I'm sitting in Gemma's apartment in Ottawa. I just choked down a health drink Darby made me, and we watched the most recent episode of Girls. I think it may be my favorite HBO comedy, even over Flight of the Conchords.
Unless you count short lay-overs in the Toronto Airport, I haven't been in Ontario for over twenty years. Considering I was born here, I thought it would be nice to have a look around.
We're going jogging in a bit, we want to take some pictures at Parliament, and tonight we're going out for sushi with Gemma.
Because we're on a bit of a schedule, we're not going to see many friends on this trip. But I'm glad we got a chance to see Gemma before she heads for her summer internship at The Edmonton Journal.
Tomorrow we'll hit Montreal, and we're planning to go for lunch with Nicki Ross.
Anyways, I wanted to dump some more photos and write about our last two days on the road. Check it out after the jump:
When we woke up in St. Ignace, our main plan was to drive over the Mackinac Bridge. It looked amazing in the mist. But we nixed that idea when we saw the toll booth, and when we realized we had no idea what was on the other side.
So we took off for the twin cities of Sault St. Marie. Took us about an hour to get there.
We thought we would catch some shit going over the border, and we were ready to confiscate all our fruits and vegetables, but they basically waved us straight through to Canada.
Darby was thrilled to be back in Ontario, since she hadn't been here for nearly a year. Tim Horton's started popping up. She pointed out the Beer Store.
Sault St. Marie doesn't have much going for it. I had to get used to driving in traffic again. It was the first decent-sized city we'd seen since Duluth, but we didn't stick around long.
We stopped for a picnic in Bruce's Mines, a small town on Lake Huron. (Beautiful.) Then we drove for a few hours, only stopping to check out an old settlers' house by the river, which was delapidated and collapsing.
We ended up in Sudbury around dinner time. There was some sort of convention in town, so a few of the motels were fully booked.
Darby hated it, so we ate dinner and kept driving. We ended up in a tiny town called Sturgeon Falls.
Our favorite sign we saw: "WE BUY USED GUNS".
And also: "TIM HORTONS: TWO LOCATIONS IN TWO MINUTES".
My main goal in Ontario was to see Petawawa, the place where I was born.
When we pulled over to take pictures by the sign, we saw a parade of soldiers marching by to a beating drum. My parents met in the military, and this was the base where they met. We drove around a little bit (and almost got towed when we stopped to take pictures), then headed on to Ottawa.
Darby wanted to check out this restaurant called the Zen Kitchen, because the chef went to the culinary school Darby wants to attend in New York. It was a great meal, and afterwards Darby got a chance to talk to the chef.
Then Gemma took us back to her house, and we met up for beers with my ex-boss David Karp. I hadn't seen him in nearly four years.
While we were drinking, I realized the way the four of us were connected: David was my boss the year I got hired at The Whitehorse Star, and he was one of the people who convinced me to go.
If I had never gone, then I would've never been able to get Gemma the job three years later. If Gemma hadn't gotten the job, I would have never gone back. And if I had never gone back, I would've never met Darby.
After beers we walked over to the Parliament and took some shitty iPhone photos. Darby wanted to see the cat sanctuary. I promise we'll take some better shots today.
Then we got back to Gemma's place and watched Girls. Both Gemma and Darby are obsessed with it, because it is the story of their lives. (If you haven't watched it yet, you should.)
Well, that's it for now.