There is nothing closer to welding without a face shield, than driving into the Southern Alberta sunrise at mid morning. At the end of the burning road, not a magic Irish dwarf on a pot a gold, but a conservative shopping netherworld, where the trees are held down with cable, and the Wild Rosers chase the freaks through the grain and barbwire, the lovely and potent Lethbridge, Alberta. What's that early morning pong? Is that meat rendering, is Leatherface boiling tourists in the piggy barn? It's smells like... Lethbridge.
The odours bring me back to my college days of fist fighting rednecks at Essie's and being ejected into the hard, frozen snow. The dead cold Southern Alberta wind bringing you to consciousness after a good cowboy beating, magical. Ah memories... All those 3am steak and eggs at Humpty's restaurant with Elvis from Magrath... Oh look, it's noon. Let's find a pub.
The Telegraph Tap House is a great new spot in a nifty brick building just off third. They have 18 beer taps, most excellent. I found it hard to stop drinking the Maredsous 10 from Belgium. The ten denoting the alcohol percentage. After four pints I was ready for round one, just like the old days. As Henry Chanaski said, "I got the guts, but the guts need fuel." Which brings us to brunch and the Dead Albertan. The Dead Albertan is two grill cheese sandwiches with a house made burger between the cheesiness. It weighs in at 6inches, 840 calories. It is a decedent, fat kid loving, hide in the corner with a bib sort of happening. You definitely feel like a criminal biting into this monster. I have noticed this trendy food item popping up on menus all over the place. Time will tell if it will roar into the dumpster with the dreaded hipster yam fries or be a contender. If this sandwich doesn't cause a Fred Sandford tightness in your chest nothing will.
So once the liquor is calling the shots and you wander off into the meat tinged Alberta night, you get lost chasing a white buffalo crossing the High Level bridge and fall deep into the brambles at the bottom of a coulee, winter crawls into your bones and the boatman is floating slowly towards you down the Oldman River, you can die knowing with some merriment, that you have a head full of European beer and a Dead Albertan wallows in your gut.