This afternoon, as today was a civic holiday in Canada, we experienced the annual London Ribfest 2014. On the face of it, it looked like a standard bank holiday festival in the UK…lots of stalls selling or promoting very random bits and pieces (including an astonishing range of very tasteful wolf and bear t-shirts and chain mail battle helmets) plus catering vans, live music and some fairground rides. However, it turns out that ‘Ribfest’ refers to the spare ribs (and huge quantities of other barbecued meat) on offer at the fair and that the purveyors of said meat are in competition with each other. They set up huge field kitchens in a row with their advertising boards above them and, as they sell their wares, they are judged under categories such as ‘best chicken’ and ‘people’s choice’. The winners in each category are then awarded a sizeable trophy and they add it to their collection. They display the trophies which they have previously won on the grass in front of their stall to attract customers as they travel from competition to competition across the USA and Canada.
Spare ribs must be very popular in Ontario as Ribfest was very well attended. As we walked around the park where the fair was held we saw all manner of strange sights…from a dog in a dress to a walking skittle and a giant chalk drawing of Anna. Carried away in the moment, I bought a cream soda in a ‘collectable mug’. The mug was appropriately tacky but drinking the bright pink cream soda from it was like trying to consume a bucket of cough mixture mixed with liquid candy floss. I apologised to a nearby tree as I watered its roots with most of the contents of the metal mug. I hope the tree survives.
In other news, today I found out that Canadian money is see-through and made of plastic.
I was also given a tour of the local area by one of our hosts to orientate me and saw black squirrels, a Dollorama (every item for 54p) and a Mr Lube.