Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Yesterday it finally snowed! While we didn't have a White Christmas this year, it was a pleasant surprise to look out the window yesterday and see big fluffy snowflakes dancing around. Today the sky is blue, clear, and bright but you never never - maybe I will get snowed in and be forced to drink hot chocolate and watch movies all day. Hey, I'm on vacation - I can do that anyway gwahaha :-)

This delicious, super fresh salad is from Seoga & Cook, one of my favourite restaurants in my area. It is accompanied by garlic-y shrimp fried rice - enough rice to be shared by two or even three (very small) people. One of my goals is to cook shrimp fried rice at home and have it taste 1/3rd as good as this. My bf and I have made the attempt a couple of times but it's harder than it seems. And the salad? It is miiine, aaaaall mine...and my bf usually eats the corn. Corn is extremely popular here. Even on pizza.

Other sustenance - books! I want to mention a couple of books that I read in 2011. These were page turners that I couldn't tear my eyes from. First up - North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell. After reading Wives and Daughters I couldn't wait to read more by this fabulous author. Her writing is lovely - elegant, full of truth, and all about everyday life and relationships though never mundane or predictable. Her characters are fully formed and they sparkle with life and their own independent thoughts. Her female characters are especially interesting - intelligent, thoughtful, sensitive, and full of deep feeling. And of course I fell in love with Mr. John Thornton...I think he is similar to Mr. Darcy in some ways but much more interesting, intelligent, and admirable. Gaskell also manages to present major societal issues, such as the clashes between different classes and the desperation of the poor in a human way that gives us a close-up view of the goings on rather than discussing the issue theoretically. Does that make sense? When I read books, what I care about most are the characters and their personalities and relationships and feelings. Gaskell's characters are simply brilliant. You can't help but feel along with them.

The other book I'll mention is The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. This one did not have real flesh and blood characters, but it did have magic and an incredible atmosphere. This book transported me to a beautiful, fascinating, stylish place and I was very happy to go along. Hooray for magic!

2012 = reading more books!!! I only read a handful last year since I was adjusting to a new country and a new job and now I am sooo hungry for books!


  1. If you liked North and South (how could one not?!), you should definitely track down the BBC miniseries. It's very well done, and the actor who played Mr. Thornton is HOT. Just make sure you don't confuse it with the American civil war story miniseries of the same name...

    I read a whole bunch of books this year. I recommend:

    -Never Let Me Go & The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro

    -The Buddha of Suburbia by Hanif Kureishi

    -The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon

    Well, that's a good start :)

  2. I'm watching the BBC miniseries for the second time now...Richard Armitage right? From Robin Hood hehehe :-)

    I was hoping you'd give me some book recommendations, thank you!!!

    Oh, I also want to try a Haruki Murakami book. Any thoughts on which one I should start with?

  3. YES! Haruki Murakami is amazing. I would recommend you start with either Wild Sheep Chase (and its sequel Dance Dance Dance), or Sputnik Sweetheart.

    He writes about modern alienation, loneliness, and longing...and his writing is often surreal, kind of magical realism. I hope you enjoy!