Category Archives: Winnipeg

Wined and Dined at a New Restaurant

At the Chaise Lounge with my friend Meena.

We’ve had house guests for the last two weeks and before they left Winnipeg they wanted to treat us to dinner at a restaurant of our choice.  We decided to pick a restaurant we had driven by hundreds of times and always thought we would like to try.

The Chaise Lounge has a beautiful walkway lined with plants and flowers.  We ate on the porch, but a peek inside showed it was a little more elegant.  The food was good and we had an enjoyable time visiting with our guests one last time.  

Meena is to the far left in this photo with my teaching colleagues in the English department in Hong Kong

We got to know Meena and Anil when we lived in Hong Kong and Meena was our colleague 

Meena far right was a member of our Hong Kong book club

and a member of our book club.  Meena and Anil now have children living in Winnipeg so they make visits here several times a year and stay with us. It has been such a treat to maintain our connection with these Hong Kong friends.

For some reason Dave was playing hide and seek.

We all had different entrees at the restaurant and received a bonus dessert because service had been a little slow.  Not that we minded. It gave us more time to visit. 

Other posts………….

Hong Kong House Guests

Sculpture Garden Stroll 

Introducing Visitors from Hong Kong and India to Mennonites

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My Childhood Reading Heaven

Revisiting the Good Will store on Princess Street

The GoodWill store on Princess Street in Winnipeg was a place of wonder and delight for me as a child. The store has changed somewhat since I used to visit there in the 1960s but one thing hasn’t changed. On the far wall just where they’ve always been, are rows and rows and rows of books from the floor to the ceiling. The shelves of the Good Will Store were one of my main sources for reading material when I was a child. We lived in Steinbach which didn’t have a public library till 1973, the year I turned twenty. Our Steinbach church didn’t have a library yet, in fact we didn’t even have a building. We met for services in a school basement.  The old Kornelson School where I first attended classes in Steinbach didn’t have a library either and Steinbach didn’t have a book store.  Perhaps because I had been read to often when I was a child, I grew up loving books and read voraciously. On family trips my Mom would tell me to get my nose out of my book and look at the scenery. Here I am setting off for my first day of school with a book in hand. I could read before I started grade one. So what was a girl who loved to read and had no access to books in her home town to do? My reading salvation lay at the Good Will store.  On trips to Winnipeg my Mom often made a stop at Good Will and patiently waited while I picked out books to read. Books were 5 cents each.  On my birthday my Grandma and Grandpa always sent me a one dollar bill in my birthday card. That was 20 books! Should I choose a Nancy Drew, Cherry Ames, Box Car Children, Elsie Dinsmore, Bobbsey Twins, or another book in the Anne of Green Gables series or Little House series? I was in heaven in the GoodWill Store! All those books! The Good Will store on Princess Street offered me reading salvation as a child. I’m glad kids today have many more options for gaining access to books. 

Other posts……..

Who Do Family Stories Belong To?

Agatha Christie’s First Trip on the Orient Express

Lesson Not Required

 

 

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Filed under Books, Childhood, Winnipeg

Canoes

the common forks

What could be more Canadian than a canoe? Just after entering The Common, the refurbished new eating area at The Forks you can look up and see  a trio of fun sculptures by Winnipeg artist Jordan Van Sewell. I noticed them for the first time last week when I met my friend Esther at The Forks for a walk and lunch. canoe 1

Nineteen diverse and interesting characters represent Canada’s people, animals, symbols and strengths. Canoes are certainly a very Canadian mode of transportation. They were invented by indigenous Canadians and played a big role in the building of our country as they transported furs and supplies and people. The sculptures are inclusive. After looking at the three canoes closely I think every Canadian could identify with at least one of the characters in some way. I like it that the artist included animals too because co-existing on this earth with all God’s creatures is important. canoe 3

The waters each canoe moves through are different.  Here the canoe is gliding down frothy night waters. Check out the poppy in the first character’s lapel who I think may be a miner holding a shovel. There’s a musician perhaps of Italian descent paddling with his guitar and the polar bear has a paddle too. canoe 2

If you visit The Forks you are sure to encounter a wide diversity of people. Jordan Van Sewell’s artwork Canoes represents that so well. If you’ve never noticed these sculptures check them out the next time you are at The Forks. 

Other posts………

A Waterfall at the Library

Katherina Vermette on the Wall

The Guess Who on the Wall

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Filed under Art, Canada, Winnipeg

Bark in the Park

We decided on the spur of the moment to go to the Goldeyes game on Saturday night. We just live a couple blocks  from the stadium and thought we’d pick up a couple of tickets at the box office just before the game.  Were we ever surprised to see a very l…..oooong line up of people waiting to get tickets.  The reason the game was so popular?  It was Bark in the Park night.  Fans were encouraged to bring their pooches to the game and they were lined up to get their dogs’ complimentary tickets and their ‘doggie bags’ of treats. 

I found it fascinating to ‘dog watch’ and ‘people watch’ as we waited for a chance to buy our tickets.  It was interesting to note the many different kinds of dogs, the many different ways people interacted with their pets and the way the dogs interacted with each other.

The Goldeyes were trying to set a world record for most dogs at a ball game established by the Chicago White Soxs last year at 1,123.  Saturday night the Goldeyes only had 852 dogs registered, but that was still an awful lot of dogs. I’ve been to lots of Goldeyes games but this one was certainly the most unusual.

Other posts…….. 

Once in a Blue Moon

I Slept With a Champion Last Night

Remembering Rudy York

 

 

 

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Filed under Sports, Winnipeg

There’s More to the Shakespeare in the Ruins Site Than I Thought

Trappist Monastery Provincial Heritage Park St. NorbertI’ve been to the former Trappist Monastery site in St. Norbert many times to watch productions of Shakespeare in the Ruins. But I didn’t know anything about the history of the place. I also didn’t know that behind the area where the theatre productions are held there is a garden and cultural centre.  One of my Winnipeg Art Gallery colleagues helps to maintain the beautiful green space around that cultural centre and she told me about it recently.

Ready for the play to begin

So when we attended the Shakespeare in the Ruins production of Romeo and Juliet on Friday night I made a point at intermission to go and find the cultural centre and its surrounding garden.  

The current St. Norbert Arts Centre was once a guest house for the Our Lady of the Prairies monastery which was established in 1892 for about forty Trappist monks fleeing from religious persecution in France. At the monastery they ran a bakery, greenhouse, sawmill and blacksmith shop.  They had bees and cows and sold meat, milk, cheese and honey. They also devoted themselves to prayer and contemplation. So it is fitting that the garden around the former guest house is called a meditation garden. It is a beautiful place to walk and think. 

The lilac bushes in the garden smelled wonderful

 I was all alone in the garden during intermission on Friday night. It was lovely and quiet. A century ago it was a quiet  garden too, because the Trappist monks only communicated by sign language.

I realized after reading more about the St. Norbert Arts Centre on their website that there is also a vegetable garden, orchard, ceremonial grounds with two sweat lodges and kitchen building which I didn’t see. I’ll have to look for those on my next visit. 

Other posts………

Dorothy’s Garden

Plants That Talked to Me

Home Grown in Newfoundland

 

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Filed under Religion, Theatre, Winnipeg

A Waterfall on the Library

I walk past Winnipeg’s Millennium Library several times a week, but yesterday I happened to look up at just the right spot and noticed for the first time that there was a waterfall on the library.  himmer waterfall winnipeg

It was cascading off a ledge on the side of the building and glimmered and sparkled in the sunshine.  It appeared to be moving and flowing.   When I got home I found out the artist who made it out of plywood, plastic and sequins is Theresa Himmer. Theresa is from Denmark but works in Reykjavik, kind of fitting since Manitoba has such a significant Icelandic population. 

waterfall theresa himmerThe art work is called Waterfall #2 because a similar piece by Himmer called Waterfall#1 was installed in Reykjavik in 2006 but was dismantled in 2014. The artist says it “playfully investigates the relationship between artificial and natural landscapes. “

waterfall artOne of the things I love about Winnipeg’s downtown is all the interesting public art. I’ve sometimes said living here is like living in an art gallery. Himmer’s Waterfall#2 is a cool new addition to that art gallery’s collection.  You can see a video of the waterfall moving here. 

Other posts…….

I’m Living in an Art Gallery

The Millennium Library

Katherena Vermette on the Wall

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A Blast From the Past Closes

On Monday the Winnipeg Free Press carried a story about the closing of The Windmill Restaurant.  It is right across the street from the MCC Thrift store where I volunteer and so I’ve had lunch there several times.

It might be the juke boxes, the formica tables or the red vinyl leather booth seats …
it might be the bar stools or old-fashioned milk shake machine…

but when you step into the friendly atmosphere at the Windmill Restaurant at 518 Selkirk Avenue  you’ll think you’re back in the 1950s. 
The menu is basic and economical. The perogies are to die for but when I visited I usually opted for a hearty homemade soup and toasted tomato sandwich. 
The decor is kitschy a display of Mexican sombreros

A hand carved welcome plaque
and this fellow guarding the salad menu.
A mural painted on the side of the restaurant gives a glimpse of a street car and Selkirk Avenue’s glory days in the 1930s -1950sand another mural takes us back even 
further to the late 1800s and ox cart days. Scenes from the movies Capote and Shall We Dance were filmed in the Windmill. How’s that for a claim to fame? The restaurant has hosted the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Richard Gere, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Catherine Keener. The Windmill Restaurant offered a blast from the past along with good food. Many people will be sad to see its doors close. 

Other posts…….

A Manitoba Boy Learns to Brew Beer in Korea

Gender Neutral Washrooms

The Real Meal Deal

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Filed under Restaurants, Winnipeg