I enjoy Friday, and not because it precedes Saturday.
On Friday I grab a bus, ride downtown and spend a good part of the day in the St. Paul University library researching a writing project. Today I walked about 5 km–from the bus-stop below Parliament Hill to the Saudi Embassy (to get 2 copies of the Qur’an), then along the Rideau Canal to the university. It was a spectacular morning, and I sipped a cup of robust Peruvian coffee while I picked my way along the sidewalks crammed with Ottawans on their way to work. I discovered some urban nooks and crannies I hadn’t seen before and, later, I ate lunch on the banks of the Rideau River, just east of the library. The branches of the weeping willow caressed the water in the breeze while I sat on a bench and enjoyed another new discovery…
Across the street from the university there is an Iranian grocer who sells fresh samosas–Middle Eastern empanadas–and spinach pies. Today I had the latter, which is a 12 cm- square of pastry that is roughly the consistency of flat bread, but folded upward in four directions so there is an opening in the top where the stuffing peeks out–tender spinach mixed with seasoning and crumbled feta cheese. The young man behind the counter, a great salesman, heated it for me and then treated me to a honey ball and a date. The fruit. Wow–I’ve only ever had dried dates before, but the fresh ones are addictive. He might as well have said, “First one’s free…”
I ran out of the store when I saw the racks of baklava–the temptation was simply too much to endure.