Sunday night @ Hemingway's, a rooftop pub in Yorkville.
Woke up late Sunday, which tends to happen when you don't hit the sack 'til early Sunday.
We were going to grab something to eat at the farmer's market at St. Lawrence Market, but it was closed. So once again we found ourselves brunching at the great Griddle of Gold.
I was in the mood to see a large body of water, so we decided to head down to Toronto's Harbourfront. We were about halfway there when Alex suddenly stopped dead in his tracks. If you remember, the last time we walked out of a Golden Griddle Alex claimed he felt a small heart attack. This time he was experiencing an attack in a different organ.
"Oh man," was all he said as he clutched his belly, but I knew exactly what he meant.
From that point on Alex walked with a powerful sense of urgency. Up ahead I saw a cluster of tall buildings, one of which was a hotel.
"I'm going for that Westin," he said.
Rain and Paul were walking behind us, so they didn't know what was going on. They didn't know why Alex was walking so fast with his buttcheeks clinched tightly together.
Alex sprinted across a busy boulevard, almost getting flattened, and dashed into the lobby of the Westin. About 10 minutes later he emerged with sweat beads on his forehead and uttered the quote of the day:
"It looked like I had a miscarriage."
After threatening to rain all weekend, it finally did, right when we were walking along the lake. I guess it was to be expected. After all, we were hanging with a guy named after precipitation. Seriously, it rained the last time I was with him in Tokyo. If it rains on our next trip, I'm going to offer our services to drought-stricken countries.
ME: Dude, you got some time next week? Sudan was wondering if we wanted to vacation there. Rooms and AK-47's are comped, along with free Continental breakfast.
RAIN: I'm not fucking doing Sudan again. Last time we were there one of the warlords try to abduct me and sell my ass in the black market to a man harem in Qatar.
ME: There comes a time, when we need a certain call. When the world must come together as ...
RAIN: Oh alright I'm going! You know I have no defense against that.
The one good thing about the downpour was that we spent the afternoon in our suite, brainstorming. And checking out photos of Livejournal girls we thought were hot. Kidding.
We had some substandard Asian food at this pretty place called Spring Roll. Then we strolled up the mighty Yonge to Yorkville. On the way there we ran into this elderly gentleman, whose sweater was either trying to say singing was a more effective aphrodisiac ... or that he was really good at giving men erections. Either way Paul seems to agree.
The previous night Paul had lamented the fact that we didn't take enough zany, utterly self-demeaning pictures. With the type of guys we had in our group, he'd expected an explosion of coke-fueled debauchery, borderline felonies, and farm animal orgies. So this Sunday night, he was going to do his best to compensate for the earlier, zany-free nights.
This was a weak effort on my part. I'm executing the standard man breast-groping pose, which has a low level of difficulty. Paul carried the team with his depiction of an old, gesticulating Yiddish woman.
This came out fairly decent. But only after my repeatedly instructing the girls on the left to kiss each other. Apparently I came across as quite pervish, but nevertheless they finally caved in, at which point Paul did this victory slide across their laps.
Rain had been feeling left out of all of this - if you've seen him in pictures, the guy is generally reserved and Zen-like with his expressions. But underneath that calm, cool exterior is, well, a digestive and circulatory system along with gender-appropriate genitals, lymph nodes, and a pair of black lungs that have rarely tasted oxygen.
So this photo's about as wacky as he'll get. That is until our next trip, when my Mexican pharmaceutical connections come through with my order of tasteless, easily dissolvable hallucinogens.
Anyway it was a great way to spend our last night in Canada, drinking beers under a now rain-free sky and conversing with an interesting, lively group of Torontonians. The only annoying part was they kept asking us if we went to the Taste of Danforth. Over and over again, like the past Thursday night when they wouldn't stop telling us it was unseasonably cold for August.
After Hemingway's, five of us went to this cool late-night joint where I had my very first bowl of vegetarian chili. We chatted some more until it was 3 AM. When we pulled out of the cab next to the hotel, we bumped into Rain, who was saying good-bye to the girl of intrigue for his trip. I'm sure you'll read about it in his journal some day. Or not.