Home Away From Home

When you’ve seen enough museums, castles, and churches. When your feet are killing you and you can’t access Google Maps because the battery on your phone has died. When the clouds open up and you left your umbrella in the hotel…

Tourist Overload.

The cure?

Something familiar. Some place that’s just like home.

Don’t think I don’t see the irony here.

We pack our bags and hit the road because we want to see new, different, other — and then all we want is the same old, same old.

Why?

Because being a stranger in a strange land is exhausting. Also interesting, exciting, and amazing, but it fries the brain.

For most North Americans, that little bit of home is a Starbucks or if we’re really desperate a McDonald’s. For Canadians though, nothing says home like Tim’s.

In Belfast, a block or two away from their incredibly beautiful city hall … could it be? Nah. No way, not here.

But, yes. There it was, as Canadian as the Maple Leaf — Tim Hortons in Northern Ireland.

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Did I go in?

Two words for you — French Vanilla 🙂

Aimer at Amazon

 

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11 thoughts on “Home Away From Home

  1. I’m not exactly in the same world. There’s no money for traveling except out of necessity. But since I was away this week, moving my daughter in at college, I can tell you that I get it. We did end up at Dunkin Donuts. And guess what they had… PUMPKIN!

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    1. LOL. Mickey D’s isn’t my favourite either.
      There are a few Tim Hortons in the States, mostly the N.Y. area near the border.
      Tim Horton played hockey for the Toronto Maple Leafs before he got into donuts 🙂

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  2. When I lived in Beijing, I used to joke that I would open a Tim Hortons right beside the Canadian Embassy. Glad to see that someone took the initiative in Northern Ireland.
    BTW – Did the coffee taste the same? Did they understand “double double”?

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      1. Right?!!! I think they are some of the friendliest people in the world. And here I’m going to talk WAYYYYY too much and share one of my favorite Irish stories with You. But when my son was 6 years old I took him on a 7 week backpacking trip around England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. He wanted to go see castles and that’s the place to see them! In his pack he carried toys. I hoisted the rest of our stuff. He was a wonderful traveler and we had a blast. I didn’t plan things as I like to travel via exploration. Here and there that caused snafus. One of those being that it took a VERY long time to get to Ireland when it was time to go there. He wanted to see Tipperary Town. I can’t remember why. But after a long train ride, a long ferry ride and another longer train ride….we were very tired and probably looked a fright. Back then (21 years ago) the station sat about a mile away from town with nothing in between. We were the only ones to get off. The station was a ghost town. Nothing, I mean nothing there. Bizarre. We walked outside and saw the town down the road and set out walking. When we got to town 3 Bed and Breakfast places were in view. We chose one because it looked pretty and in we went. The hall was empty. I said, “Hello?” and out ran a lovely, sweet man who was in his forties or fifties. “OH MY GOD!” he cried out as soon as he saw us….”Doris! Lay out the table!!!”.
        “Hello,” I repeated, “We were wondering if….”
        “SHHHHHHH!!!!!” he whispered loudly. “Not another word. Sit You down!!!”

        He helped us remove our backpacks and sat us at a table that was swiftly beginning to overflow with toast, cereal, sausage, juice, eggs……coffee…..tea….it was crazy! His wife and a small elderly lady running back and forth from the kitchen like dervishes! My son and I ate breakfast with them sweetly watching and offering more and more. When we were finished, he pulled a chair up beside me. With a huge smile, rubbing his hands together and leaning in toward me he said, “There now. That’s better! What can I do for You?”
        I told him we would like to please rent a room. He said, “Well now. Maybe You would, maybe You wouldn’t. Why not have a look around and if You see one that pleases You, it’s Yourn.”
        Needless to say, we stayed. For two weeks. By day two I was helping with the dishes. They were like family and so kind. They allowed me to pay for our room and all our meals but would not even discuss accepting payment for that first breakfast. We had so many wonderful adventures in Ireland and seriously, every which way we turned we were treated like that. Amazing.

        We kept touch for a while but I dropped the ball. I still regret that.

        Okay. Your turn to share an adventure if You’re in the mood! I love travel stories!!!

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      2. What an amazing story! I love it.
        I want to be able to travel like that one day…when I’m more courageous 🙂 We take cruises and tours which are great, but I think we miss a lot taking the chicken-shit travel path 🙂
        I remember a very nice server in a swanky hotel on O’Connell street many years ago now. My mother and I were treating ourselves to high tea and thought we were sharing one order only to get a bill that was double what we expected …and the currency exchange back then was something like 2.5 !!… This wonderful person took pity on our ignorance and only charged us for one serving of high tea. Pretty sure they wouldn’t do that for you here at the Royal York 🙂

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      3. Aw! I love that story. Sweetness!!! And You just gifted me my first belly laugh of the day….”chicken-shit travel path”! That’s brilliant and says it all! 🤣 What’s funny is that that’s the way I’ve always traveled, but as I get older think it may be nice to try a cruise or something like a tour…so many people I know do that and SOOO enjoy it! They make friends for life and come back with stories just as wonderful albeit of a different nature. May we get to travel and travel and travel! 🤗💖☀️🦋❤️😊! Bon Voyage and I hope You’re having a blast wherever You are and whatever You’re doing now!!! 🙂

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