What feels like a lifetime ago I was a cook. And one of the greatest people I worked with at Yaletown was Mike. Always positive and good for a laugh, we always seemed to connect well. Our paths crossed a few times after that- later we worked at Dix and after I finally got it together to get out of the restaurant industry (don't get me started)- we both worked for the same company- Pane e Formaggio- he in Point Grey and I in Whistler. One more time when I lived back in Vancouver after Tokyo I worked for him on 10th for a short while.
As things go, you fall out of touch- but we finally managed to reconnect and we met up at the shop after I we finished at the Aquarium. He really loved Ken and Mona.
Ken started to get fussy so Ritsy took him for a little walk around while I caught up with him, and later Alberto my financial advisor (and former co-worker at the now departed Fiasco).
Finally it was time to say goodbye sadly, but we all had a great time, and got to take this great picture together.
And ended with some serious discussion. Looking forward to seeing Mikey again, next time we come out.
Benita had actually suggested going to the Vancouver Aquarium together, but I was thinking that they were too busy- so saw it as a great chance to catch my family one more time before heading home. Here mom is feeding the sharks.
Mona was nice and comfortable in the stroller that we had borrowed.
At this time we were starting to realize that Ken feels uneasy in dark lit spaces. While he didn't say it at that time- he started to act up again. Mom tried to cheer him up.
Ahhhh pretty butterfly.
Mona was having a great time.
Aunt Tracey also did a great job of sitting down and trying to cheer him up too. He was a bit better when we got outside and had lunch. It was time, though, to rush to our next destination...
Lots of catching up on this trip, as you can imagine. This time we met up with Carrie and Rose for some breakfast at a cafe I remembered in the area. I think they send their profits to building a school in Cambodia or something like that. It was a good feed to boot. Rose was shy at first.
But once Ken had out some trains and shared one (to his 5) she warmed up.
and was flashing her charming little smile.
Afterwards we hit the library which had an excellent huge kids section. Mona was digging into Snuggle Puppy it looks like.
Ken was practicing his picture pose for GQ.
We had a really great time catching up with Carrie and Rose, and now that they are plus one I am really looking forward to the next catch up!
Steve's Mom was in town while we were- and she just so happens to be the lady who married Ritsy and I so she was pretty interested to see how we were doing and the fruits of our (or Ritsy's more accurately)labours. Keiko was chilling with her as well when we made it out.
They had chalk for drawing on the cement with.
Ken like Keiko from their first meeting and this may be why- she knew the way to his heart.
The ladies bonded.
Ken tried to camoflauge himself next to the car...
We hit the Red Robin out near my mom's apartment for a good old fashioned family birthday dinner. I know the 2 ladies are strapped for cash lately, so it was nice that they sprung for dinner and bought presents for Ken and Mona. Above is Tracey and her great boy, Mac.
The boys both love Thomas and vehicles so could hit it off. This was the first time we could see the depth of Ken's English skills. He was chatting as though he lived in Canada all his life.
The family mobilizes.
Down to business at the dinner table.
Mona enjoyed her new toy which was quite fun until I got it wet one day and the sounds came up eerie and distorted.
Mona got her hands on brother's hat.
No, Canada baba is not the reason she was crying, but it's the only picture I have of the 2 together...
I was happy to hear the news that my old pal Alex was due to have a child last year and we managed to make it out to his place for a visit and some catching up on my birthday in the morning. Isabella was quite lovely, though I could see some resemblance to her dad.
Mona did not feel threatened by the competition for attention posed by another baby being there.
Al and Ken got along splendidly. Thought Ken's interest in flatulence humour increased a lot after the trip.. could be Al's influence.
Comedic photo ops presented themselves.
This is our 'in touch with our feminine side' one.
The ladies went for a more serious picture, though it was tough to get everyone's faces into the shot.
Scott was nice enough to throw a bit of a party for my birthday. It was also dubbed a summer party, hence a few people I don't know were present. Can you spot the piece of my head in the picture above? How about Ritsy eating corn and talking to Keiko.
Steve made a move to steal Mona- I had my eyes on him though.
A blast from the Whistler days past- Johnny B and Dave McGhee. Great to see the 2 of them.
Benita and her brother Carl with his little cutey. (notice me wowing Colin with my storytelling skills)
Somehow we managed to run out of alcohol, so we had to pool some money and buy more.
Colin was stunned (this was the first chance to meet his beau Susan- standing behind him)
Hey Keiko! They are saying.
The party deteriorated into battles in the pool. Apparently Ken was having a tough time sleeping and came out of his room to tell everyone to quiet down. Funny guy.
Everyone was tired and a good time was had by all!