The bank job

Image credi
Image credit

We still don’t get the banking system here (see Little Miss Nobody and Rain checks). Must be genetic because we are Swiss, or just because I am blonde.

Can anybody explain me how come I cannot perform a minor administrative change to our account because it is under the Man’s name (I am not even talking about taking a bunch of money out of it or closing the account), but I can cash a $ 2000 check (from Dwarf 2 daycare who decided to overcharge us last summer…he must really be high maintenance) without anyone paying attention to my ID, which I was told was not actually needed?

And yes, my name was misspelt on the check, too.

Living with bears (just needed a catchy title)

Dwarf 2, stroking my arm with a piece a candy (no, I don’t know why):

– It works better on you, daddy has more fur.

Well, it does not seem the Man really needs such a hairy coat right now: it’s close to 10°C in Toronto -in case you are wondering, I do not mind at all: it’s nice to be able to feel my nose and fingers when I go out.

And to be sure I still own all of them when walking back inside.


Image credit American Dad!
Image credit American Dad!




We are leaving Canada, the Dwarves are making sure we know they are upset and it’s not -25 C here in Toronto. Everything is well.

The Dwarves will obviously attend a new school, and thinking it would help we looked at their respective schedules.

It turns out they get to see a film on a regular basis.

Dwarf 2, a hardcore cartoon fan, was quite enthusiastic about this.

I explained it may not be a cartoon, but a regular film.

“Yes, mom, I get it. We will be watching adult movies.”

Yes, honey, and don’t forget to tell the nice child protection services lady about it.


Hospital touring

Last month I decided Dwarf 1 one should not be the only one experimenting Ontario Health Care System (see Pillow Fight).

So I decided to start with a nice cough, and after a couple of weeks to make things more interesting. As soon as I mentioned to the Man I had a high temperature (over 39°C) he immediately shipped me to the closest hospital in order to get an x-ray, although I kept telling him I would be perfectly fine very soon (this guy can be incredibly stubborn sometimes).

I was mentally ready to wait several hours in ER, but after ticking the boxes:

  • Have you been outside Canada in the past 21 days?
  • Do you have chest pain?Sick

I magically bypassed the whole line and was taken care of.

Turns out I was in Germany 2 weeks before (not very exotic), and the chest pain was due to my cough (but nobody asked for details, right?).

As expected by the Man (who learnt a couple of things in med school) I had a pneumonia, which in the last month prevented me from taking care of the kids, doing anything in the house, having any type of social life or a functioning brain (maybe the latest cannot be blamed on any illness).

Now the Man is a hero and I owe him a month of household chores.

Time to book this one-way ticket to South America.

Dress up day

My luggage and I are currently going through some personal issues and therefore decided to fly separately this morning.

Business travelers quickly learn a few lifesaving tricks. One of them is not to check in luggage. Ever.

However, if an exception has to be made for a good reason (a 2-week business touring of several markets implying some clean underwear along the way, an invite to Buckingham Palace requiring some fancy dresses or the need to repatriate a few tons of children’s books before moving back to Europe), they always make sure they have everything they need for the following 24 hours with them. Always.

Image credit

I was reminded of this basic rule this morning at the baggage center, when a gentleman understood with a look of horror on his face that he would have to go to his professional meetings in the clothes he was wearing.  

A Perfecto®motorcycle jacket and a heavy metal t-shirt.

A few (typical Canadian) sentences…

…we never thought we would utter.

  • I did not get the trash out, the bins were stuck in ice.
  • Mom, my eyes are cold.
  • The street car never showed up. I walked 3 miles in the blizzard.
  • The raccoons made so much noise last night I could not sleep.

Raccoon on wall

  • Don’t try poutine, it definitely does not taste good.
  • This weekend we are going to a nut-free, alcohol-free YMCA family camp.
  • Hide your beer can, we are in a park.
  • Honey, they are emptying the splash pad because the water needs to be changed, it has been 1.5h already.
  • It’s 36°C, so yes, I think we’ll find an ice cream truck.
  • Man, we ran SO fast after spotting these 2 bears!
  • Dwarf 1 kindergarten graduation ceremony is on Tuesday.
  • So your friend has a mom and a dad, 2 moms, or 2 dads?
  • It’s great to live here, eh?

Sandwich boards

Toronto definitely is a hipster city, and therefore cultivates the art of signage (see Bear with me, the coolest example I have seen so far). Funny to see how beer and patios seem to inspire everyone when winter lasts 8 months a year.

RhymesWho wants beerYou'd be home


                                             PizzaButter chicken

Sex, fashion and sarcasm

                                             BOBWonder woman

And a little bit of culture thanks to the ROM (OK, I admit it’s more a billboard than a sandwich board, but pretty cool, eh?)

ROM Pompei

Seems like social media have left some room for other communications channels. Let’s hope people don’t only look at their phones when walking.

PS For curious minds, other examples, and an interesting post on the Art of Signage can be found here.


Everyone and his dog

Here in Toronto people love dogs. Stores have dog-friendly signs, water bowls or even treats for man’s best friend.

Image credit
Image credit

Couple of times I overheard “Oh, she is sooooo cute!”, followed by a proud “Thank you”.

When I turned around, I could see a tiny mutt or a groomed, ridiculous poodle. I am still wondering if the owner, who seemed to think it was normal to get credit for the dog’s looks, had actually given birth to the living being.

OK, maybe in the poodle case a human being was responsible for the perm. And the pink bows.

Based on the number of dogs around, I have to admit the city is fairly clean and people probably do pick up after their pets.

I however get annoyed when an unleashed, calf-looking creature runs towards me or one of the Dwarves (“No, honey, it is NOT a pony, you can NOT ride on it!”) and its owner just says “Oh, don’t worry, Splurge is very friendly”.

Well, thanks for letting me know, because if Splurge had decided to get an extra snack it would be a bit(e) late.

And I can see he is friendly, because he shared all his mud and a few smelly hairs with me (as a reminder, The Man is an avid jogger and can fulfill these tasks as well, I really don’t need Splurge to step in).