The annual Greek festival happened to fall on my birthday this year – and I was out of my favourite coffee-beans anyhow (always a low to mid-grade emergency, at least) – an expedition seemed properly indicated.

Sure enough, low as I tend to get on this day, seeing the Danforth blocked off and full of people eating, listening to music, dancing, shopping (all the stores – most still independent, had funky sale-tables set up) drinking, and did I mention eating?- really was a nice smile.

I got one of the best spanakopitas I’d had in a very long time – super fresh and melt in your mouth – none of this tough industrial phyllo dough here – this is Greeks cooking with pride – not only for other Greeks, but to showcase their favourites and their great skill (truly unparalleled contribution to Toronto restaurant culture) for everybody who showed up.

And everybody did show up – I love this about our street festivals. They aren’t insular and specialized, designed to appeal to the hosting community only – but rather invitations to all to participate, enjoy – and even to learn (and yes, learning and fatty foods definitely go together!)

So too, of course, do balloon animals. I was impressed with this fellow’s optimism – quite the ammo-belt he’s got there. Great cause though – had I not been moving fast (too much so, for the attendant wind-drag) I would have been tempted to bring one home for Catherine.

As it was, while I was charmed with many visual things – including this array – which really struck me as just about perfect, with no cropping or adjustment (always extra-satisfying, right?) I purchased and ate many fewer than I wish I had.

I tell you, when I got home and started looking at some of the menus in the backgrounds of my photographs, I was really kicking myself for getting so distracted by light.  Sure I was sensible enough to stock up on speclauus biscuits, along with my 20KG backpack-load of coffee (cookies being rare but much-enjoyed treat – coffee being metabolic essential).

But in a house like ours, with so many hungry bears with large sad eyes – how did I ever come home without a dozen honey-balls for three bucks?  A box of baklava at least!

When they say art demands sacrifices of us… ;o)

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