I apologize for not being on line this week.  I haven’t had access to the internet all week until now. I promise this weekend to get ‘caught up’ with all my blogger buddies.

I wrote this one a few days ago, after a nice meal.

I am in Stratford Ontario for my annual holiday. I have been coming to Stratford every year since 1982.  It is a comfort to see stores, eat at the same restaurants, and do the same routine, year in and year out.  Like most people who have annual rituals, I want things to be constant. Nothing should change.  Not surprisingly, things have changed here; it is rather haughty to hope a town will stand still x 20 years. Happily the ambience of the place remains. My favorite book store may have have changed location (sometime in the mid-90s) but the same fellows man the cash register – I joke they haven’t moved since I last saw them the year before.

We attend a certain pub. It opened in the early 90s, and has been more or less stayed the same. Even the owner hasn’t aged. On the menu is bruschetta. It is without doubt the best I have ever had – enough said. Perhaps it is because we visit in late August when local tomatoes are available. Whatever it is, the simple ingredients come together to make a found fit for the gods. I order it every year. I look forward to this dish (with a glass of red wine) the way other people look forward to Thanksgiving turkey.

This year it was not on the menu; apparently the victim of too many years and time to try something new. Intellectually I was OK with this, but the Child within me felt like Christmas had been canceled or somebody announced we weren’t going to have gingerbread cookies this year – we’ve had them for 50 years now, so let’s have oatmeal shall we?

After 10 years or so of showing up/being known and (hopefully) being a polite patron, I spoke with the owner.  I acknowledged progress, yet mourned the passing of bruschetta.  She soon brought out a plate made special for me – bruschetta. Despite her apologies the tomatoes were not good this year, my taste buds moaned with pleasure from it.

So I had my bruschetta after all. August was saved. I have the satisfaction of living another year well. I am back in Canada. I see the shows.

And I had tomatoes and goat cheese on bread, with a glass of red wine.

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