Back in the deep distant days of my youth there was a joke about a tribe of Pygmies who were so short that they were first identified by their exasperated cries of “Werefackarwi! Werefackawi!” as they desperately leapt up and down in the Elephant grass, trying to find identifiable landmarks and avoid being trodden on by careless passing herds of grazing fauna. A sad fate that overtook the last known group in 2013 when the last of the tribal elders was found plated to the bottom of some Elephant tracks near the Namibian border. Whenever it comes to Montreal’s road system I feel equally lost as those now extinct natives of Sub-Saharan Africa. Leading to Mrs S and I repeating their famous lament ad nauseum.
All this despite Satnag and a reasonable map of the area. The problem is, what these shiny, whizzy techno-thingies never tell you is that some clever dick has stuck a concrete divider exactly where you want to change lanes to get to your exit, and unless you’re a local, won’t have a clue how to get back on the right track. Don’t forget the road surfaces, which readily conjure up the adjective ‘corrugated’. Honestly, I don’t see how the self-driving car is ever going to become a reality if the very satellite navigation system it runs on is this unreliable. I’m told the technology is coming on in leaps and bounds, but frankly me dears, this is probably why they keep crashing.
As you can probably tell, my last remaining reader, we’ve been out of touch of all media, both online and off. No TV, bugger all in the way of reliable Interweb yet having a jolly nice time. For example, yesterday saw me chilling and alternately toasting at a Nordic Spa, which in methodology resembles the mechanics of a Roman Bath house. Steam Room, Sauna, Warm pool, cold plunge, rest area and even some sunshine to try and spread my ‘farmers tan’ a little further than merely my arms face, and neck. You know, if I ever make a million or two I’m going to have a house with a Nordic spa built in, and sod the renewables hyped cost of Electricity. Although I’d probably go for some kind of wood stove heating for the Sauna and Steam rooms. Wonder if I could get a couple of decent female body slaves to scrape scented oil off me with Strigils? On second thoughts, better not. My wife is a jealous woman, and would insist on the body slave being male, which would kind of take all the fun out of things. Oh well. A chap can dream.
As for satellite navigation, we’ve decided that it’s not the most reliable way of getting from A to B, and have fallen back on good old fashioned paper maps and dead reckoning as the rain catches up with us after a rather pleasant five day hiatus of sunshine and cloud. Tomorrow sees us scooting out into the wilds of Northern Ontario, which means more rocks, more trees, more rain. Hi ho.
So what have we missed? Not a lot by the look of things. BREXIT grinds on and that Trump fellow south of the border continues to raise the blood pressure of a lot of deserving people. I occasionally find myself wondering about who will be the first of them to collapse and die, having first worked themselves into a froth over his twitter feed.
The only real blots on my particular landscape are other people’s screaming kids and a windscreen with a spreading crack, which will require replacement. The crack first started when we were following a truck in Manitoba. There was a bang on our insect encrusted glass, and when I cleaned the charnel house of insect remains off the glass a couple of hundred kilometres later, found a two inch split from a single mini starburst on the drivers side. Now the crack has spread to over a foot and a half long, and a windscreen replacement will be the order of the day when we get home in three weeks. Hey, we’re insured and our little Subaru will be getting a full service as well. It’s also going to be the last of these continent crossing road trips for us. While we love parts of Quebec and fully intend returning because it’s the one place in Canada with any real style, next time we fly. It will probably end up cheaper.