Saturday, June 3, 2017

A treatful day

A good conversation about literature and a walk in the sunshine with a friend are two of my ingredients for a perfect day.  Here is  my very literary friend Andre with a batch of peonies that begged to be photographed.
Later,  my friend Ros and I shared dessert, an essential part of a truly great day. Ros said it was the best chocolate cake she had ever eaten.

That cake. The green swirls on the plate are pistachio sauce. The white section in the middle is a marvelous light coconut something.

The program for the play Ros and I saw in the evening at the  Pacific Theatre on Granville, about two feuding Irish farm families. What a cultured day!

Everybody has their own recipe for what makes up a perfect day, but mine would have to include friends, food, literature and nature. Friday was one of those days for me.

Over a coffee on Main Street, my Simon Fraser University friend Andre read me the excellent paper he will be presenting to a conference in England on George Meredith’s influence on Virginia Woolf’s To the Lighthouse, and we talked Meredith, Woolf and Annie Dilliard. When we left the coffee shop, the mid-spring flowers were bursting with colour, as if they could hardly restrain themselves, in all the gardens along the way.

Later, my friend Ros and I shared tacos and an amazing grilled avocado at the Heirloom vegetarian restaurant on Granville, along with a double-layer chocolate cake. It was, said Ros, the best chocolate cake she had ever had.

Then to the nearby Pacific Theatre, where it was back to literature with a tightly professional version of Outside Mullingar, a sad-funny rural-Irish play written by Moonstruck and Doubt playwright John Patrick Shanley. We laughed, I cried – it doesn’t take much – and we emerged, subtly transformed, into a gentle June evening.


I will remember Andre and Meredith; Ros and chocolate cake, and a blaze of peonies and irises in the sunshine. Friends, stories, food and flowers -- my version of  the best kind of day.

On a sunny day like Friday, these blue irises were positively glowing, a little raft of blue in a sea of green.
A closer look at those peonies. 


I'm not sure what the rhubarb-like leaves are, but they're a nice contrast to the purple alliums that lined this front garden.

The alliums. I love them, but each bulb costs a whack, and it's hard to persuade myself to buy enough to make an effective display. Obviously this gardener thinks they're worth it.