June 16. I'd been anticipating hearing Cassie Stocks read from Dance, Gladys, Dance, her book that won the Stephen Leacock Medal for humour. It turns out she is the first woman to win in 17 years. Yikes...we are funnier than that.
For example, just getting to the reading turned into a little adventure. Lloydminster's Arts Without Borders was hosting the reading and it's an hour trip from where I live. I'd invited a couple of like-minded friends along and had planned a nice leisurely dinner at one of the Border City's better restaurants. The best laid plans....it turned out that stopping to pick up a friend takes time as does driving across Lloydminster at rush hour. Yes, there is actually a rush hour.
The restaurant we had planned to eat at is CLOSED on a Monday. Plan B: I doive back down highway 17 and there are a lot of businesses along that stretch but restaurants are scarce. I turned around and headed back. One of my friends had spied a Papa John's. Pizza would have to do but we'd have to eat it in the car. Papa John's was take-out only. Last chance: Mary Brown's Chicken. There were tables and time was of the essence so in we went. I ordered first and grabbed one of the two tables where three people could sit together. The young man taking our orders actually brought us our food, but I'm sorry to say The Colonel isn't in much danger from Mary Brown. We ate quickly, washing the sandwiches and chicken down with root beer and diet pepsi, not our usual choices of beverage. 6:30 and because I purchased our tickets on-line, we had to pick them up before we went to the reading.
I expected the worst but then the evening went smoothly. The box office was right outside of the Black Box theatre and there were lovely snacks, fruit, cheese, desserts, even chili! We looked at one another. We should have grazed at the reading. Mary Brown was kind of repeating on me. Wine and Glornic (a drink concoction from Dance, Gladys, Dance) was on sale. Worst $4 I have spent in a while. Somehow gin, lemon juice from RealLemon, club soda and a splash of grenadine don't combine to make the refreshing beverage you might imagine. It was actually kind of nasty.
Cassie Stocks is an engaging, down-to-earth, funny person. There was a QandA kind of interview with a library staff member, reading of two excerpts and a question period. The author told us her "day" job is clerking at the Co-op in the little Saskatchewan town she has made her home. It struck a note. Small town grocery stores are invariably Co-ops.
Great conclusion to an evening that began badly.
I've been married a long time and often write about everyday events.