A Harvest on the Last Day of Summer

 

Take Back September-Day 22

The heat hanging over Oshawa still hasn’t let up.

So, I’m writing this, once again, from my desk with a pair of fans blowing. I’ve got a fuzzy feeling in my brain from the last beer I drank and I’m thinking about finally getting myself out of this collared shirt I’ve been wearing all day.

Before that though, let’s get writing.

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I want to talk about two things today.

The first, my assignment at the Harvest Dinner, the second, my weekend in Algonquin Park.

Let’s start with the Harvest Dinner.

It’s an absolutely amazing event, one that I’ve heard about for the last couple years, but haven’t been able to attend. Well, this year I got the invite and I was super excited.

It’s hosted by Durham College at their Centre for Food in Whitby. The dinner involves a five course meal, prepared by the students with all the ingredients grown right there on the campus. The Centre for Food is huge on the field to fork initiative and nearly everything on my plate tonight came from the fields directly behind us.

Oh yeah, there’s about 150 people who attend this thing and they set up this super long table right in the middle of the garden and serve the food family style.

So, I was sitting with a group of strangers at the start, but by the end of it, there was the pair of lifestyle bloggers beside me, Mandy and Francesa, there was the real-estate agent from Ajax, Riyad, and then there was a guy down the table who’d flown one million miles with Air Canada.

Needless to say, it was a fantastic meal with a lot of great conversation.

There was salad with roasted pear, there was cedar-planked Ontario whitefish, there was King Cole duck breast, grilled lamb and finally braised beef short rib.

By the end of it, I felt like I needed to be rolled out of there with a wheelbarrow.

However, I sat up straight, sipped my beer and listened to the band on the stage pluck away to some Blue Rodeo as the sun went down behind the cornfields behind us.

I was incredibly grateful to be invited to such an event, and I plan on writing a column about the night and the amazing things the Centre for Food does in Durham for the upcoming edition of The Express, so I’ll save some of my words for those pages.

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Now, let’s chat about Algonquin.

I’ve finally gotten back into a daily posting routine these past couple days and now, unfortunately, I’ll be stepping away for a couple days.

It’s not for lack of wanting to post, but I simply won’t have the capacity. It may surpise you to learn that there isn’t wifi in the middle of Algonquin Park.

So, I plan to enjoy the weekend with M and my friends and probably write a little bit of longhand before coming back on Monday and filling you all in on the undoubtedly great weekend that it’s going to be.

M and I will be leaving tomorrow after work to drive to the park, so the countdown is on

Oh, and yes, there are only eight more days until we leave for JAMAICA.

Exciting times my friends, exciting times.

Thanks for reading, as always.

J.J.W.

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