Tag Archives: Tim Horton’s

The Jolie Tour, Part 2…Eat, Drink and Be Bitchy…

This is the second installment of a series begun yesterday…please read Part One here to get up to speed…[The Jolie says to “Make it snappy!”…she’s hungry].

It’s against the law here not to “go to Tim Hortons for coffee” (you don’t actually have to drink coffee…”going for coffee” is an activity).  Tim Hortons is a Canadian institution started by a hockey player as a “summer job” back in the 1960’s before athletes were paid millions of dollars to play.  Unfortunately, Tim was killed in a car accident in 1974, and didn’t get to see the huge success his little coffee shop is today (at the time of his death, there were 40 franchises).  Today, many Canadian cities have multiple Tims locations …when I lived there a few years ago, Moncton, New Brunswick, had more Tims per capita than any other city!  Every spring, Tims has a popular contest called “Roll Up the Rim to Win” where you look for a prize under the rim of your paper cup…they give away cars, TV’s, and free coffee and donuts (the last two things are all I’ve ever won!).

Since The Jolie’s little tummy was growling, we took her to the Lansdowne Tims location…after telling us what they wanted, Anna and Brianna escaped to the safety of the Shoppers Drug Mart, preferring to shop for shampoo instead of being seen in public with The Jolie and their Action Figure Tourist Guide parents (we’d dropped Hope off on the West Side at her dad’s, and Devin stayed home because there wasn’t room in the car for everybody…what a generous gesture!).  Before going in, we asked The Jolie what she wanted.  “I’ll have an Espresso Macchiato with a quarter inch of milk foam and chocolate sprinkles on the top!” she ordered.

“Whoa, baby,” I said.  “Back up the truck!  This isn’t a fancy L.A. coffee place…the people who work here wear hairnets and sturdy shoes, and usually aren’t third-rate actresses!  They call everybody, ‘Dear’.  You can have coffee or tea or hot chocolate…if you’re good, I’ll get them to put a French Vanilla flavour shot in your coffee!  What do you want to eat?”

The Jolie thought for a minute before answering, “Get me a smoked salmon on rye, sliced very thin with the crusts cut off, and just a couple of capers on top.”  Her face fell when she saw the look on mine.  “Really…they don’t have that either?”

“When you’re in the Maritimes, Dear, ‘Capers’ are people who hail from a part of Nova Scotia called Cape Breton.  They get mad if you try to spread them on a sandwich, or criticize their funny accents.”  I took pity on The Jolie: “How about a nice Chicken Club on a whole wheat baguette?”  I hoped that throwing a French word in there made it sound fancier (I also hoped I wouldn’t have this trouble again).  It worked.

“I suppose that’s all right,” The Jolie pouted.  I dropped her in my purse, and we went in and ordered our food.  I paid with my Tims card (yay…I had more left on it than I thought!), and we carried the plastic tray to the table.  Jim glanced surreptitiously around before I pulled The Jolie out of her hiding place and set her on the table.

The Jolie engages in the great Canadian pastime...coffee at Tims...

In between bites of her sandwich, The Jolie found it amusing to yell “Barista!” repeatedly.  The girls behind the counter kept ducking to escape her wrath (I heard one of them ask another, “Is that Spanish for double-double?”)!  We explained to The Jolie that there is no “table service” at Tims…if she wanted something, she’d have to go up and ask for it!  She passed.

We’d gotten The Jolie a couple of Timbits for dessert.  Timbits are donut holes…Tims makes a fortune selling them for 15 cents each.  The Jolie demanded to know why we were feeding her “leftovers.”  She changed her tune once that Honey Dip hit her lips…

After lunch, we gathered up the girls and continued our tour.  The next stop was the Saint John City Market, which has been in operation in its current location since 1876.  When the Market was built in the late nineteenth century, Saint John was one of the world’s leading shipbuilding centers, and the roof of the Market is modelled after an upside-down ship’s keel.  The kids made themselves scarce again while we took our photos.

The Jolie looks down over the City Market...

The Market is open year-round every day but Sundays.  The day starts at 7:30 a.m. with the ringing of a large bell at one end, and finishes the same way at 6 p.m., except on Saturdays when the Market closes at five.  In addition to fruits and vegetables, meats, cheeses and baked goods, the Market is a cornucopia of items ranging from local crafts, giftware and souvenirs to ethnic food from various locales.  There is also entertainment on the weekends, although we got there too late in the afternoon to see it.  The Jolie offered to do “a reading” but they didn’t have a mike stand short enough for her (which is a good thing, because not a lot of people would be interested in hearing an excerpt from her upcoming book, Pezed Off…The Jolie World Tour!).

Dulse from Grand Manan is something a lot of tourists take home with them when they visit New Brunswick:

The Jolie in the dulse bin...

Apparently, The Jolie was confused about what you’re supposed to do with dulse (and also has trouble reading upside down), because before I could stop her, she was doing this:

The Jolie exploring the benefits of dulse...

“What do you mean, you eat it?  I thought it was a beauty treatment!” she sputtered, as I hauled The Jolie out of the bag.  “We pay big bucks for seaweed at my spa in L.A.!”  She spent the next hour removing bits of purple vegetation from her hair…

Be sure to come back tomorrow for the exciting conclusion of The Jolie’s visit to Saint John, New Brunswick!

*Disclaimer: This post is entertainment and any resemblance to living people (except Jim and I and our kids) is purely coincidental.  I also didn’t eat the blue pill!

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Top Ten Reasons To Live in Canada…

This post was inspired by my friend, Renée, over at Life in the Boomer Lane: http://lifeintheboomerlane.wordpress.com/2010/08/25/the-best-country-in-the-world-is/

Newsweek rated Canada #7 in the world as “best country.”  I think it should have been #1!

For those of you who don’t know my background, I was born in Ohio, but my family moved to Ontario when I was 8 years old (1969).  So for those of  you who aren’t math wizards, I’ve spent the last 41 years living in Canada.  I can say in all sincerity that I’m never leaving! 

Here (with tongue planted firmly in cheek) are my Top Ten Reasons To Live in Canada (in random order as I think of them!):

1. It’s probably the only place in the world where you can bump into someone, and they will apologize to you.  Canadians are the politest people ever (unless they’re drunk -don’t bump into someone holding a bottle of Molson!).

2. Geography lessons are shorter – we only have 10 provinces and 3 territories to learn the names of.  Rivers and lakes are often given Indian names, while cities and their streets are usually named after dead guys or places in England.

3. Our paper money comes in pretty colours – it makes it easier to figure out what you’re giving the clerk at the Great Canadian Dollar Store.  Our dollar coin is called a “loonie” for the bird that’s pictured on it (it’s not a reference to our Queen who’s featured on the front, although it may apply to certain members of her family).

4. Our young men are not required to register for military service on their 18th birthdays…however, they must have worked at least two shifts serving coffee at their local Tim Horton’s outlets.  If they do decide to join the military, they are probably going to be sent over as peacekeepers to some country the Americans have invaded.

5. We elect our governments in a single day…no foolish primaries!  Candidates campaign for about a month before the election.  Campaign costs are measured in thousands of dollars rather than millions.  Canadians have been known to elect prime ministers who didn’t look like movie stars.  The worst political scandal is likely to involve a government minister leaving sensitive documents at his girlfriend’s house (no Watergate here).

6. If one is a Canadian actor or musician, it is possible to move about freely without being constantly accosted by fans (or even recognized).  These artists have to make it south of the border before anyone here pays attention to them (sad but true)!  It’s a different story for hockey players or national news anchors…they will be mobbed wherever they go!

7. Getting sick in Canada is not likely to cause you to lose your house.  Our tax dollars ensure that no one is billed for routine medical appointments, emergency room visits, or hospital stays in semi-private rooms or wards (although cosmetic surgery or dental treatment is a whole other ball of wax!).

8. Our highway signs are in metric – a 100km/hour speed limit sounds so much faster than 60 mph doesn’t it?  We also have compulsory seat belt/motorcycle helmet laws, which often prevents injury in the event of a collision (cleanup after the accident is also quicker when you’re not peeling someone’s body parts off the pavement).

9. Since we basically have only two seasons in Canada (winter and summer), one doesn’t need nearly as much clothing.  Tanning companies make a fortune, because our summer is only three months long.  Strangely, many people wear baseball caps year-round (including women).

10. Handguns are illegal in Canada.  If you cut somebody off on the highway, they probably won’t get out and shoot you (although you could be beaten with a hockey stick!).

I invite my Canadian readers to add to this list…

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Filed under rants, self-discovery