2 min read
28 Apr

After a great couple of days with Jay, Mal and the girls, I boarded a Via Train from Oakville to Ottawa.  Business Class on my connecting train from Toronto was a reasonable cost to have a comfortable seat, free drinks and a gluten free dinner.  The service was super, and, by ordering a wheel chair, I didn’t have to touch my luggage, wait in lines or worry about where and how to get to the connecting train in Union Station.  Everything was done for me, including being taken to and from the VIP lounge to wait for my connection.  Traveling by train is a very relaxing way to go and is now my first choice whenever possible.  Considering the difference compared to flying, because of the hours you have to be at the airport before the flight, the time for boarding the plane before takeoff, the flight time itself, then waiting for your luggage when you land, it’s about the same length of time as going by train but without the turmoil of crowded airports, lineups, and being belted into a small, uncomfortable seat with little leg room.  For me the train is more civilized, less stressful and more enjoyable.

Dee was waiting for me when the train pulled into the Ottawa station.  What a delight to see her after six months of being apart.  It’s been nine days since I left Mexico and I finally arrived at what will be my home for the next six months.  Dee and I both felt like it had only been weeks since we parted last November 1st.  The basement apartment is a perfect size for me.  The new bathroom turned out beautifully – black, white and grey – doesn’t sound like something one would want for a bathroom but you have to see it.  It’s stunning and I love it!

Getting settled is happening slowly.  We decided a dresser for the bedroom and a torchiere lamp for the living room were required, so half a day was spent poring over the websites of Wayfair and Amazon.  Both items arrived within a day after ordering.  I was able to assemble the floor lamp quickly and it lights the living space the way I had hoped.  The dresser will take two of us to assemble it.  “Soon come”, as they say in Jamaica meaning “maybe tomorrow, or maybe next week, or whenever”. 

Calling my doctor on Thursday for an appointment to bring him up to date on the tests I had in Mexico was a surprise.  I got to see him the following afternoon!!  He agreed with the Mexican doctors that my heart failure is stable, but recommended some meds that he explained would help improve my heart’s functioning and is arranging an appointment with a local cardiologist - hopefully within the next six weeks.  Wow!  I’m impressed.  But my medical records from Orillia still haven’t shown up since ordered last October.  

Grocery shopping was a bit of a shock.  Prices are higher than they were when I left six months ago.  And going out for lunch or dinner will be a rare occasion.  

However, Dee and I treated ourselves to dim sum on Wednesday - delicious!   But the restaurant is closing June 2nd after 36 years in business.  The Chinese market next door to it is closing as well.  The large dim sum restaurant in Ottawa’s Chinatown is also closing.  Dim sum is a meal I was most looking forward to but will be difficult to find in the future.  It must be very hard for restauranteurs to remain in business in these days of high cost of living.  Eating out is something that can be given up when trying to save money to pay bills and restaurants, like many small businesses, are suffering.  

My social life is going to be very different from that I experienced the past six months in Mexico.  I have only a few friends here in Ottawa, but I will enjoy having time with Dee and taking a few short trips over the coming months.  I’m looking forward to meeting my twin great-grandsons in North Bay, flying to Colorado for a visit with my granddaughter and her family and arranging to finally bury Don’s ashes in Unionville sometime this summer. There will also be visits here by family and friends.  But I welcome having a quieter social life with few diversions to keep me from working on the paintings I am commissioned to do and from concentrating on writing my memoirs.  I'm going to resume my FaceTime piano lessons from Lynda, my friend in Calgary and continue Duolingo Spanish lessons.  All, except the piano lessons, can be done outdoors on lovely days.  At least – that is my plan.  We’ll see how well that works out..

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