Lost in the barrens


in Canada, Daily updates, Ottawa

Parliament buildings, Ottawa

Today began with a bit of an adventure. I caught my bus around 7:00am, noting that the last stop (Lebreton) was due south of my work, on the opposite side of the river. It was only as the bus sped past Lebreton that it occurred to me that it might not stop. I was then left two kilometres down a major highway from the only road I knew for sure led to work.

With little choice, I began walking up the highway. Within three minutes, an Ontario police cruiser had pulled over, and the officer had indicated in no uncertain terms that walking along the highway was unacceptable. After explaining my situation, I was told to go north along a dusty gravel path until I found a bridge. Cursing my brand new shoes with each step, I went about half a kilometre up the path and found a rusty railway trestle bridge going across to Gatineau. Since I didn’t want to die under a train before my first day of work, I followed the river east until I found the Portage Bridge.

Despite the ordeal, I was in the security office waiting for my temporary pass fifteen minutes before the earliest suggested time. By the end of the day, I had a working computer, a working phone, lots of newly introduced colleagues, and plenty to read. I still don’t know exactly what I am going to do there, but the atmosphere of the office was very encouraging.

Furthermore, I found a possible apartment. It is on Cooper Street: a small one bedroom for a good price. It even has a private entrance, in the form of a door opening on the side of an unusually nice and well maintained low-rise brick building. The hardwood floors are nice, the maintenance staff seem very helpful, and there is an appealing overhead fan. The only real problem is the kitchen, which is very small and awkwardly shaped. Also, the bedroom is too small for a double bed. If I take it, I will use the living room as a bedroom and the bedroom as an office. Replacing the mid-size fridge with a bar fridge might also make the kitchen more workable. Unless I find somewhere markedly better soon, I may well take this place on a one year lease.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

R.K. July 16, 2007 at 6:54 pm

This video is quite funny. Trojan Horses and Aussie accents.

Milan July 16, 2007 at 5:34 pm

Come to think of it, that police officer could have been concerned with (a) preventing me from illegally walking beside the road (b) reducing the chances of me getting hurt. In either case, telling me to walk across a railway bridge was a puzzling move. Perhaps he assumed I would not do so, and would wander until I found another crossing.

Oana July 16, 2007 at 5:49 pm

Yikes, that’s quite the adventure! Look at it as an adventure – you would have been way early had you gotten off at the right stop.

Milan July 16, 2007 at 6:10 pm

My present ranking of places that have been considered:

1) 91 Florence St, apt 2 (seems it went to someone else)
2) 254 Cooper St (the one described in the post above)
3) 340 Cooper
4) 62 James tied with 196 Metcalfe
5) 117 Charlotte
6) 248 Guigues Ave

Antonia July 17, 2007 at 6:21 am

Well, I’m glad the journey in was the worst thing about your first day in the job and that things were so promising once you arrived. Sounds like a strong case for another bicycle.

Anon July 17, 2007 at 8:56 am

The King Review of low-carbon cars

The Review will examine the vehicle and fuel technologies which over the next 25 years could help to decarbonise road transport, particularly cars. It will be led by Professor Julia King, Vice-Chancellor of Aston University and former Director of Advanced Engineering at Rolls-Royce plc, working with Sir Nicholas Stern.

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