August, 2020

We were less active in August than July, partly because of work, and partly because of a gratuitous time spent on the Xenoblade Chronicles epilogue (a game that slightly overstayed its welcome).

We returned to Unionville for early in the month for some more sight-seeing. If you ignore the face masks, everything almost feels normal now. The shops are busy the the restaurants are packed with spaced-out patrons. The town is as photogenic as ever, and I’m happy that the local businesses have caught a break.

At the end of the month we attended a wedding. I don’t envy the bride and groom who have had to deal with multiple delays and extra layers of complexity in the planning and the attendance of the event. The entire event was outdoors in a backyard, and everyone was spaced out as much as possible. Even the food was served as take-out containers to accommodate those who might not be comfortable with eating at a gathering. All in all, the event was a success, and the happy couple have truly been baptized by fire.

I had a pretty good time at the wedding (two words: open bar). I was happy for the opportunity of having someone else take some photos of the wife and I together. Attending the wedding was a risk I deemed acceptable, though truth be told, I wasn’t really thinking too much of it. Other family members and co-workers did cross my mind, but in thinking about this weeks later, I think I was just sick of thinking about the small hypothetical risk. I guess this is how covid fatigue sets in, and this will be a challenge in the months ahead as school re-open and the weather gets colder.

Later on during the month, we ate Zen Sanuki Udon, a semi-upscale udon restaurant. We had the dinner sets there, which were beautifully presented and reminded us a little of the ryokan meals in Japan. Compared to ramen, udon soups are lighter in flavour and the dish relies much more heavily on the quality of the noodles.

I am happy to report that the noodles are springy and the kakuni braised pork topping is tender yet surprisingly not excessively fatty. The sashimi, tempura, unagi, and even the udon chips served as a complimentary drink snack were all delightful, I look forward to returning, though I probably wouldn’t go for a full dinner set — it’s a debilitating amount of food.

We also stopped by Cafe Landwer for some shakshuka brunch. As an Israeli chain, there’s a bit of Mediterranean goodness to be found in virtually all of their offerings. I wasn’t a huge fan of the shakshuka, but the Nutella latte I had was wonderful, so I wouldn’t mind returning to try the other items on the menu.

Much time was spent this month on a series of product photo shots for a local window fashion company. Not exactly the most exciting subjects, but there’s more to these than meets the eye: all of these shots were shot against a piece of glass that is backlit with a softbox. This is meant to bring out the mesh sections of these fabrics, as well as to demonstrate the translucency of the material. Credit goes to Miette-chan for the idea.

I don’t work with the customer directly, but the feedback I got from the intermediary designer has been all positive thus far. I also did some accessory photos using the typical figure photography light setup, and this has turned into a lucrative side-hustle.

So that’s August in the books. As I look ahead to September, the much-dreaded return to school looms on the horizon. It’s an absolute dumpster fire of anxiety for everyone involved, and though I don’t have a direct stake in it, I am concerned about the impact on covid spread and the ramification of that on the slow return to normal that we’ve been enjoying that far. However, I trust that the governments of various levels in Canada are acting in good faith in striking a balance between safety and the economy. If things go astray, I hope the society as a whole will come together to correct the course.

…Let’s see how well those comments age in a week, shall we?

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