Blogs from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, North America


North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa July 13th 2019

Leaving by bus for Montreal tomorrow morning. Then overnight KLM to Amsterdam. Last minute packing. Listening to the Dutch band BZN to get into the mood. They’re a Paling Pop band, very strange name meaning Eel Pop, a very unique sound created in the seventies by this band from Volendam. It’s a derivative from the Beatles, mixing in some ABBA sound and the unique one-two step dances from the Netherlands as well as some Vienna waltz melodies. Go to YouTube and check out BZN. Maybe not your taste but I like it!... read more

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa August 16th 2018

This post has the same title as the one just before our Australia trip last Fall. Tomorrow morning early we fly to Vancouver to meet up with Ken & Jan who have kindly offered to put us up for the night and entertain us. And get us to Vancouver Canada Place to board our Star Princess ship on Saturday August 18. Great to be able to put in a family visit on this next adventure! We also look forward to meeting up with Geoff and Joy, and Mark and Kathy, our Australian friends with whom we have talked about this Alaska cruise for several years. That day is here now! The very long-standing friendship between Marion, Joy and Kathy predates any of them having met their current husbands, before kids, before middle age, before senior privileges. ... read more

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa July 2nd 2018

I'm currently on the train to Montreal from Ottawa, and I can say that the first 24 hours have gone pretty much as expected, with one exception. It's hot as hell. I'm lucky to have brought some clothes appropriate for this weather, since I normally try to ESCAPE the heat when I come to Canada. But after I had already bought my plane ticket, the forecast changed dramatically. It's now supposed to be hotter here than it is in Georgia, the place from whose heat I was hoping to escape. One particular item that was last minute, but which has garnered quite a few envious stares and comments, is my Arkansas boonie hat. Wide brim all around and ventilation up top. I put it in my bag literally as I was walking out the door from ... read more
Parliament Hill during Canada Day festivities
Canada Day cookies waiting for me at the hotel!
My very first Canadian passport stamp

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa June 18th 2018

Deep River to Hawkesbury Deep River is famous for being the place where Canada's nuclear industry started and Chalk river has a reactor that produces medical isotopes. I pedalled through these towns after high tailing it out of buggy old Ryan's gifts and camping. Signs appeared warning of slow moving troop vehicles. CFB Petawawa was next up. Over the fence there was a sandy road where camo painted Humvees with heavy machine guns were raising dust clouds as they raced along. Our Canadian army training - perhaps they were getting ready to go peacekeeping in Mali. The base seems like it is pretty big. I never did see the town as the highway bypasses it completely. The highway was flatter and therefore easier to ride but the 1 foot wide paved shoulder had been turned into ... read more
Farmhouse near Renfrew
Michele playing her Uke
Finn, Mike, Michele, Mabel and Caroline

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa September 23rd 2017

(finally completing this September 26 in Brighton, ON) Wary of getting up late and missing my train I slept fitfully, if at all - waking several times during the night. At about 2:30 I turned on the TV to get a time check (it's faster and easier than booting up my chromebook or wandering through the camera settings) and ended up watching the replay of Bologna-Napoli soccer match. It was infinitely better than the Serie 3 game Bob and I had watched part of earlier in the week, but despite its allure (these guys were really good!) I watched only until the end of the first half, figuring I really ought to get some sleep prior to my 23-hour nonstop travel day. (For anyone interested, the game was a scoreless draw when I left it; I ... read more

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa July 30th 2017

I've made it to the nation's capital! Ottawa definitely moves at a slower pace than Toronto. I got here on Saturday afternoon and couldn’t find any reasonably priced restaurants open. And most of the touristy things had closed down by 6PM. It’s not my first time in Ottawa, but it is my first time on a weekend. As one of the ladies walking behind me down Sparks Street said, “Ottawa is all work and no play.” Maybe. My Saturday morning began in Toronto. I got out of my dorm and took the streetcar down Spadina and then to Union Station for my train to Ottawa. I didn’t get any food along the way because most main train stations in large cities have abundant options for food and beverage. Toronto is an exception. They had a Tim ... read more
The Queen's Quay in Toronto
Some Dragon/Machine in front of the Supreme Court in Ottawa
The Alexandra Bridge and Quebec across the river

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa July 7th 2017

Na een comfortabele nacht bij Peggy en Stephane resten er me nog enkele uren voor ik carpool naar Ottawa. Ik ga naar het aquarium. Ik zie er walrussen en ijsberen. Verder zijn de aquaria mooi afgewerkt met een uitgebreid aanbod aan vissoorten, zeer informatief. Op het ogenblik dat ik net rond ben, valt de stroom uit. Tijd om te vertrekken. Ik neem nog even een douche en ga dan naar het rendez-vous punt waar ik Sylvain de chauffeur ontmoet. De fiets gaan achterop en met nog 2 anderen zijn we vertrokken. Na een relatief vlotte rit komen we rond 21u in Ottawa. Men warmshowershost Maryse komt me ophalen. Na nog een hapje duik ik onder de lakens. Ik neem de bus naar het centrum van Ottawa om toeristje te spelen. Ik probeer een begeleid bezoek aan ... read more

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa June 10th 2017

I woke early and was in the queue for the free trip around the Parliament by 8.20 am, there already 50 or so people in front of me, but the tickets are time specific and are gone by 9.30, so that's why I'm here so early. My tour starts at 9.50 so I'm happy. The tour is really interesting, based on our HOP, and House of Lords, it looks very similar, it's very beautiful, with huge marble floors and pillars. There is a painting of every Prime Minister for the past 150 years, even if they were only in the job for a few weeks, l Was looking at them and deciding what kind of a person they were, some were obviously very pompous and "important" while others seemed friendly and laid back, and a couple ... read more
Fire truck but no firemen !
Where all the decisions are made 😵

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa June 9th 2017

I woke early, after a surprisingly comfortable night in my top bunk, it was sunny so I got up to make an early start. I had a sausage and egg wrap and a very un-nice cup of tea in a cafe, before strolling around the main park in Ottawa (that is very small to me, no bigger than Phear Park), however it overlooks the river and a canal so it's in a very beautiful location. I had booked a 2hr walking tour, and was told to be at the Terry Fox satue at 10am, I was there early (horror of horrors) 😱, So I started reading the plaque next to the statue, oh my god it was so moving I started to cry. He was a man born 2 years before me, an cross country athlete ... read more
Ottawa river

North America » Canada » Ontario » Ottawa June 6th 2017

Our group of 18 is just about ready to depart for France. We will have a bike packing night on Sunday and fly from Montreal to Paris on Mon evening. We are spending our first night in a suburb of Paris near the Orly airport, which puts us on the right side of the city for our departure on Wed 14 June. Our itinerary follows- note that there are two routes on every day but the first. The second route also involves more climbing: Wednesday 14 June 2017: Paris (Villeneuve-Saint-Georges) to Montargis, 113 km Thursday 15 June 2017: Montargis to Vezelay, 121 or 137 km Friday 16 June 2017: Vezelay to Saulieu, 95 or 124 km Saturday 17 June 2017: Saulieu to Chalon-sur-Saone, 96 or 123 km Sunday 18 June 2017: Chalon-sur-Saone to Bourg-en-Bresse, 112 or ... read more

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