My special friend Karen invited me to accompany her to her office Christmas party last Friday the 11th. We were picked up in Kanata by a very cool limo bus, a half sized bus lined with super comfy leather couches and shelving with cup holders and pretty lights ... a real treat. Cozy when all six of us were in it.
We picked up Kriss and Rick down town in the Glebe area, the driver having wicked trouble getting the bus turned around and backing into their neighborhood ... meanwhile, we saw a man run by in a flash, and it turned out to be Rick, coming back from a successful meeting with a client. So the celebration was taken to another level :-)
Off we went then to Barrhaven to fetch Aisling and Sean, shockingly about a half mile from my house. Small, small world. We chatted along the way and the conversation turned to photography, a passion shared by Kriss and me ... Karen cleverly steered us there to make me feel comfortable. In fact, Rick and I are in similar businesses and we enjoyed a chat as well. I must say that everyone was very kind to make me feel so at home in the group. What a nice group and what a fun time.
After we got Aisling and Sean, it was off to Manotick ... a small town a few miles south of Barrhaven down highway 13. The party was held at the Main Street Cellar, a terrific restaurant in an older house that has been beautifully renovated with huge stuffed leather chairs (very soft and very comfortable) and artwork from a local artist. A very nice atmosphere.
Kim, one of the partners in the restaurant, was at one point the boss of the local branch of the company, so everyone knew each other and it was a really nice time. The ladies sat on one side of the table and we gentlemen on the other. There were several cameras at the table, blasting away at various times. I managed to capture the ladies at one point, while they were posing for Sean I believe. Then they turned and posed for me ...
Left to right. that's Karen, Aisling and Kriss. Aren't they pretty? Who doesn't love this time of year ....
Kim seemed to be always cracking another bottle of wine.
I had some on the way (in the bus) but otherwise did not partake of the wine. I like my rum and coke and loved how they made them there. Simply delicious. Kriss popped off some shots with her Nikon bridge camera, a big and powerful camera from a few years back. I've seen an image from it and the camera is excellent. The flash is very powerful and the image quality very clean.
We briefly got into a dual ...
I got a shot of the four of Kriss and Rick with Aisling and Sean in animated discussion. The image is processed in black and white because the flash made a hash of it. This was the best I could arrange from some pretty bad raw material.
Later on, after the spectacular prime rib had been consumed, the ladies were enticed to pose for the cameras.
And then they got Kim into the image ... I am so sorry that my brain checked out and I allowed the frame to drift left a bit. I hope Aisling won't hate me for that ... it's a great picture, with fantastic smiles all around.
We sat for a while after dinner, and a couple of local people visited us from the bar. We had a fun conversation with a judge and a local business owner ... I really enjoyed that time. During that conversation, I was served one of the greatest desserts I have ever had ... an apple tart with a thick chocolate (almost fudge) base. Amazing ...
And then it was time to pile into the bus and make the trip back.
When we arrived at Aisling and Sean's house, we all piled in to see their new renovations ... which included amazing hardwood floors ... gorgeous. Exactly what I envision for my house one day. They have a fairly big Husky, who is so cute. My face was thoroughly cleaned by the time we left ... this is the breed that Jonathan wants ... and I must say that any dog that nice would be a treat to have around.
I enjoyed a Cubam run (mmmmmm) there and have a pretty decent buzz running by now. As we left again for the next drop off (Karen and me), I had to snap an image of their lovely snow man ... very Christmasy ...
A fun night for all and do go and visit the Main Street Cellar in Manotick ... you will not be disappointed.