A Pineapple Bun w/ Pork Chop + Cold Milk Tea combo was requested at the counter. Payment was made in the form of cash, as expected of east end GTA establishments. The frontmost section of the eatery had been allocated towards pickup orders, with baskets assigned for UberEats, SkipTheDishes, and several other meal service apps. To the north side was an indoor dining space, separated from the order counter with a sign indicating need for proof of vaccination. Although it is presumable that most residents have received both doses well over two weeks ago, a couple that entered shortly afterwards proved me wrong.
"We need your proof of vaccination." uttered a member of staff.
The woman cast a wary look at her partner before a hushed "Let's just get it to go." was overheard.
I had prepared a windbreaker for this journey, which was ultimately shed due to surging body temperature and lack of tree cover for half of the trail. We commenced from the Vista Trail Trailhead and arrived at the first lookout point (and only observation deck) within a matter of minutes. The two-level wooden deck enabled a partially obstructed view of Little Rouge Creek (not Rouge River). By no means was the scene extravagant, however one can anticipate a multi-faceted palette in a few weeks.
Truthfully, my first choice had resided with Cedar Trail. Signage for this route weren't spotted at the access point, but I later learned of a second parking lot at the Twyn Rivers Day Use Area.
"It's not! It's called getting fresh air and improving mobility." I retorted.
"But the air isn't fresh." she replied matter-of-factly. And frankly, she wasn't wrong. There was an undeniable mustiness that lingered about.
The reason behind the funk dawned upon me at the end of the hike: Just outside the park was a renewable energy plant that sourced animal waste and organics for power.
A downpour ensued, prompting mixed feelings for my earlier suggestion of ice cream. Some twenty minutes of contemplation later, respite was sought at an unassuming sweets shoppe by Hwy 7 and Ninth Line. "It's plain ice cream." I had been informed, but really, it emerged as quite the exceptional choice.
Tending to the priority at hand, I made a beeline for the back of the establishment; flavour picking could wait. The single stall bathroom bore diner-style decore with records on wall and pop art prints on the other. It was quite clean with the exception of pink hand soap calcification.
Neither of our scoops melted over the course of consumption. This could have been owed to A/C being on full blast though, for not only were the chairs cold, my lips were trembling too. The sole member of staff had been extremely amicable and accommodating of my indecisiveness, and even more considerate at my request for hot water. Beyond the cold plastic-coated metal chairs were two styles of light fixtures: incandescent bulbs in chandeliers and brighter (whiter) illumination within geometrics casings.