The DapperDame Hosts

As I have mentioned previously, I’m a member of the couchsurfing site.  You welcome strangers into your home and let them sleep on your couch.  This weekend a Taiwanese gal living in Calgary came to Edmonton for the first time and we went exploring.

First stop:  Whyte Ave to check out the young and funky part of the city.  Actually, first stop was supposed to be the Strathcona Farmer’s Market which was quietly closed today.  I don’t have anything wrong with ya’ll taking a holiday but there were plenty of surprised people outside the market so it wasn’t that well publicized.  We rallied and did some exploring in the cute shops.  Since TaiChar (not her real name) had never tried Cajun food we grabbed the last two seats at the bar and settled down for a hearty meal of po’boys and sweet-tater fries at Da-De-Os.  One of the regular servers was waiting on us; the laid back, rock type guy who opens his mouth and this intense bass comes out.  TaiChar tried the shrimp and I had the blackened tuna steak on a po’boy and I never looked back.

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A little history with the menu

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You must try the jalapeno pepper jelly

Yes, the fries are breaded and you know you want them

Yes, the fries are breaded and you know you want them

Did I mention it was a lovely 50s diner?

Did I mention it was a lovely 50s diner?

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The Alberta Legislature grounds turns in to wonderfully gawdy Christmas display with every colour of lights.  It is a truly magical place – the cold air, twinkly lights, carols playing over the loudspeaker.  I love that crooked Tim-Burtonesque Christmas tree.

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And TaiChar gets extra points for actually taking me up on the offer to go climbing.  She had never tried it before and was a trooper.  She even took a few photos and, against my better judgment, I will share some of them with you.  We primarily bouldered (climbing low, without a rope).

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The I-hope-no-one-walks-out-that-door-into-my-crotch move

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The cave

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Lastly, I take everyone I ever meet to eat at The Duchess.  My very favourite cafe/place in Edmonton where one can sip on some latte art while eating tiny, perfect macarons in flavours such as gingerbread and eggnog.  The Duchess even supplied me with a mini-revelation today:  I might *like* fancy mustard.  GASP.  This is a major deal for me.  None of that nasty yellow junk but the fancy kind might have opened a whole new world to me.  Thank you, croque monsieur.

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Those macarons I was telling you about

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You don’t choose a dessert, it chooses you. If they had a dessert sorting-hat I would be in the macarons house.

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I call it: Croque Monsieur and a hipster.

The cafe owner took 300 hours of his own time to build this entirely edible 1:100 scale model of Chartres Cathedral from gingerbread.  Remarkable.

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My blogging fingers have been rejuvenated by an infusion of technology including iPhoto and my new Nikon V1.

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