Our friends Meena and Anil are visiting us from Hong Kong and we took them out to the Peasant Cookery, a favorite Exchange District restaurant of ours. The window ledges are decorated with artistic fowl sculptures in wood or ceramics and jars of canned fruits and vegetables.The Peasant Cookery boasts that it offers ‘real food from the land’ and we knew from our past visits that the food would be excellent and the service friendly.
We decided to order five different dishes from the eclectic menu and share them all. Our meal was first rate.
A beet salad with toasted seeds, goat cheese, arugula and a caramelized honey vinaigrette dressing
Tourtiere- a French meat pie with thick cut fries
aged cheddar gnocchi with sun dried tomato, spinach, red onion, piquillo peppers and basil oilLightly breaded mahi, mahi with fresh vegetables
and bread pudding with Guinness ice-cream and a caramel sauce for dessert.Despite his look of concern in this photo our waiter was attentive and very pleasant and earned extra bonus marks from us when my husband asked him who his favorite Winnipeg band was and he replied, “Royal Canoe,” the band our son plays in. After dinner we were off to the Trappist Monastery in St. Norbert to see this years’ Shakespeare in the Ruins production of The Comedy of Errors. It was a near perfect night. The rain held off and it was just cool and windy enough to keep the mosquitoes at bay. We had warm blankets provided by the theatre troupe. We moved around the monastery grounds to see the different scenes from the play. It was done in such an entertaining fashion, the humor bawdy and the acting a bit ‘over the top’ in a good way. The actors made it so easy to follow the rather complicated plot of mistaken identity that near the end of the play when it was revealed that identical twins had been mixed up throughout the drama, a little boy about three or four years old in the audience blurted out, “Why there’s two of them.” Even he understood the plot resolution. The Peasant Cookery staff and Shakespeare in the Ruins company helped us show off our city to our Hong Kong friends in first class style.
Other related posts……
Shakespeare in the Ruins- 2012
Are You Speaking English
Devour the District
I laughed. I cried. I know that’s a cliché but it’s what happened yesterday when we attended the play Kim’s Convenience at the Manitoba Theatre Centre. Kim is a Korean teacher who immigrated to Canada as a young married man to make a better life for his family. He buys a convenience store in a Toronto neighbourhood and spends his life behind the counter.
But Kim knows the store is not what his life is all about. “This store is not my story,” he says to his children. “You are my story.” That was one of the lines that brought tears to my eyes.
Mr. Kim and His Daughter- Photo Winnipeg Free Press
Kim’s children’s stories have not turned out as he hoped. His son ends up in trouble with the law, has a fight with his father, and runs away from home with all the money from the store safe. Now married with a son of his own and working at a dead-end job in the car rental business he has maintained his relationship with his mother but he and his Dad are estranged. Kim’s daughter is 30, a professional photographer who can’t afford to live on her own and isn’t married.
One morning a real estate developer offers Kim a bundle for his convenience store. Should he sell it and retire or is there still a chance one of his children will want the business? As the family goes through the day we are treated to a window on their lives.
The Kim Family
I think the reason the audience laughs so often, and becomes so engaged with the play is because as they observe the family’s interactions they see their own family. Whether they are of Korean, Polish, Ukrainian, Jewish or Mennonite origin they recognize characteristics of their own families in the Kims. They see their own grandfathers and fathers in Mr. Kim’s old-fashioned ways and pride in the ‘old country.’ They see their own kids in the Kim children who are having trouble deciding what they want in life and their mothers and grandmothers in Mrs. Kim’s steadfast love and loyalty to her family.
The play is only on for a few more days. Go and see it. You’ll laugh. You’ll cry.
Other posts about plays………
Confessions of A Fairy’s Daughter
Winnipeg Fringe Festival
A Mid Summer Night’s Dream on a Mid Summer Afternoon
I’ve been getting to know St. Cecilia. We have this great painting of her at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. It is by Giuseppe Puglia and was painted in 1630. St. Cecilia is the patron saint of music and in this painting she has turned from her violin to talk to the cherub beside her holding some sheet music.
Then on November 22 we went to hear the Winnipeg Singers in a concert called Happy Birthday Ben! Love Cecilia. It featured four pieces of music written in honor of St. Cecilia by composer Benjamin Britten. Turns out Benjamin and the patron saint of music were both born on November 22 although Cecilia was born in the second century and Benjamin Britten in 1913.
Lots of other composers besides Benjamin Britten have written music celebrating St. Cecilia and the Winnipeg Singers performed some of their pieces too including works by Purcell, Gounod and Victor Mio as well as a special Hymn to St. Cecilia composed by Michael McKay just for the Winnipeg Singers concert.
St. Cecilia Altar Piece by Raphael
A verse in the Hymn to St. Cecilia composed by Benjamin Britten with words by W. H. Auden celebrates the role the venerated woman plays in musicians’ lives.
Blessed Cecilia, appear in visions
To all musicians, appear and inspire:
Translated Daughter, come down and startle
Composing mortals with immortal fire.
Other posts about art and music………
Landscapes for the End of Time
The Forty Part Motet
Other posts about the Winnipeg Singers
A Handel Meat Pie
This month I went to hear Winnipeg musician Nathan Rogers give a concert featuring the songs of his famous father Stan Rogers at the West End Culutral Centre. It was a great show! I did a post on my blog What Next about it called Nathan Rogers: A Family Story That Tugs at Your Heart Strings. Why not check it out?