wednesday, january 13, 1999 12:26:21 pm

what the?  a sign on the ground?  i've GOT to take a picture of this...

you're right. it has been some time since we last spoke, you and i. twenty-four days to be exact. i know, i know, i can be so terrible that way. everyone tells me that i'm horrible at keeping in touch. you're not the only one, you know.

what have i been up to? oh you know, the usual. travelling, bringing my being from one place to another. where? i don't think you should be surprised that i visited toronto, and montreal as well. how did everything go? my, you're full of questions today! okay, okay...

well, toronto. toronto is toronto, is toronto. the same city, the city of my birth, ever changing but always the same. i remember my dad telling a long time ago about how toronto was one of those cities that will never be done. which is true, if you understood what he was getting at. ever since i can remember there has always been some kind of massive construction project happening somewhere in the city. and the same was still going on when i visited. but then i suppose every major city in canada and the us always has some kind of project like that happening, right? who knows. i'm not going to pretend that i do.

things started off in normal fashion - travelling. i imagine that one must always travel in order to reach a destination, i mean it seems impossible (at the moment, but the days of teleportation may be just around the corner!) to plan a trip without travelling, no? so, there we were, my father and i, driving north along i-87, through the wonderful and picturesque adirondack region of new york. i've always enjoyed driving through there. the scenery and hills have always managed to entertain my eyes, which is always important (at least to me) when taking a long drive. we drove rather hastily though, for we knew that snow was right behind us. three hours behind us, if i remember correctly.

well, we made it to montreal in fine fashion. yes, that's right. i forgot to tell you! we drove to montreal so that my father could borrow my car. i just had my tires changed for the winter season, and my dad offered to pay for half of them if he could borrow my car while he was in montreal. him being my father inclined me to agree with his offer. nonetheless, we were in montreal, but my plans were for toronto. so after dropping off various things at melody's place (mel is my father's wife) they brought me to the train station where i proceeded to buy a $170 round trip ticket to toronto.

i slept for most of the train ride. i remember waking up to give the conductor my ticket, and then to welcome some lady into the seat beside me (she looked terribly frustrated, i believe people were not allowing her to sit beside them) and then again when i got a bit hungry. basically, i don't remember much before i woke up and realized that we had reached union station (my destination). i gathered up my things and joined the fray, stepping out into the night air.

the air was cool at first. pleasant, refreshing, almost revitalizing. then after 30 seconds it was fucking freezing. i mean, it wasn't just freezing, it was fucking freezing. the type of freezing where if you were in it, you could only say, "this is fucking freezing!". having no hat to cover my recently reshaved head didn't help much. by the time i got my mother's house my ears were about to fall off, and i was seriously frightened that i might have gotten them frostbitten. i didn't. i think if i did i'd probably have a lot more to say about that.

this is going to be a mighty long, i have come to realize. you want me to keep going? well, if you insist...

okay. how do i sum up my trip to toronto? wonderful. although the weather was slightly frigid, there was no snow, which made things that much easier. i managed to visit sammy, and managed to pull through the day in fine style. no uncomfortable silences and things of that matter, i was quite pleased. she introduced me to her friends, who were slightly... outspoken. yeah, i'd better leave it at that. i also tried to get some bud from tanya (sammy's friend), but those plans eventually fell through. ah well. there's always alcohol. after visiting i managed to see my other friends in toronto, including my ex (rissa) who i had been avoiding at one point of my life, but we had FUN. and things went well. everything went well. i was quite pleased about my trip to toronto.

alas, all trips must end. in a far quicker time than i had expected i once again found myself on the later half of that $170 round trip ticket back to montreal. i think i only stayed in montreal for a night, and then was travelling again back to philadelphia, this time by plane. i was unfortunate enough to have had an old lady sitting beside me who smelled bad, and even worse, told bad stories about things i didn't want to hear about. thank goodness the ride was only an hour and a half.

what did i do when i was back in philadelphia? nothing. nothing out of the ordinary. there were fruitless nights of hookah sessions, bud sessions, drinking sessions, all that pseudo-fun stuff. and then there was new years, which is always a blast. there was a keg of yueng ling lager, bud, whip-its, a hookah, drunk people and bond:goldeneye for n64. a grand evening of wasted fun.

i'm gonna take a break here, i need a drink. do you mind? good.

okay, where was i? oh yes. well, after new years was when the REAL fun started. my plane ride back to montreal was booked for january second. as soon as i woke up on that day, i knew things were not going to be good. snow was falling.

i continued with the stuff i usually did before a trip, packing my back full of goodies to entertain me while in montreal. what? why did i keep taking trips back to montreal? well, i DID have to get my car back to philly, you know. anyhow, i was getting ready, and snow started falling even harder. before i knew it snow was everywhere. i tried to call the person who was going to give me a ride ahead of time so i could get to the airport earlier, but he was still asleep. "damn you alex", i could remember screaming in my head. this was not good.

i continued to pack. get ready. i tried to find another ride. left and right, people were turning me down. i couldn't get a running taxi. shuttles didn't come out to where i lived. snow was falling even harder. i called alex again, and it turns out that he had to go to work. i was beginning to panic. i started to pull favors, but everyone had to decline. accidents were all over i-95 (that's where i have to go in order to get to the airport), and the side roads were all clogged. i was about to break down, when i got a phone call from the USAir. my flight for the afternoon was cancelled. phew.

i rescheduled my flight for the evening, and also convinced alex to give me a ride to the airport anyway. actually, alex decided not to go to work, so it turned out in my favor. he brought me to the airport, snow still blowing around us, at about 6 pm. my flight was for 8:58 pm. fine by me, as being early is much better than being late.

here's the kicker: the flight managed to get pushed back to 10:30 pm, but we actually got on the plane. everything was loaded, and we even taxied out unto the runway. we were about to take off, when the voice of doom boomed over the speaker. "uh, this is your captain speaking. it turns out that montreal has an 11:30 pm noise curfew. the flight has been cancelled. sorry, but thank you for choosing USAirlines.". around me i heard screams of frustration accompanied by cursing.

we pulled back into the terminal and our flights got re booked for the next day. they were also handing out vouchers for hotels, food, transportation, but we couldn't use half of them because taxis and shuttles weren't running because of the weather, and so we couldn't get to a hotel. we ended up standing in a line for an hour to get pillows and blankets, and then in another line to get food. i felt dirty. i needed a shower. i wanted to go home. damnit, i only lived 20 minutes away. it sucked.

so i tried to sleep. young women were sobbing, men were cursing, janitors were waxing the floor, and voices kept booming announcements over the speakers. but i tried to sleep. i think i got about two hours of sleep, accumulated.

the next was not fun either. both re bookings got cancelled. i eventually gave up, and just re booked my flight for the following friday. i guess i would have to live without my car for a week. i called up my father and told him that all flights to montreal were cancelled. i was not happy. so, after living at the airport for 24 hours, i found myself in jacob's car (jacob was nice enough to pick me up) on my way home, silently plotting on how to get back at USAir. i didn't come up with anything.

i got home, took a two hour shower, ate some schlop, and then went to sleep for 15 hours. i was tired.

so, i think that's about it. oh yeah, well, i did eventually get to montreal. i went this weekend, as a matter of fact. it was cold, but i still had a fun time. krys and i went around downtown a lot, saw a couple of movies. i also hung out with kathy. we had FUN. and then my father, krys and i drove my car home. and that's that. i'm tired again. and jacob is going to call me any minute now. so, see you.

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