I went to Northwestern Ontario for the holidays, to visit my mom and go dog sledding. Unfortunately, the weather was wrong and we couldn't take the dogs out, so I spent a lot of time reading Stieg Larsson and photographing snow.
Motel, xmas morning.
Perrier and pulla galore as the grocery stores were closed. Went to meet my mom at the hospital cafeteria for the employee's free xmas dinner. It was quite funny with everyone in their scrubs and caps, popping in to down turkey and coffee before getting back to work.
Sami style bonnets, made by an elderly Finn lady in the country and sold at Liisa Karkkainen's endlessly intriguing fish shop. Last visit, we left with whole smoked fish, curry piirakka, sauna soap, and a recycled Finn rag rug. It's one of those places. But back to the bonnets- I have a couple of these at home and was so happy to see one modelled over at Hel-Looks last week. Lapp hats are an untapped trend. Grace Coddington could do amazing things with them. I need to start a facebook appreciation group or something...
This is mojakka, a traditional Finnish-Canadian recipe and my favourite winter food. It looks like an ordinary stew, but a combination of turnip and allspice berries gives it a distinct flavour. Tastes divine when it's 40 below outside.
Drove down to Northern Minnesota around New Year's and caught an interview with the mesmerizing Patti Smith soon after clearing the border. American public radio is like that. Every time I cross into the US, there are a few kilometres of knob turning and crackling static, and then a voice makes itself heard and I end up learning about echidnas or Audrey Hepburn or some other unexpected topic. On this program, she discussed the filming of Dream of Life.
The ice was relatively solid at night...
...and broke into a million pieces by morning. I woke at 6 am to a terrific crashing outside my window- the sound of each wave coming in. It was very grey and cold. I half expected witches to come swooping down on cloud-pine branches.