Canadian Food Expo

I was strolling down Chapala Street in Santa Barbara. An event was being set up for the weekend and my curiosity led me to take a peek at what it was all about. A banner hung highly and declared, "CANADIAN FOOD EXPO." There were many banners and they swayed back and forth in the breeze as if they were masts guiding the concrete convention center through the annals of Canadian cuisine.

Somehow, I swindled my way in past the security guards - they were busy setting up and snoozing on the plastic chairs. As I entered, vast vaulted ceilings adorned with the glows of sleek fluorescent tubes loomed over the airy convention hall. The fluorescent tubes had been sent down from God's minions to cover the event in a white glow so the attendees could view their hot dogs and foie gras in a perfect heavenly light.

People of all ages were setting up booths, preparing food, and stocking their merchandise. I was in awe because there was so much food and too little time. I began to walk around, receiving jovial grins from the many Canadian vendors. I could not tell if the exposition had officially begun because many of the vendors were already offering me samples of wild breads, stinky cheese - which I declined - designer pastries, and even expensive wines. I looked around and saw a woman wearing a knitted beanie placing hot dogs in a microwave. With this I was not impressed and found it to be an anomaly among all of these fabulous gourmet booths. However, my concerns passed away as I came across the bakers' booths - pastries, freshly baked baguettes, hand-iced cakes doing pirouettes in glass cases. I was so hungry. I did not know what to do.

I was blatantly staring and drooling at these beautifully decorated cakes. I immediately offered to work for one of the bakers; I said I could tend to his booth and customers for little compensation. Wink wink, nudge, nudge. I whored myself for fresh bread and cream puffs. The baker was a stolid guy and did not seem to care either way, so in I was. After an hour or so of the baking job, the baker told me to scram after giving me a basket of goodies leftover from the last expo. I decided to rummage around for more samples.

As I turned right, I came across shelves one would see in a regular market. These shelves were different though because they were stocked with gourmet sodas and teas bottled in the fanciest, most artsy containers I have ever seen used for beverages. Pomegranate juice, apple fizz, Coca Cola mixed with Pepsi in a strangely morphed cobalt glass bottle, kumquat juice, orange soda with pulp, celery juice in wooden canteens. There were so many bizarre concoctions, I became overwhelmed and decided that I had to leave or else I may immediately move to Canada to start a new life dictated by food and beverage.

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