Sunday, 23 March 2014

On the Third Day of Spring

Fake Flowers at Michel's

There is no spring in Canada.  This winter has been unrelenting.  

Baby it's Cold Outside, has turned out to have been an event foreshadowing the epic winter which had befallen us.  I've never been more thankful for hats, gloves, scarves, boots and all things woolen and shearling.

On the second day of spring I awoke to a chill and upon taking a peek outside the window, there appeared to be a fresh blanket of snow on the ground.  While  beautiful to look at through the window, snow in mid-march is not exactly a welcome sight.  Only two days before in a full blown case of optimism, as a result of experiencing a slightly warmer day which I naturally, but, falsely believed signalled the end of our deep freeze I was in full pining/online shopping force in preparation for spring.

My hopes were considerably dampened when, we were hit by snow.  But, one mustn't give up, one must go on.  In an effort to recuperate from the shock of freshly laden snow I sought companionship.
On that second day of spring I was spending time with some friends when I was introduced to the magical properties of an Ethiopian snack: kolo

Coffee and kolo, a traditional Ethiopian pairing.

"Just take some of this and chew on it", were the  instructions I was given. With enthusiasm I took some of this grain mixture (typically barley, chickpeas and peanuts which have been roasted and spiced), and bit.

 I was rewarded with a wonderful crunch, and chewiness with a bit of a spicy kick.  Traditionally served with coffee and often accompanied by it's friend popcorn, kolo is part of the Ethopian culture, as sort of afternoon ritual.  After some conversation, coffee and kolo, I found my spirit restored.  Laden with provisions (a container of kolo), I made my way home through the under-belly of the Canadian spring 'frost'. 

Fueled by coffee, kolo and my impatient anticipation of spring, that night I dreamt of a bohemian life in the spice markets and bazaars of the world.  I dreamt of a sub-tropic world and a mishmash of cultures I have yet to visit and of a wanderlust I have never known.



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