Lunch with my Daughter at The Coup was both reminiscent of our recent cross Canada trip and a sandwich opening experience.

The service was very efficient.  Too well-organized for a busy Calgary 17th Ave restaurant.   Sited almost immediately on arrival by server #1, with server #2 delivering the menus promptly.

Very attentive!

My Daughter and I ate (kind of), the food was delicious, and I would highly recommend The Coup regardless of your food preferences. It is Vegetarian/Vegan, so if that really bothers you tell them to put a lot of cheese on your order and get over it.

Food & Service & Price are all reasonable! 

If you have OCD or are cheap continue reading, otherwise stop here.

1 PM.

I can’t remember what I ordered, something like Treehouse Sandwich or Pine tree something???  The sandwich was never destined for immediate consumption as the awesome cauliflower and bean soup/chili or whatever it’s called, was both delicious and filling.  Leaving the sandwich to take home is my usual motive/move at restaurants, but it never fails to confuse.

Normally there is one server, but two of them seemed to come by every few minutes to check and see if I had eaten my sandwich yet.  If I looked like a big tipper I would understand that completely, I don’t.  I am kind of homeless, but not in appearance.  Maybe they could sense that I normally eat salad from Safeway (the store not the dumpster) and it would be good if I ate my sandwich while it was hot.

If I was by myself wearing my North Face hoodie or my MEC convertible pants it would make perfect sense.   But, I was in my Dad Wal-Mart clothes, the same ones I have worn for the past 7 years.  I could have dressed up, but then my daughter would either not recognize me, or realize that once again, I’ve spent any chance of her ever getting an inheritance. 

I assume they figured she was my daughter not “niece”, but maybe they thought I was a creep and were trying to eavesdrop serendipitously before reporting me to the police.  I’m sure that’s happened before, some of the Vegan restaurants we visited in Canada were often in “sketchy” neighbourhoods.

Odd, I thought, my mother stopped checking on my meal progress about 40 years ago, but to be fair I have a general look of incompetence.  I DO know how to eat, all too well, which is why I was saving that delicious looking sandwich for later.  

Normally I wouldn’t mind the extra attention, especially if I was eating alone like normal, but on this day, I was happy to just sit and enjoy a meal with my Daughter without the TSA interrogation.

However, since neither of us are big talkers to begin with the constant check ins on my sandwich progress gave us something to sarcastically discuss, and now for me to write about obsessively.  Thank you #1 for telling us the story of a father smashing his kids head into the lights above the tables, I may use that in a different review that needs some spice, but all of this review is 100% true. 

I wish I could end the review here, but, OCD remember.  

When it came time to turn the table for fresh customer's server #2 arrived with a final puzzled look on her face (also just like my mother) like I had unilaterally determined the sandwich was crap without even tasting it or explaining why I’ve been staring at it for the last ½ hour.  I’m sure she thought: ”The soup went down like a hungry homeless person so what’s up with the sandwich?”

I stopped messing with #2 and confessed I had no intention of eating it from the beginning.   That seemed to give her a renewed mission and promptly grabbed the plate.  Upon #2’s return the sandwich was presented in a large box so it could remain open faced like served.  A kind thing to do, but to be fair, I was planning on just squishing it into my backpack to eat later after pushing through the masses of people at the Lilac Festival who all are just shuffling down the street shoulder to shoulder like zombies—pick it up people!  

Back to the sandwich.  I’m not done with it just yet, I didn’t want to tarnish the artistic zeal of the chef, but now at 1:30 PM instead of a smushed sandwich in a backpack I have a nice open-faced sandwich in a box still needing transportation back to my hotel.  I didn’t request or think of a plastic bag until we had left the restaurant, mostly because of the shell shock while in BC and their “do you want a bag?” question which always comes across like “Really?  You want a bag?  You are going to destroy our environment dude!” 

Not a big deal, but Calgary has it’s share of homeless people and being homeless myself I like to contribute when able.  After spending $50 on lunch I was unable to help the homeless person asking for change blocks from the restaurant (right beside MEC).  Never underestimate the quick thinking of the homeless though, when he saw that nice “food to go” box he had the nerve to say: “or food” as we walked by.  

My sandwich?  No way!.  Not just because it cost me 20 bucks and was still perfectly preserved, but now I feel like I HAVE to get this sandwich back to the hotel and I still have a trip on the C-Train and anything can happen there (especially downtown), plus it’s hot today and Lilac Festival so the odds are not looking good.  I only have a bowl of soup in my stomach, so sorry bud, next time when it’s a Jugo Juice wrap it’s all yours.  Not this delicate open-faced sandwich from The Coup.

If you are still reading clearly you too like perfect sandwiches so I’ll finish this up so you can go make one. 

My apologies to both server # 1 and #2 for leaving a pathetic 15%.  I was confused when there was only a 20% option and “other” option on the debit machine.  Being OCD I knew it was easier to pick the 20% rather than start the battle through menus to enter 15%.  However, after all the table visits we received it felt like a challenge to me, or maybe you wanted 10% each? Understandable, you deserved 15% each considering the attention you gave us. 

When I’m rich I’ll come back and tip better, which I know doesn’t help my friendly sandwich watchers #1 and #2 today but… Karma.

It’s now 4:26PM and I still haven’t eaten the sandwich, still looks pretty good though. 

Maybe the more you pay for a sandwich the longer it lasts?

I just realized I’ve taken 10 pictures of this freaking sandwich yet not one of my daughter today, although she’s much more memorable than a sandwich.

5:50 PM 

½ the sandwich is gone and it was DELICIOUS.  

6:15 PM

Done.  

I know it sounds like I’ve been harping on the cost, I’m not, I’ll gladly spend $20 there again especially when it grants me time and a new story with my Daughter.  

Even though she didn’t offer to pay.

Cheapskate.

 

-30-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Econolodge Banff Trail Calgary -- May 2017

 

               Very clean, very bright, great light but no direct sun, good size room with a nice kitchenette.

            The thermostat on the wall is nice, right beside the bed so if you are too hot/cold in the middle of the night you can lean over and crank up the heat without having to get out of bed.   

          Sometimes hotel rooms could use more plug-ins.  Not this one.  I counted 27 plug ins! (see photos below)  That is enough for all your family electronics and still have plenty to spare.   If you could store and steal electricity this would be the place to do it.  Lots of lights too (11), again maybe a record number, I’ll start counting for next review.

               Very quiet!  Often in a hotel you will hear doors slam as people come and go, I didn’t hear that once in the morning when trying to sleep in, no earplugs required!   I thank the maintenance people at the hotel for understanding that thing on the top of the door that keeps it from slamming.  If I remember correctly it’s simple adjustment, turn the screw left and the door slams like a mad wife leaving you, or turn it right and the door slowly closes and locks like it should.

               I definitely recommend this Econo Lodge, I’ve stayed at a few motels in motel village in Calgary but the value for the money here exceeds all the other places I’ve stayed including the other Econo Lodge! (see review)

If you are OCD continue reading, if you are not you can stop here.

               Showerhead the opposite of the other Econo Lodge, this one I can barely reach and I’m 5’ 9”, at the other Econo Lodge I was bending over like a priest on Sunday.

               Part of the ceiling was missing some paint, showing the primer below.   It didn’t bother my OCD but I did wonder a lot about why just a couple spots on a popcorn ceiling would have no paint?  What would cause paint to peel from a ceiling?   I don’t care if they fix it, but it would be nice to know why.

2017-05-27 16.14.22.jpg

               There was a piece of tape on the wall, higher than I could reach and take down without standing on a wheeled office chair, which at my advanced age is not a great idea.  Yes, I could have called down to the front desk and ask them to remove it but that conversation would not be easy.

Me: “Hi there is a piece of tape on the wall and I can’t reach it.”

Front Desk (with hesitation): “Uhhh okay…..  what kind of tape?

Me: “looks like packing tape”

Front Desk: “Packing tape?”

Me: “Yeah, that light brown tape, 1.75 inches wide by 3 inches long and I can’t reach it”

Front Desk: “No problem sir, we’ll take care of that right away”

And then when the call ends the front desk staff will announce “lunatic in room 509!”

     The tape was still on the wall a week later, but PLEASE do not base your choice of hotels based on that.  I could have told them and I didn’t because I didn’t have much to write about for this stay and I needed the material.

     Stay there, it’s a good place!

     Below is a scene I recorded from my room the video is slightly too long, making it a bit stalkerish but I'm too lazy to edit... just stop watching when you feel like a stalker.

But when I see a Dad being a good Dad I can't resist.

Power Outlets

Lights

Econolodge Crowchild Trail Calgary -- May 2017

              Clean room and great location.  Steps from Denny’s, Boston Pizza and more.  5 min walk to the C-train station (if you walk slow).

          My room (211) had vaulted wood ceilings, not in glamourous way, more of a cabin feel but still very open and airy.  The bed is standard, not too hard, not too soft.  Furniture is dated but goes with the cozy cabin feel and I can’t complain as my clothes are dated as well.  Maybe that’s why I like it, I feel at home.  It also had a balcony which was nice to sit out there and watch the snow fall in Calgary at the end of May.

       If you are visiting someone at the hospital I think you can get a discount, I didn’t ask I just overheard it when I was checking in so don’t take my word for it.  Ask the front end staff, they are friendly.

       I definitely recommend staying here, but if you are OCD then continue to read on for additional details that may affect you.  If not, stop here.

               Not a complaint, but an observation, the shower head is a bit low.  This might be because the tub is elevated off the floor about 6 inches so you do have to step in like you are going over a fence as a kid.  I’m about 5’ 9”, I may be shorter as I hear old people shrink and I’m not a young man anymore.  I had to either bend backward to get my hair wet (dangerous at my age), or bow forward and I REFUSE to bow to anyone, not even a showerhead. 

               The water in the sink goes straight down (no stopper).  For some reason, I was fascinated and annoyed by this, without the splash in the sink everything sticks the sides, which doesn’t bother me but can get crusty for the housekeeping staff quickly.   I guess I could have asked for a rubber stopper but those things are a bit gross even brand new.

               The only thing on the Balcony that might bother you OCD is paint peeling, I had to withhold my urge to start picking it away.

               Let the front desk staff know if any of these things are going to be too much for you, they were very friendly and accommodating when I was there.