Day 13: Montreal - Grampies' Grand Adventure Summer 2015 - CycleBlaze

July 15, 2015

Day 13: Montreal

All organized. Laurie was surprised that the whole mess compressed to this. That was before we nformed her of the pile of gear now stored in her basement.
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One last story before the Grampies move on to Phase II
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The advantage of a night flight is that you sort of don't lose any time, assuming that you succeed in doing your sleeping while in the air. Lately I have been listening to Physics lectures on my iPod at bedtime, since these are guaranteed to put me to sleep. Air Canada helped out this time with a Nova episode that I found in their in-flight entertainment, about physics and mathematics. Before I conked out, I appreciated the thesis of this - that mathematics has been so successful in describing the world it could be that actually the world is made from mathematics. That would be touching on the idea that we are living in "The Matrix". Great bedtime stuff!

Arriving in Toronto, we were of course back in our home country. One immediately apparent difference from Seattle is the extent of ethnic diversity, though Seattle too is in fact quite diverse. The weird part is that I was looking at the people in Toronto, especially those of East Indian background, and feelings it's good to be home, with all these obvious "Canadians" around. Weird.

We were able to collect our bags from the carousel and find a minivan to take us and the pile of gear downtown with a minimum of big city fuss. Notably there was no hype about what the cost of the van would be, no touts or cons artists. I am not saying that I expected any problem, but big city airports can sometimes be a jungle.

We were able to reunite with Josh and Sabrina, and Amelia, Evelyn and Joseph - dragging our the various gifts we had brought, to universal acclaim. We dropped by a recently completed wading pool with the kids, and again were pleasantly surprised. The City had provided a wonderful, free facility, with change rooms and two lifeguards on duty. This adjoined a park with kids' play equipment, and with many tennis courts. All very civilised, and making it feel that the inner city was the place to find, rather than the place to lack, services.

At the pool we ran into Gale and Agnes, and their two kids, Elise and baby Marion. Gale and Agnes are originally from Lyon, and have lived in Anger. As I described our upcoming European itinerary to Agnes, she was puzzled by several of the places I mentioned. It was a matter of pronunciation. For example Basel, Switzerland is Bâle, in French, Fine, but this is pronounced ball like in ballad not ball like in baseball. So Agnes had no idea where I was talking about. Grrr. I am just not good with languages!

At the pool, I took a photo of our kids in new hoodie style towels we had brought. I immediately got jumped by one of the lifeguards, and had to get Agnes to translate the torrent of retribution I received. Apparently there are no photos permitted at the wading pool. This is actually not some weird Quebec cultural thing, because I recall a similar problem in the States. I am defiantly publishing my illicit photo, notwithstanding. (Coming soon).

I took 2 1/2 hours to reassemble the two Fridays. Jet lagged or not, this seems to be just about the true time needed for the chore. So that's and hour and a quarter each. Reasonable? It's good to know this timing, for next time we are trying the stunt in an airport, maybe with dark coming or a long cycle ahead on the same day.

We passed out periodically through the day, just unable to stay awake. Now, at 10 p.m., we have had it and are turning in for the night. Meanwhile the family has headed out to see a major fireworks display, again something put on by the City. I can hear the booming from where I sit, and it would have been nice to go. But apparently we do not have the stamina right now of even 18 month old Joseph. Oh well, watch for photos - tomorrow!

Now in Montreal, Joseph assists with the Bike Friday assembly.
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The suitcases are now empty, except for one toddler. His Tee shirt by the way says "wenn Mama + Papa nein sagen, frage ich Oma + Opa" the classical "when Mama and Poppa say no, I ask Grandma and Grandpa" - a good souvenir (for us anyway) of cycling in Germany last year.
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With the girls at daycare, Joseph was our only helper.
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The illicit pool shot.
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The whole family, shot just outside the "no photos" zone.
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