I wish I could say that I've been taking my down time seriously, but honestly, I barely have anything to show for the last two weeks. My mending pile hasn't budged, my crochet hasn't made it past the fourth row and my 2011 numbers remain uncrunched. In my defence, I did take four days to go to Ottawa, and I count that as an accomplishment, as we drove there during the first real snow storm this area has seen all winter. Drivers were cautious, the roads weren't properly plowed, and there was an accident every 10 kilometres it seemed. By the time we reached Kingston, a usual 3-hour drive, we had been driving for 7 hours! It was getting dark at that point and we were exhausted and frustrated, so we decided to drop anchor for the night and make the best of a messy situation.
That night we had an amazing dinner at Olivea, window-shopped along Princess St. and then stopped off at The Toucan for a night cap. On our walk home, suckers for old architecture, we found ourselves whispering and tip-toeing up to read plaques on private homes.
The next morning we woke up to complimentary breakfast in bed (!) and sunny skies. There wasn't much happening in town and were dissappointed that the Penitentiary Museum was closed, but we received a warm welcome at the Kingston Brewing Co. (Ontario's oldest brew pub and Canada's oldest wine-producing pub). The beer was tasty, the conversation was friendly and the decor was entertaining.
We also went on another self-guided architectural walking tour to find McIntosh Castle (of course) and some other stunning pieces of heritage. 134 Earl. St. was built in 1866 and was once inhabited by Sir John A. MacDonald. Can you even imagine living in these places? I bet they have tea time.... and ghosts.
When we hit the road again we were well-rested, the roads before us were clear and the snow-covered scenery was a tourist attraction in its own right. Our detour in Kingston was probably the best decision we could've made and just goes to show you there's something to the saying "it's the journey, not the destination."