introduced a rewards program for regulars like us, Casa di Pomodori – you get a reward for every four pizzas you buy.  Jim and I will celebrate our 2nd Anniversary at Pomodori on Sunday night – I’m going to try their Spinach Salad – they put spiced pecans in theirs!  Yummy…can’t wait!

2 Comments

Filed under food, tourism, travel