With the arrival of Stella came the need to get over my aversion to patio dining. In the past, I’d much preferred an air-conditioned dining room, but it was no longer about me. I’d do anything for that little bat-eared and brindle bug; I’d even dine outside, apparently, vulnerable to various types of winged insects (they are unpredictable and freak me out a little). Thanks to Stella, I have a newfound appreciation for patios, even when she isn’t around.
Without Stella, I never would have come to love the oasis that is the patio of Guu Garden, and it never would have become one of my favourites. It’s on the top floor of a little plaza near the law courts downtown, and the breeze and sunlight it receives is just perfect. And when the sunlight dwindles down, the little lanterns are lit, casting a glow on the dark wood picnic-table-esque seating and the surrounding greenery – there’s something very calming about the simplicity of it all.
The other night, I met a friend from elementary school whom hadn’t seen in years, for dinner at Guu Garden. There were only two of us, but it felt like we were eating for 5. We had ebi mayo (battered shrimp with a spicy mayo dressing), tontoro (grilled pork cheeks with yuzu), salmon oshi-sushi (box sushi with cajun-spiced salmon), grilled kurobota pork sausages, as well as a selection of sashimi – BC spot prawns, salmon, hamachi, and tuna. We even had room for dessert: yuzu cheesecake for me, kabocha pudding for my friend.
I’m sad that we’ve started hanging out again just as I’m about to leave, but it’s good to know that when I’m back in town, I’ll have someone to call up who loves good conversation and a good izakaya just as much as I do. It’s a great feeling to rekindle a friendship, and over good food on your favourite patio, it’s even better.