|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.|