Sunday, July 31, 2011

The road to a friend's house is never long.

That's easy for me to say, since I didn't make the trek. But our friends, Joe and Mary, drove 3,000 km from their house in Colorado to ours in Ottawa (including across Kansas, which I have learned is the most boring drive on the planet) - and we are so glad they did.
We welcomed them to the back yard with bubbles!
Turns out, bubbles are kind of tricky to photograph.
There are so many things to see and do in Ottawa, but they had already visited Ottawa many years earlier, and we had limited time. For the first day in the city, we went out to the RCMP Stables, home of the Musical Ride. The Ride is out on tour this time of year, but we had a tour of the museum and the stables. 
We had a very cute guide!
That is one immaculate tack room!
Horses are BIG, y'all!
These are the training horses.
We (or, rather, Emily) also managed to gain the interest of Creepy Guy.
Hey, Creepy Guy, keep looking.
I will render you impotent and blind with my laser eyes!

And stop playing with yourself. Yeesh!
He's just lucky I didn't notice him until I was looking at the pictures on my camera. 

Leaving Creepy Guy behind, we went to the Byward Market for lunch, then took a tour of the Rideau Canal by boat. Unfortunately, I once again forgot how to adjust the aperture on my camera, so most of the scenic pictures turned out like crap.

The next day we went to the Glengarry Highland Games, the reason for the timing of their visit. (We had attended the Longs Peak Scottish-Irish Highland Festival together in Estes Park, Colorado for several years, so this was continuing a tradition.) 

Fortunately, the day was cloudy and rainy, so there were no crowds. Unfortunately, the day was cloudy and rainy, so we didn't stay as long as we'd planned. But we did have time to:
Watch the highland dancers, in all their regalia.
The young lass on the left is practicing for her competition.
Watch beefy men throw heavy objects over high bars.
(We also watched beefy women throwing weights a long distance,
but they were less photogenic.)
Catch the tail end (pardon the pun) of the sheepdog demonstration.
Steve's grandfather used to breed champion sheepdogs, so they

hold a special place in our hearts.
I never tire of watching these very smart animals.
We ate Scotch pies and Beavertails (a Canadian treat), which were all very yummy and didn't stay in one piece long enough to be photographed. Then Steve went kilt-shopping. He's been talking about getting a kilt for years now and finally took the plunge.
Looks good on him, though I must say it's pretty
special with the Hawaiian shirt and baseball cap.
This tartan is the Black Stewart. Steve's family is
from the lowlands, so no tartan, but I am from the
Stewart lineage, so Steve chose one of the many Stewart tartans. 
Emily also chose a kilt, but in Dress Stewart.
Rather a different look on Emily than on Steve.
And then she saw a tam! 
Looks perfect with her newly black hair.
I think it was that evening that we finally had my famous Maple-Glazed Ribs!
Best served with stir-fried veggies and potato salad.
As a reward for those of you who have read this far, here is the recipe:
Maple-Glazed Spareribs
Boil/simmer for about an hour:
     3 pounds baby-back spareribs cut into sections of 3-4 ribs
Meanwhile, in saucepan, heat to boiling:
     ½ cup maple syrup (real maple syrup. "Pancake syrup" will not give the same taste.)
     ½ cup minced onion
     4 cloves garlic (or 4 teaspoons minced garlic)
Simmer on lower heat for seven minutes or until reduced by half.
Remove from heat. Stir in:
     1 cup ketchup
     1 Tablespoon chili powder
     2 Tablespoons soy sauce
     1 teaspoon ground allspice
Drain ribs. (For parties, I often stop at this point and refrigerate everything until we're ready to cook up and serve the ribs.)
Baste ribs with sauce. Grill 5-10 minutes, turning and brushing several times. Boil remaining sauce 1 minute before serving with the ribs.
Are you ready for a rest yet? I was, so the next day I stayed home while Steve took Joe and Mary to see the cat sanctuary on Parliament Hill, the Busker Festival (which we didn't even realize was happening), and to see the locks on the Rideau Canal.

Joe and Mary left at zero-dark-thirty this morning. I wish them a safe drive home; we miss them already.


  1. I think I was told that if you're a British subject (which we, citizens of the Commonwealth, all are), you have the "right" to wear Stewart tartans. Even if your family comes from countries far, far away from the UK.

  2. Well I'm gobsmacked. According to Wikipedia, you're right: any subject of Queen Elizabeth II can wear the Royal Stewart tartan.


What did you think? Any comments?

Related Posts

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...