Thursday, 7 November 2013

O true apothecaries, (let's hope) thy drugs are quick!

Curses! I hate being sick (as if anyone doesn't?).

However, when I moaned about my cold on Facebook yesterday evening, several kind apothecaries prescribed such excellent-sounding elixirs — everything from manuka honey "cold blaster" to old-fashioned hot whiskey — that I'm quite looking forward to testing their effect.

Now, normally when cold-plagued I'd be all whiny and pathetic and get Paul to go out in search of remedies. But he is at the college today, subbing for a colleague who's embarking on fatherhood (congratulations, Thor!). So Freddie and I bucked up and ventured out — slowly, and not very far.

First, though, an inventory of what we already had on hand ...

The Cold-FX, I should note, comes from an outrageously large quantity that I acquired at a silent auction to help send the street soccer team my cousin was coaching to the Homeless World Cup in Rio. So basically every time I have a cold, I feel like I'm doing a good deed. The unreadable eye-dropper bottle contains oil of oregano (blended with eye of newt, I'm sure). Nasty, nasty, evil-tasting ...

Anyway, first we went to this place. And yes, I know, I was only just complaining about Meinhardt last week. But it's close. And that's what mattered.

With a honey aisle this expansive, you'd think they would carry the manuka variety from New Zealand ... but, alas, I had to settle for some other exotic-sounding type (comb included!).

We found everything else we were looking for: lemons, echinacea tea, fresh ginger, chicken stock cubes.

I was briefly tempted by the Vegemite, which has only recently come back to Canada after some sort of Aussie sandwich spread embargo ... then I saw the price and decided to wait until we've sold our place. (Mr. Second Look is still interested, apparently, but still no offer on the table.)
Freddie and I meandered a bit before hitting our next destination.

The window display of this shop seems a bit fantastical ....
... until you turn the corner and look down at what your dog is sniffing:

Many of the apartment buildings in our neighbourhood have back lane garages like these ones. The ones in our building are allocated to specific suites. We don't have one — a minus for certain buyers, but we're hoping some car-share-using, transit-riding, bicycle-commuting, street-parking, pedestrian type(s) will come along and not mind!

I like the prescription symbol on the arch.

Yet another view of Douglas Lodge, which seems to have some kind of green roof

Nice tile work and brick! I'm going to miss these sorts of vintage features, which our current building has in spades. In architectural terms, we're moving from 1948 to 1975.
And here we are at one of Freddie's favourite stores (seriously — note the dog dish out front). Claude, the owner, has treats for everyone. When I told him I was looking for a small quantity of whiskey, for medicinal purposes, he smiled knowingly then got serious and asked me how much I like whiskey. I confessed that it's not my favourite (sorry, Susan, but thanks for the recipe!), at which point he disappeared into the back room and came back with two small bottles of rum. "Guaranteed to work," he said. "Compliments of the house." Then he gave Freddie a cookie and wished us good health.

Freddie looks a little tipsy here, but really he's just wondering when we're going to get to the good stuff in the box behind the counter.


Heading home, we spotted this mystery at 10th and Fir. Why would someone leave a baby seat here??

Always on the lookout for cheery colour on a grey day ... this woman's tights matched the berries perfectly, and her leather knapsack and boots were boss!
November rhododendrons!
Back home with our haul. Folk remedies worked miraculously on Freddie's recent affliction. What they do for me remains to be seen, but I've already brewed up my first mixture, and it is tasty and soothing.

Santé, Salud, Good health, everyone!


  1. Great post. I got the allusion at the beginning, and that made me feel smart for a couple of seconds.

    1. 'Long as you didn't think I was about to choke back a vial of poison!

  2. hope thy folk wisdoms work quickly.

    love your freddie, your blog and anthropologie!

    walk or a hot therapeutic drink sometime?

    andrea voslar

    ps beware the tylenol (have a horror story with that).

    1. Thanks so much, Andrea! Yes! Freddie and I would love to get together for a walk and/or hot drink. My email is — let's plan something. :)


What say you?