Monday, July 31, 2006

Leek and Salmon pie

is the most excellent dinner I've just eaten at Fionn McCools Irish pub, corner of The Esplanade and Church Streets, Toronto.

Indeed, notwithstanding my passion for ribs US style, I reckon that, save for the fish and chips I had in Australia last year, this is the best meal I've had in the past four or so years. It was that good!

Of course, the fact that I was seated in just the right position to ogle the young (female) waiting staff as they bustled about might have contributed to the enjoyment; but no, I won't admit that! :-)

From all of the foregoing you'd be correct in inferring that we've reached Toronto. It's been an exhausting few days. I knew there was a reason why, when I'm on holiday, I prefer to go where fancy takes me at the time. This planning a holiday out to the minutest detail quite six months before starting isn't for me.

It doesn't help when Expedia tell us that our booking is made and paid for and when we turn up at the hotel fresh from the airport the hotel is both full and has no record of a reservation. The paid for part was certainly true; anyone will take your money willingly! So Sonya got on the phone (I use my accent as a convenient excuse to not have to deal with that stuff) and after some initial claims that the booking had been made Expedia eventually agreed to find us somewhere else in the Chicago area.

I reckon the call must have been routed to somewhere a *long* way from Chicago; they assured us the substitute hotel was close by. If you're sitting in a call centre in India I reckon Waukegan *is* close by but when you're driving it it's a powerful long drive! But let's be charitable; we made a turn South from O'Hare imagining that near Chicago meant thataway. Of course, half an hour later and a call to the hotel it turned out that we should have turned North, away from Chicago. An hour and a half later and we found the hotel; right out in the middle of woop woop.

Internet access? You're kidding of course. I reckon we found the only hotel chain in North America that charges twice what Motel 8 does yet doesn't have internet access. You understand that I'm talking the substitute hotel. Our original booking does have it; fat lot of good that did us.

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