Tag Archives: road trip

In trying to find the Tour de France festivities

There was SO much traffic on the way to Liège we decided to abort the mission and head off to a new direction away from the hubbub. I love it when we just say, “go left!” or “let’s try this way”. It always ends up with some type of reward: Be it a spectacular view, delicious food, strange encounters and always some pleasant surprises.

We drove around the hilly bits between Liège and Visé and made a few stops along the way. Visé was one of those nice surprises…very pretty town and it was all decked out in Tour de France trappings with a lot of people and cyclists spread throughout the streets. We even caught a glimpse of a TDF cycling team on the road as we were leaving. So, we did get a bit of the TDF spirit without actually getting to our original destination!

We grabbed some ice cream too and I was completely knocked over by the rush of memories I had after tasting my violette-flavoured ice cream [pictured below]. When I was quite young, the Calgary Stampede had a small section just for kids —with rides and games. After winning so many points from the games you could go into this big tent and spend your points. I bought a tiny bottle of purple perfume. I was so enchanted by the smell that I kept the perfume ~sparingly~ for many, many years so I could dab it on or pass the open bottle under my nose to take in the mysterious smells. I think I had the bottle until my 20s. I had taken it to perfume counters a few times to find out what it was, without ever getting any clues. Until I had this ice cream! The flavour tasted like the perfume smelled!! The olfactory senses sure are intense!!! Crazy. Needless to say, I tried to find some parfum or essential oils of violette online when we got home. I’m still searching. But if we had ended up going to Liège, I never would have discovered that elusive childhood memory (and smell!).

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Kangaroos and an unexpected redecoration at the diner

So, we did get to the mini kangaroos. It’s a private breeding farm though, so we couldn’t go in and pet them. Booooooo. But there’s a lot of fencing, so we could peek in any way. The farm also has Japanese Cranes, Ibises, Avocets, Wallabies Flamingos and other Cranes. The Japanese Cranes are threatened with extinction and the farm is apparently ideal for good breeding.

The meal was as mouth-watering as the first time we went there, but with a little twist… They renovated. When we were there before, when it was all Loosey-Goosey/country-kitchen-looking, I had expected to maybe get some watery soup and stale breadsticks, but the menu offered up a vegetarian dish of mushroom ravioli with truffle oil, arugula and parmesan…needless to say, I was stunned at how delicious it was. M’s satay was equally delicious he says. So, they changed all the Loosey Goosey decor, got rid of the dusty table props, they painted, stained and changed the lighting…making it look like the food they serve.

In the car, as we left, our favourite ‘local’ radio station was honouring MCA, so we Beastie Boys’d it on the way home.

Along the way I was reminded of this song that I remembered of a sock puppet getting down to electronica and we looked it up when we got home. It still makes me giggle.

SUCH an adventurous day, she said with unmistakable sarcasm. : )

Here’s the kangaroos/wallabies, birds and the restaurant of surprises.

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Unexpected yummy goodness + mini kangaroos (the two are not connected)

Today we are meant to go to see some mini-kangaroos and get some Unexpected Surprise Mushroom Ravioli. It’s rainy though, so not sure if we will go… I dubbed the pasta with that ridiculous name because it’s the BEST homemade ravioli I’ve ever had. And it lives in the most unexpected place, this little off-the-road, super tacky, stuck-in-the-80s, small town diner that we discovered a few months ago when we were off on one of our Let’s-Get-Lost-and-Explore road trips.

And yes, the kangaroos…they live a stone’s throw away from the diner. We had to drive by a couple of times to make sure that’s what I saw. If we go, I’ll take photos this time.


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