Strange Cargo

Lessons from the Jack London Finishing School

Friday, July 28, 2006

7276 - Parles vouz francais?

Montreal,QC

J'ai des rêves doux d'une beau brun quand voix du Grillon entre mon rêve avec les mots : "Nous sommes dans Montréal!" Mes yeux volent ouvert et dans le crépuscule de matin je peux voir des cylindres saints sur un côté de moi et navire-citernes et grainers sur l'autre. Il n'y a rien autrement que notre train se déplaçant dans cette partie de yard de Lachine de CN dans Montréal d'est. Nous sommes en bas à peut-être 10 Miles a l'heure et le rythmic a pensé à la court-barre sous les roues est comme un métronome chronométrant le rite descendre d'un train. Nous libérons sous caution d'avant que le train disparaît dans la facilité de intermodal.
OK, in english now...

I'm having sweet dreams of the worlds most beautiful brunette when Cricket's voice enters my dream with the words: "We're in Montreal!" My eyes fly open and in the dusk of morning I can see holy rollers on one side of me and tankers and grainers on the other. There is nothing other than our train moving in this part of CN's Lachine yard in Montreal. We're down to maybe 10 MPH and the rythmic thunk of short-rail under the wheels is like a metronome timing the detraining ritual. We bail off before the train disappears into the intermodal facility. This yard is gigantic and actually has its own unique streetsigns marking the roads within.

After traversing a few cuts of cars we affix our respective monikers on a signal hut and then bushwhack it out of the yard and into a park in the Cotes St. Luc neighborhood. There is a nice secluded spot under some trees and we nap for a few hours while the city comes to life. Later on I make my way down to a service station and manage to get a key to the bathroom despite my dirt tan and rather aromatic presence. The scrubdown commences with me stripping down and shaving, then scrubbing more dirt off before putting on some cleaner clothes. I go back to the park and soon thereafter Josh has supplied us breakfast/lunch in the form of tomatoes, avocados, cheese, baba gannouj and flatbread. This sure hits the spot.

A few phonecalls are made and soon we're back on city transit to go to a friends house near St. Henri. The subway system in Montreal is super efficient and it's really easy to get around. We arrive at the house, which is a stronghold of anarchist ideology and the creative headquarters of the Punk band Ballast. The front door is not locked so we walk in and are greeted by Dave who has no idea who we are but welcomes us just the same. Cricket and I walk off in search of laundry detergent and beer, and procuring both we go back to the house to wash our clothes and hang out.

This is where I will part ways with Josh & Cricket as they are returning to the states via St. Albans,NY where they will be catching a shortline down to Selkirk. We're sleeping here tonight and then they are taking off tomorrow morning. If it is cool with my hosts I will stay here for a few days to see the city as I hear it is very scenic, with lots of culture.

5 Comments:

  • At 11:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hans it has been a while. Think of you often when recalling parts of our trip. It's great to have you writting as such because it offers us viewers an a abundance of images to link together to give us a sense of where your at. I miss you buddy. Madison

     
  • At 12:06 AM, Anonymous Rodney said…

    Ha ha...that's funny.. I was harassed by a Go Train or whatever they call it in Montreal. Make sure you catch out at the Agrinon cc eh, and I hope you run into the Just For Laughs Festival on St Denis St. Very entertaining. Don't forget to check out the 'Commons' across from the school and CBC building is where they should be. Cheers!

     
  • At 12:07 AM, Anonymous rodney said…

    Hans...I mean the 'Commons' in HALIFAX of course.

     
  • At 12:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Hans,
    Good travels I see.

    I'm glad you are having such a good trip so far. you're eating better than I am these days. Pass me some hummus.

    My friends in Europe were wondering where someone rides a freight car, so I had to google up some freight car pics and explain the process. :)

    Train Geek Boy (waves to Madison)

     
  • At 8:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    hey! i'm in boston! the craigslist ride was pretty darn sketchy with the inside ceiling light falling off and revealing a mound of SOMETHING taped to the inside of it before our drivers laughed and put the light back into place... oops! we hung out in montpelier for two days with our friends and then hitched it to boston after waiting for the NECR for 10 hours to no avail... josh left two days ago from boston willard/columbus/russell/erwin bound...

     

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