Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Georgian Bay Kayak

As the capstone experience to my Ontario summer, I went kayaking with my Dad and Sally on Georgian Bay for a week.

It was gorgeous weather with sparkling, clear water and bright sunshine.

I love it up there and it was a wonderful opportunity to feel the expansive calm of the wilderness

We paddled, did yoga and ate really well

especially the morning on an island with wild blueberries, raspberries and blackberries

It's pretty wild up there. We saw very few people, and of course in the absence of people, there is the opportunity to see animals, like this cute bear

for more pictures you can look at this facebook album (you don't need to have facebook to see it!)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Ontario Summer

While it started out a little rough, and there were a few existential crises in the middle, in the end I would have to say my summer in Ontario went quite well.

I'm now at the Kripalu Yoga Center in Massachusetts, about which I will blog soon, but I wanted to share a few experiences from my summer first since I haven't written much yet.

One thing that called me home from Thailand was the bounty of an Ontario summer and I was not disappointed.

My Dad and Sally (stepmom) had a
garden plot at an organic farm just outside of town. I frequently went overboard on the harvesting (it's just so fun!) and ended up with trunkloads of veggies.

I also volunteered with an organization running a CSA with organic veggies grown in unused urban backyards and learned a lot from their awesome farmer, Scott. And of course, Guelph has a wonderful farmer's market that I enjoyed every Saturday.

I found food gardening to be fun and immediately rewarding (hehe) - as in, sit yourself down in the cherry tomato patch with your harvesting container: "one for me, one for you, one for me, one for me...."
but also rewarding in the more metaphorical sense of growing your own food and cooking with local, fresh, organic ingredients.

For anyone who has never harvested potatoes before, let me tell you: It's MAGIC.
You scrape some dirt away from the bottom of the plant and there are potatoes just lying there! It's like digging for treasure, but easier.

I had a lot of fun experimenting with cooking and preserving foods as well: pesto, sauerkraut, kimchee, soups, breads (when you leave the zucchinis on the vine too long, they get huge and you end up with a giant bin of them... and then what do you do but make zucchini, dark chocolate, cherry bread?)

and of course, there's nothing better than just plain fresh (I mean FRESH) veggies in a salad

Another highlight of my summer was Kayaking for a week on Georgian Bay. I'll post about that next time!