Pink Pearl Resurrection

May 25, 2012

We just came back after dim sum with some friends at the newly re-opened Pink Pearl on Hastings.  What a pleasure to be back.  The place has been closed for about 2 years, since the fire, and they have rebuilt the interior almost exactly the way it was.  The floor is new, and their “special orders” serving table is gone, but everything else was so — familiar.  One of the servers we recognized, Sandy, ran up and hugged my wife.

There were still a few trolleys being pushed around, but the Pearl seems to have gone over almost completely to a list service, where you mark your selection on a menu form and hand it in.  I miss the trolley service, to be honest; it is the best way to discover new things that look good.  But the food was as good as ever I remember. Smaller portions, still, than Western Lake, but wonderfully tasty.

The problem now is that I have two favourite dim sum places that I have to choose from.  I guess we’ll keep going to both.

Head Buried in 1911

May 25, 2012

Seems so long since I wrote here!  I have my head buried in research for an article-length piece I am writing about the first building boom in Grandview between 1904 and 1915.

This week, especially, I am digging deep into the Canadian Census for 1911. There are all sorts of tools and indexes available for those searching for particular people in that census. But just try and pick out a range of people who live on the same street — the original design of the census seems deliberately skewed against such a search.  After looking through hundreds and hundreds of individual hand-written pages (see here for an example), I have found Commercial Drive residents scattered through 22 different pages in 3 separate “geographic” sub-divisions. And I am not sure I have found them all yet.

Slow and tedious work (and it gets in the way of normal stuff like eating and blogging), but the results can be so exciting!