Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Ottawa's Trip for CAGI (1 of 3)

Today was really a roller coaster. I had to stay awake last night to finish some reports. After a gruelling half day with many other things I sent the reports. Oh, man... then I had to quickly catch the train to Ottawa. I almost missed my train because of the slow TTC! It usually took me 30 minutes from North York Station to Union Station, but today the record was 45 minutes! Finally, I could catch my breath when I sat on seat 41 train 4403 bound for Ottawa. I was so tired that I just ignored my grumbling stomach... yeah, I forgot to bring my sandwich!

The train ran on time, at exactly 12:35PM. There were 5 stops before Ottawa: Kingston, Brockville, Smith Falls, and Fallow Fields. The weather was not really good, rain mixed with snow and wind. It's so gloomy and grey outside. I thought I could push myself to read some of the reports... but, soon enough I drifted to dreamland *smile*

The train arrived at Ottawa five minutes before 4:30PM. I needed coffee and something to eat. Unfortunately, there was only one choice, Burger King! I asked one of the lady there whether I could find anything else in this station. No. Nada. So, as I was waiting for my friend to meet me, I was having coffee and chips.

An hour and a 15-minute later, there she was. We took OC Transpo #95 to reach downtown Ottawa. The night was cold with freezing rain and wind. The leftover snow had just added the mess on the streets. We waited for another 15 minutes before her friend picked us up for dinner.

In the car, Phil - her friend - jokingly said, "Why do you have to come today? It's a mess." He wanted to have Chinese food for dinner. I just didn't care. I was too hungry to say anything at all. *smile* The restaurant, named Yang Sheng, was located at Somerset and Bronson. We ordered fish maw soup, fried noodle Singapore style, and braised seafood with vegetable.

Phil, was once an English teacher in Chiba, Japan. He and I agree that there are 3 good things about Japan that we like: good and kind people (friends), good and delicious food, and orderly things (public transportation is always on time). I add cleanliness to that list too. After quite a moment of polite gesture then came a 'controversial' topic. About religion and faith! How an unlikely menu on a cold winter's night. I won't elaborate that discussion here. *smile* Because such discussion is a biggest no-no for most people on earth. *smile* He told me that he wondered why I didn't get emotional or be defensive when he blurted out all his sentiments. Well, I decided a long time ago that it's not worth it to be emotional about it when we're not talking on the same wavelength.

Right after I got at my friend's place, I called Nancy about tomorrow's arrangement. She just returned from her exhaustive day with APWG*... had some upsetting moment with government officers over Palestine-Israel's issue... had some pressing issues with human rights in Indonesia. We talked about half an hour about it. Then, I called Avi, a new friend from Ottawa... couldn't reach him, left a message on his voice-mail and e-mail boxes.

Note: APWG* stands for Asia Pacific Working Group.

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