Yes, I’m already back in Montréal! I think I made the Halifax-Montréal trip in record time (for me): it was something like 8:15 am EDT on Junior’s clock when we drove away from BeeGoddessM and Stephanie‘s home and I was sitting at this computer around 9:30 pm EDT.
It’s not like I didn’t stop. In fact, I stopped six times: in Moncton to drop off BeeGoddessC and some lunch at Deluxe French Fries (thanks again!); a pee and pop stop in Woodstock; a pee, coffee and gas stop in Edmundston; two pee stops (due to all that pop and coffee) between Rivière-du-Loup and Québec City, and a gas and pee stop just west of Drummondville where I also picked up a cheap bottle of wine for when I would get home. It was dark only for the last hour or so, and it would have been less than that had traffic not come to a crawl on the Autoroute 30 bypass south of Montréal.
Although too short to see everybody, what a wonderful trip it was! I think a sign of a good trip is that, when I arrived home, it felt like I had been away much, much longer. The trip served as a total disconnect.
I left Montréal as planned last Tuesday when I realized that Junior’s breaks were fine enough for the trip. I did get them checked in Moncton, and the mechanic was as surprised as I was that the breaks on a 7-year-old Cavalier with 100K km are only half worn. I did get the rear break shoes changed when he recommended it should be done by late fall or early spring. Knowing how I can procrastinate with such things, I figured it was better to just go ahead with that fix right away.
I spent two full days with Mom before heading to Halifax on Friday afternoon, with BeeGoddessC driving shotgun. What followed was four blissful days of total relaxing, learning a new card game, and eating like royalty at BeeGoddessM and Stephanie’s bungalow palace and enchanted garden. I also dropped in on Saddam and his brother-in-law Mu’ammar who now runs a fish-and-chip joint; briefly saw Jain (a.k.a. Pastry Monster) although she couldn’t come to Montréal in the end; spent a day with Indiana Jones at Crystal Crescent, an afternoon by the ocean with the Queen of Sheba and an early evening with La Chelita. In other words, I ran out of time to see nearly a dozen other people, but I plan to return to the Maritimes for my next vacation in October, so……
Twice since I’ve been on vacation, I peeked (without actually signing in) to see how things are going at work, and both times I felt like screaming afterwards. It looks like I’ll be coming back to a mess that easily could have been prevented. But, as I told BeeGoddessM after I looked the second time, I’ll just have to learn to be the unquestioning automaton they — or at least my *(@$&!@ supervisor — want(s) me to be.
Meanwhile, I’m happy to be back in MY town for a few days of doing whatever I please, whenever I please. Seeing the Montréal skyline as I crossed the Champlain Bridge yesterday evening, I truly felt like I was coming home, just as while I was in the Maritimes, I felt like a visitor. I guess I’ve officially become a Montréalais whose only beef with the place is the distance from his best friends and the ocean.