Monday, August 20, 2007

Chinese Lantern Festivities


Greetings from Toronto!

I've invested in some pretty extensive body armour. Don't worry, Chil is as mild mannered as ever and I'm in no physical danger: it's all about the hockey! I had my first 'power skating' lesson on Monday, was easily the worst skater in the class which I guess means I've got the most to gain out if it. The group I play with will start again, probably in September and I hope to be able to skate backwards by then.


We went back to see the Blue Jays last weekend, this time to see them play the mighty New York Yankees , who are also local rivals. Tension was high amongst the 40,000 at the Rogers Center. The Yankees are the Man U of baseball and there were as many supporters in pinstripes as there were supporting the home team. There was a 'bench emptying' fight when the Yankee's best hitter "A-Rod" got a pitch aimed at him and another when the Yankees pitcher did the same later on! Despite these fractious activities on the field home fans sit with away fans with no hint of hostilities, women and children need not fear for even hearing abusive chants and the only real danger is the hot, hot, blazing sunshine.

Torontonians are a pretty law abiding bunch, most folk duly walked on that grass!

Last night we went to the truly amazing (annual) Chinese lantern festival. I'd expected the lanterns to be pretty, and at least the size of a large pumpkin, but actually...

...they were enourmous, including dragon-boats housing lantern-soldier navys...

...more dragons...floating pagodas...

...towering giants...

...armies of soldiers...


...and armies of pandas!


As well as a depiction of Baghdad!

I guess it's because the winters are hard here but these Torontonians really know how to make the best of the summer.

And no finer way to round off a weekend than a BBQ. You know you are at frenchman's BBQ when you are served goats cheese brushetta and your host cannot be seperated from his bottle of red! Our host St├ęphane is on the left...



Good news: I (finally) got accepted to a Master of Education program at the University of Toronto. I'm anxiously hoping and waiting for a study permit from the immigration people but if that is ok I will start in September.

Otherwise it's all good here. Chil is thrilled we've got a bed to put our matress on (as of this afternoon) and our flat is starting to look like a home.

Good luck Pete with your new job in Munich. I hope you managed to get the Skype phone working, and what's your Skype name?

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