Sunday, September 29, 2013

A Knitter's Review and a ship inspection in Montreal

I'm always happy to see the newsletter, A Knitter's Review written by Clara Parkes in my inbox. It's one of the few such publications which I find informative. This issue gave detailed instructions on unravelling and treating the yarn from an unhappy project, whether completed or not. I like the way Clara explains the reasons behind the steps in the process. She also has written another book, entitled the A Yarn Whisperer and has a number of visits to bookstores in the U.S., and even one in Toronto, to promote the book.. 

I went to Montreal last week for an event sponsored by Oceania Cruise line, and a visit to one of their ships, called the Regatta. I took a VIA train from Ottawa for the day and was amazed at how many people were on the 0629 departure. The train station in Montreal is centrally located (where all train stations should be) and on arrival there were large crowds who were no doubt hurrying to work.

I treated myself to breakfast at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth Hotel (conveniently situated as part of a large complex of offices and stores) just above the station. My plan was to sit in the lobby and get caught up with emails before going to the dock to visit the ship, but was surprised that the hotel charged $13.95/day plus taxes to access their WiFi. Decided not to do this.

Before going to the cruise terminal, I learned an important lesson: not all taxis in Montreal accept credit cards. As I had neglected to go to an ABM, I knew that this could be a problem, as I didn't have time before the cruise event started to find a cash machine. The helpful doorman at the hotel went to a number of cars before he found one who would accept payment with a card. My spoken French is very rusty and both drivers spoke less English than I did French. (One was from Morocco and the other from the Caribbean.) I was pleased that some basic French came back to me, especially when one said "You speak French". I gave him a really good tip!

All in all it was an enjoyable visit to Montreal--I learned about the ship, visited a number of cabins on board, enjoyed an outstanding lunch and more so, a treat to just be in this cosmopolitan, attractive city.


No comments: