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« Heather's New Time Sink | Main | Deck The Halls, And The Lawns, And the Garage »

w November 28, 2007

A La Recherche du Temps Perdu

Today's Proustian moment brought to you by the good people at Quaker Foods. I was giving the kids breakfast and kept smelling the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. No, it wasn't cow manure, honestly, people. It took me a while but I finally realized that Bean's maple & brown sugar oatmeal smelled exactly like the Food Hall at the fair, because it, of course, was redolent with all things maple, particularly maple sugar candy and maple fudge. Maple sugar candy, people. You have not had a sugar rush to the brain until you have eaten said, I assure you.

Every year in elementary school we would be taken on a field trip to the RAWF. Rawf! Sorry. Anyway, it remains to this day one of my fondest memories of childhood; not least because I would now totally whore myself out for maple sugar candy. However. There was also something utterly comforting about coming in out of the frigid weather into this bustling, warm, faintly farmy smelling arena, seeing all the animals we city kids kind of sort of knew existed, eating candy apples, seeing the butter sculptures (shit you not, butter sculptures -- impressive waste of butter, let me tell you), getting a day off school to do so...and eating all things maple. I'll grant you that there a ton of crappy things about Canadian winters, and I am heartily glad I never have to experience them again without a choice being made, but there are a precious few that will always remain close to my heart, and "The Royal" is definitely near the top. For the record, the other ones are cross country skiing essentially out the front door, hot chocolate after ice skating at an OUTDOOR rink, and Christmas with snow.

So here's a question for any and all of my northern or formerly so readers (all three of you!): what fond memories of wintery childhood do you have? Those of you who grew up in sunny California or similar can just bite it for today :)

by at November 28, 2007 11:21 AM | TrackBack Comments

I remember sitting in the hot hot sun and basking in its warmth. Also, being rained out of Disneyland in January. Yay for So Cal.

Posted by: Julie on November 28, 2007 12:49 PM

Ah, Julie. Rappelez-vous...mordez-moi!!

Posted by: Heather on November 28, 2007 12:54 PM

Ah, I don't even have to remember -- I'm experiencing it now! Sitting warm and tucked up under a blanket inside, while a blizzard rages outside!

Also, skating on the Canal (in Ottawa) and eating beaver tails and drinking hot cider while my toes slowly freeze solid. And the warmth of a hot bath afterward...

But then, I unashamedly love snow and cold and winter; good thing, since I'm living in Sudbury right now!

Posted by: Aven on November 28, 2007 4:57 PM

With all due respect to those of you who get 365 days of sunshine, I firmly believe that the sun is never so bright as when it is glinting off of a chest-high snowbank. Those sunny, blindingly white, winter days are a wonderful memory from the True North (Thunder Bay) that even Toronto can't match.

Posted by: Mary on November 30, 2007 9:43 AM
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