Sunday was a market day, and I managed to pick up some nice looking lettuces, and a beautiful heirloom tomato. I washed the lettuces this AM, in anticipation of a fresh, delicious dinner salad for the P-Man and I. After the market, we went home to warm up, and got ready to head down to Slainte by the Pier for brunch with friends. It was absolutely pouring rain, and when we arrived, our friends were sitting on the patio, under an awning, and a heat lamp, and someone else had joined them. The gentlemen was introduced, and we discovered that he shared an interest in cars with one of our friends. He had been walking by, and been invited to join our little group. Sunday's at Slainte are very special. Around 2 pm, musicians and singers start arriving. They get settled into a loose circle, set up their equipment, select a thirst quenching beverage, and entertain the patrons for the next couple of hours. The songs and the players are always changing, but the feeling is always the same. You just have to look around the room, to understand how important this music is to the people who come to hear it. People tap their toes, and sing along, and keep time by clapping or by using the tabletop as their drum! One of my friends was born and raised in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and I swear, she knew the words to half of the songs! We were a bit of a motley crew, but probably represented the diversity that Canada is famous for. At our table we had: A Ukrainian, a Scot/Irish, a South African, a Hungarian, and a Canadian, who was raised by a Scot and a Mexican/Brit! Our server was from New Zealand!
Community is hard to create. It just happens, in small places, at different times. As much as the food, and service was excellent, the experience is what I will remember most about that Sunday afternoon in the rain. A group of strangers brought together by music and a common,uncommon ancestry. Everyone was welcome, and from my view on the patio, everyone was enjoying themselves.
Restaurants come and go... Slainte has become part of White Rock's Community. If you don't believe me, I'm sure you can get a reservation for next Sunday's brunch... I'll be on a plane to Rome on Sunday...I wonder if I'll find a place to eat, that feels like home away from home?