Tuesday, November 6, 2012

November is indeed here

Tuesday November 6, 12:18 p.m.

Well, last year Winter had decided not to show up. I guess as a form of meteorological apology, Winter this year has shown up at the door a whole lot earlier. Last Friday, as I was teaching my last lesson for my latest stint at the school, one of my students told me that the flakes were indeed coming down. And such was the case yesterday.

No classes to sub for this week, but I decided to spend the morning downtown. Got to Yonge & Bloor at about 7:30 where the skies were gloomy and some flakes were wafting down. Commuters were tightly bound up as they carried their Timmys and Starbucks. Yup, Winter may have indeed arrived.

Since the Metro Reference Library just a block north of Yonge & Bloor didn't open til 9:30 a.m., I decided to spend a couple of hours at the Starbucks just between those two points. It was still plenty empty when I got my Latte. I've always liked how some of the branches here in Toronto style their interiors as something a bit more old-style. Makes them even more appealing during the Xmas season; perhaps they may even negate the sticker shock of the high prices. The Tokyo branches of Starbucks don't really follow that rule although they had been very generous to allow me to teach my private students there over the years.

Spent my three hours at the library. Raymond Moriyama really did a good job with the place. Even after 30 years, the place still has a lot of attitude and atmosphere, although the 5th floor is still undergoing renovations. And I know that if I don't wanna work at home, I can take my translation stuff down there since there is free Wi-Fi. If I get there at opening time, finding an office, so to speak, will not be a problem. Ended up reading a book on TV theme songs.

Was feeling a mite peckish by the time noon came around, so I left the library and started searching for a lunch place. But of course, everyone else was as well, so my trips to the food courts near Yonge and Bay stations were pretty futile. However, I did find one place that didn't seem to get much traffic. It was on the outskirts of the Bay food court and had all the ambiance of a bowling alley concession stand. I ordered the burger and fries. The volume was there and the people manning the place were nice and friendly, but I think that show on The Food Network, "Restaurant: Impossible" might want to take a look. No huge problems with the burger (although the cheese inside seemed a little too alien), but the fries were obviously from a frozen food section and perhaps beyond their best-by date. Mind you, a couple of customers who came after me sounded like regulars, so who am I to judge?