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Trashy in China 4.0

Food, glorious FOOD edition! Some of my fave food shots from my trips to the Middle Kingdom.
Some North Americans tend to avoid the real Chinese places… I’m not one of them.

Peking duck

VERY spicy lamb chops!

Best green beans on the planet

Dan dan noodles

100 year old eggs

Ate these bad boys!

Xiao Wang's... just behind the hotel.



Yummy... duck!

Chicken and chilies - but more chilies than chicken!

I don't remember what this was...



Szechuan pork ribs on a bridge.


Trashy in Paris… so I had better things to do…

… than sit at my laptop!

No matter.

Had a blast with my daughter in the City of Lights. Even saw some lights!

And bones. And food. And monuments, portraits, beautiful parks, amazing vistas and, and…

Paris at its finest!

And the work part of the visit was a roaring success as well! Good to see of old colleagues and learn some new things.

Now it’s on the road back home. It’s my son’s 5th birthday today so I’m anxious to get back and give him – and my other daughter and my wife – big hugs!

Au revoir, Paris!


It was a monster…

… but my skills as an angler prevailed!

I went deep-sea fishing for the first time the other day (strike another off The List) and brought Subunit #2 with me.

Armed with sunscreen, Gravol and an intense desire to land a fish – nay, a behemoth – that would stun the good citizens of Barbados and indeed the world! We talked of how tales would be told and songs sung in the highlands and in the lowlands of the mighty battle that would surely be engaged on this fateful day!

And engage we did! There was a hit on the line! I dutifully assumed the position in the chair, clasped the handle of the rod in both of my hands and began the fight!  I looked left and right now and then during the epic battle between man and beast and couldn’t help but notice that the Captain and First Mate seemed a bit nervous. Perhaps they momentarily considering that they would, in the end, need a bigger boat.

Here I am in mid-struggle… sweat pouring from my brow and arms aching!

After what seemed to be hours, the monster tuna was landed.  Bells rang from the mainstaff as it was hoisted aboard!

Praise be to the good Captain and crew for a productive day, my fellow fisherfolk on board and a special thanks to my dear daughter for wiping the sweat from my brow and taking the pics!

And here is the monster tuna in all its glory! Do not forget that the fish is actually still 10 feet from the boat… the apparent “smallness” of the monster is but an optical illusion.


Trashy in Barbados – part I

… or is it part II? I dunno. I’m on island time now!

We arrived late Friday afternoon after being delayed by over an hour in Toronto due to the ol’ de-icing routine.

Unpack. Get essentials from shop down the street. Go for obligatory first walk on the beach… no big excitement except for the dramatic temperature change from -27 to +27.

…but on the second day – New year’s Eve – or Old Years Night, as they call it here… whatta great start to the vacay!

The surf was (and still is) quite rough in front of the Seafoam Haciendas so we wandered along the Hiway to Accra Beach where the surf was a little tamer. Kids loved it and so did we, of course. Bobbed in the water, got a few mouthfuls and eyefulls af the briny sea, and got a little burned (well, I did… the kids were wearing SPF 1,000,000, of course).

But the real hi-light of the day was to the Barbados Yacht Club where we met up with some old and dear friends for lunch! Nice setting and great food.1  Then for some great swimming on the beach directly in front of the Club. it was far calmer than either of the beaches in our corner of the island.

Around mid-afternoon, our friends brough us back to their bungalow directly situated on the beach beside the Club. We were treated to a fine authentic Bajan dinner, great conversation, great fireworks, and met some new and amazing people on the way (many, MANY thanks to Richard… who drove us back to our digs after the festivities were over… quite a detour for him and we appreciate it and hope to pay it forward someday soon ).

A great start to the new year and a great end to the old.

Thanks  G & T & J and, of course, Rufus…

Oh, and J? Yer Dad will NEVER let you forget the JR incident.


1. If ever at the Barbados Yacht Club, try the fish cakes! Incroyable!


The view from our balcony…


Back to travel log mode…

… starting tomorrow!

As has been my custom when I travel, I take a break from my political punditry, overblown opines, meandering messages, etc., etc., etc. Instead, this space turns into a travel log where I’ll talk a bit about where I am and what I’m doing; and I usually post lots of pics.

The place where we are staying claims to have wi-fi, and if they’re right, then we’ll be good to go. If not, well, you’ll likely not hear from me till I return!




Just askin’…

But, is there anyone out there who has flown in the past 50 yrs who does not know how to fasten their seatbelt prior to take off?

AND, is there anyone out there who has flown in the past 20 yrs who needs to be reminded that “for your comfort, this is a non-smoking flight”?

AND, why do airlines give out incredibly salty snacks? KNOWING that salt makes passengers thirsty and KNOWING that the fluids have to come out not long after, THUS creating line ups for the lavatory???

Can someone enlighten me?


Trashy – LIVE from Edmonton

… or at least on my way out of Edmonton…

Arrived late the other night for a day full of meetings yesterday… and leaving 36 hours later. I don’t mind these quick biz trips as long as they are worthwhile (i.e., I accomplish what I came to accomplish) and that one accepts the fact that you’re likely gonna be a bit tired on the way home.

On the first count, mission accomplished. And on the second, well, I started writing this in the cab on the way to the airport at 4:28 am and am wrapping it up in the AC lounge… but don’t feel too, too wiped.

One thought about this City before I leave: Jasper Avenue: why?


Trashy in Parry Sound

In spite of the very sad and sombre ocassion that brought subunit #2 and I to Parry Sound (and then to Mississauga in a little while), it is nice to see family again.

And, in spite of the fact that, with 2 dogs and three cats sharing a roof with me – and the resultant eye-stinging and chest constricting effects that said critters have on yours truly – it’s still nice to travel to the place of my upbringing.


Then I saw THIS on the kitchen table, and spun back into the reality that is rural Ontario.


A lot of folks voted for Gazebo Tony in these parts; maybe even (gasp) members of my own clan. This is an incredible reality that this transplanted urbanite progressive has a hard time getting his head around.


A quick post on Calgary

Yes, it has been quite cold in Cow Town for the past couple of days… but for an Ottawan, that’s no biggie… unless your colleagues want to WALK everywhere. You KNOW who you are!

Not good for my bald head, I say. The brain freeze hit layer two of my brain. But harm no done.


Anyhow, I just wanted to note a few things I have noticed in the past few days while here in Calgary.

  • If this is Calgary after the Big Boom that ended in 2008, I cannot imagine what the pre-2008 boom years skyline looked like. Cranes on high-rises abound. Construction is everywhere. This is a happening place. There is talk of replacing or upgrading the SaddleDome. I’d hate to have to find a sub-trade to do some minor work around the house.
  • Speaking of the SaddleDome… if there are any serious climbers reading this, and you are looking for a great place to train – buy hockey tickets on the 300 level. It’s as good as climbing Kilimanjaro.
  • Calgarians are confident. Right from the cab driver who crowed about the new 58 story tower (The Bow Tower) that is nearing completion (tallest building west of T.O., he said) to the clerk in the western apparel shop and everyone in between, these folks know they are in a city that is at the top of its game.
  • And prices for just about everything (except gas) reflect this burinin’ economy. Early Bird parking rates: $37 a day. A low end steak (just the steak – no sides): $38. And cab rates that are every bit as pricey as ByTown. Costly place to visit and to live.
  • I, unfortunately, did not have time to stop by and say hi to the new Mayor. Maybe next time.