Sunday, February 06, 2011

On The Train Again....

I had a great visit with my Dad this weekend.

He's able to get up and around and is tons better since the surgery and on the way to a hopefully full recovery. The surgeon went in and widened the canal in the spine and eased the pressure on the nerve, and the differenc eis night and day. All you can see is a 1.5 inc scar on his back and he's looking great and getting around well. Saturday we went out around Toronto and it was his first day out and about in 8 weeks.

For brunch we went to Cora's, a very nice spot for some excellent food and great friendly service. If you're in midtown Toronto I'd highly recommend stopping there for breakfast. Great food, tons of nice fresh fruit and coffee, eggs, crepes and assorted side meats delectable and numerous enough to satisfy the hungriest and most demanding of patrons. In other words, brunch was awesome, and I had good company too.

After brunch we did a bit of shopping. Dad is still not allowed to lift over 10 pounds so I was glad to be there to help carry stuff.

We bought some wine, and in Ontario you can't buy that just anywhere. We had to go to the LCBO, the government run wine/liquor store, as opposed to the imaginately named (and again government run) Beer Store. Musn't let the proles buy it in corner stores -- madness could well result.

The selection wasn't terrible at the LCBO but any Kroger, Hillers, or Meijers would have far more wines on offer for sale and many would offer about the same variety of spirits. Some types of wine were completely missing such as sake and quite a few brands were notable by their absence. Ah well, they like it that way.

Dad was a bit tired so after the shopping we went home and relaxed. I helped him with some computer issues and we watched some episodes of Band of Brothers. Later we had dinner and took it easy and after breakfast this morning I got on this train to head home.

The train's internet service keeps blipping in and out so I can't do any work on my VPN, and we're now only 10 minutes behind schedule.

Getting on the train at Toronto station is an experience.

They don't want you sitting in the relatively comfy chairs by the boarding gate. No, those must be left unoccupied. Instead, they have you line up with everyone until its time to board. VIA customer service seems to consist of a bunch of crabby and rude people. People who feel they missed out on not being elected class commisar at school and are making up for the lost chance to enforce their version of undisclosed rules on others.

It would help if they put up signs telling you which line is for which train. However, that would be informative and would make them lose the opportunity of barking at you for trying to move forward to see what line is for which train. Thankfully I got in the right line so I'm not bound for Ottawa or Montreal at the moment, at least I certainly hope not.

THe internet connection on this train drops the web just about every two minutes or so, making me close out the IE, log back in and then try again momentarily. Pretty frustrating but since we're only 15 minutes behind schedule and coming up on London I probably should be glad to exchange wonky internet access for a relatively timely arrival at Windsor.

Oh, and did I mention the really sharp edges on the arm rests of the seats? Squared off and sharp enough underneadth to draw blood when your leg rubs it as you stand up? Yep, VIA rail is quite a way to travel.

I'll post this while the connection is still good and we'll see if I can reconnect somethime between London and Windsor.

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