Monday, 24 July 2006

Blast From The Past

21 July - The common cold. I presume it was caught in Vancouver but the full effects weren't realised until I hit Montreal - I wish they’d stop sending men into space and focus their efforts on killing this little motherf**ker once and for all. Still, I wasn’t going to let the disease ruin the holiday too much. Today's tourist activities included riding out to the Olympic Stadium and Botanical Jardine - the gardens were, well, they were botanical gardens. Very tranquil and very pretty but not the most exciting place of the city - not helped by the fact that I got lost on the loop (as I approached the end of the loop I went into an exhibit and when I came out I somehow didn’t realise that I was walking back the way I came). One of the better gardens was the sensory garden where you were encouraged to feel and smell the plants - not much good beingable to smell the plants when you have no sense of smell but its nice for the blind people. After I finallyextricated myself from the garden I saw the Insec'arium (i have trouble typing the letter 't') which was ... Well, actually it was ind of boring and full of kids but after that went to the Biodome, four separate environments kind of like a little zoo which was sweeett. Had trouble coping with the amazon rainforest section with the heat and humidity closing in on my blocked sinuses but the laurentian forest and polar regions were very pleasant. Especially interestingwas the north pole and south pole environments on the opposite sides of a room - bizarro world. Ended up sitting in one of montreal's numerous parks and read for a little while - finished 'Guns Germs and steel' a fine treatise on the reasons why the world is like it is - basically, it concludes that the reason why Europe took over the new world and not vice versa was due to the availability of wild vegetation and animals that were suitable for domestication, the fact that it was spread across an east-west axs (foods can be transferred east west but more dififcult north south). Very interesting and a stinging rebuke to those who claim that eurasians had a genetic advantage - however, my personal view is that there is definitely some differences between the races - genes control so much of our physical makeup that it's naiive to believe that the difference between the races is only in appearance - I don’t think any of the races are superior to one another but there are certainly differences beyond the obvious phenotypes. In any event, despite feelinglike crap I new I had only one more night in Montreal and you can't go to montreal without checking out the Village. Wandered up and down st catherine street and settled on the Sky Pub, quite literally a heaving mass of male bodies and they're faghag followers - lots of pretty boys and lots of creepy old men (guess which ones fixated on me???) - had a couple of whiskeys to soothe the throat and watched the fairly decent drag shows (all of the songs in English and all of the interludes in french - maybe they were hilarious but i'll never know - I think the shows ar still better in Sydney) - was reaching the end of my endurance aand was just about to walk out the door when I noticed out of the corner of my eye a familiar face - sure and begorrah if it wasn't my old friend (????) Jordan, on his annual Montreal pilgrimage - first Australian friend I've seen since I saw Messuir templeman and the Chope Clan in England many months ago. Had a nice liittle catchup but I wasn’t reallycapable out much longer but we'll both be back in the sunburnt land soon enough ... Goes to show what a small world we live in.

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