Friday, 22 July 2011

On assorted topics, heat-induced ramblings

It has been excrementally hot here in Montreal this last week. Consequently, this post may seem disjointed. (And may contain typos.)

Luckily, I bought an air conditioner about a month ago, so I have been able to sleep, despite the noise of the thing. I resisted getting one for years on the grounds of environmentalism, machismo and sheer inertia. However, either I'm getting older and less tolerant of extreme heat or Montreal is getting more heatwaves.

I bought my unit at a nearby big box hardware store. As the unit weighs roughly 70 lbs, I quietly borrowed one of the store's shopping carts and used it to transport the air conditioner the few blocks to my flat. After hauling it up the stairs, I immediately returned the cart to the store.

It took me a couple of weeks, some duct tape, several magnets, some leftover corroplast and the spirits of Macgyver and Michael Weston to get it properly installed in my window frame. It is now cooling my bedroom, even as I write.

This foresight avoided me having to be a last minute shopper of the variety that I saw this afternoon. As I was locking my biking and going into my gym in the Forum, I saw no less than three people waiting for taxis or significant others to pick them and their new air conditioners up!

Of course, my foresight didn't stop me from biking to the MEC after work on Thursday, in order to pick up a squishy bowl and spork from Margo, through the hottest day so far. Shortly after leaving MEC, I passed a park with a water play area. I parked my bike and dunked my head in a spray of water. Still, the trip was a mite "mad dogs and Englishmen".

On the short arm of coincidence
Earlier this week, Margo and Chris flew in to Moncton to start their Atlantic Canadian trip that will see them meeting me in Deer Lake. As it happened, yesterday, I happened to glance at my brother's blog where I saw that he was in nearby Shediac. I made rapid e-mails and comments to both parties as it would be such a waste if they crossed each others' paths without realizing it. As it turns out, they did see each other near Shediac, so I hope they stopped for a chat and possibly a photo or two. Philip and his family have rarely seen Margo and Chris, so this was a good and fun opportunity. I am not even sure if Chris had ever met Désirée before. I do know that Margo met Philip's family at Alice's wedding.

I like to think that my string pulling caused this meeting. I call the encounter the short arm of coincidence as it isn't extremely unlikely on the whole. Not like bumping into someone from North Hatley in the main square of Cuzco, Peru!

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