Monday, November 06, 2006

Why Being Multicultural Rules

Okay, before you read about my awesome Sunday, go read a little something by the most intelligent and entertaining man in Canadian journalism. When you get back, this post will still be here. I promise.

My dad was born in Colombia, and his dad was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland. My mom's mom was born in Cairns, Australia, so I've got four entire continents in my DNA. I like being a mutt, even if I am a boringly white mutt.

Yesterday, I decided that my father's commemorative birthday dinner simply had to happen, even if I had to go alone. My sister, my brother, their spouses and my mother were all going out for dinner in Ottawa at the same time, and the timing just seemed right. So, I made some last minute phone calls to some of my more impulsive friends, printed out some driving directions to a sketchy neighborhood in North Philly, and eventually found myself at Tierra Colombiana with six good friends. The food was absolutely perfect; I even liked the chicharron this time! And my bandeja tipica was enough food to fill me to bursting and bring home enough leftovers for Jeremy to eat twice. Happy, happy times.

And, in case that wasn't enough fun for one day, my new friend Dan, who spent a semester in London living in the exact same building that I spent a semester living in, reminded me that yesterday was the Fifth of November. So, while I was gorging myself on steak and eggs and rice and beans and avocado and sweet plantain, Dan was busily constructing an effigy of Guy Fawkes out of the most flammable components he could muster. (Sadly, we were not able to acquire fireworks, since there are no American fireworks holidays in the near future, and the local shops don't seem to think it's worth stocking fireworks in November for the few freakish ex-pats and wannabes who want to blow things up in honor of a dead guy who wanted to blow things up.)

I got lost three times on the way to Dan's house, but in my defense, Dan's driveway is about as hidden as a driveway can possibly be. In fact, if you look up "hidden driveway" in a dictionary, there actually is a picture of Dan's driveway there, except that you can't see it, because it's that hidden. So the bonfire had burned down a fair bit by the time we got there, but Dan kindly waited for us before throwing Guy on the fire. It was beautiful and fun and cozy to huddle around a fire in November, roasting marshmallows over a burning traitor, and discussing theology and relationships and living in London. I think the only thing I love more than honoring strange traditions is finding people who are willing to share them with you, even on a moment's notice, when the rest of the world might think you're crazy. Oh well, maybe I am. But I have fun.


twilighttreader said...

Why am I not even remotely surprised that, out of all the people I know, it's Dan F who's building and burning Guy Fawke's effigies?

Concerned In Canada said...

I'm quite surprised you would find a 2 bit comedian like Rick Mercer amusing. Just to inform your American readers, Rick Mercer works for a Canadian government funded TV Network CBC, and tries to be the Canadian version of Jon Stewart. His politics can be described as equivalent to that of your typical San Francisco Democrat. He loves to take part in Canada's favorite activity which is to make fun of Americans every opportunity he gets. Most talented Canadian Artists or Performers move to the U.S.A. to make their living. The ones who are not as talented stay in Canada and make their living of Canadian Tax Payers by getting government grants to produce TV shows, CDs, Movies that very few people care to watch, listen etc.... Rick Mercer is one of those moderate amusing entertainers who disguises himself as a news commentator.

susie1998 said...

You know what I love about your blog? Most days, it's like taking a short walk through history.
Sounds like you had a lot of fun :)

trichenosis jim (dan f.) said...

that was an awesome bonfire! not as official as some of the others i've seen but very very flamable.

and thank you by the way for giving the name of that columbian restaurant. bc it sounds really good.

Kelsey Catherine said...

Amen to the Rick comments.
While I find him to be somewhat amusing, he isn't amusing enough for me to be paying for his escapades with my tax dollars.