Bicycling The St. Lawrence Seaway

Canada
June 26, ‘82

Hello again journal. In Sarnia, Canada, I caught the train to
Quebec. The baggage transfer on the train was a hassle and the train
ride wasn’t all that pleasant, either. I had a roof over my head, but
I almost froze during the night. When I arrived in Riviere du Loup at
2:30 AM, I waited in the train station until daylight, and then headed
out. The good news was that I was bicycling up the St. Lawrence Seaway
and there were many youth hostels along that route. At $5.50 a night,
and a warm bed to sleep in, I had no reason to complain.

I’m sitting in the Rimouski hostel right now, writing in my journal.
It’s been hard to talk with people. Very little English gets spoken
in Quebec. I wish I could speak French. I would like to add, however,
that the general overall attitude of the people I am experiencing is
much less suffocating than when I was here four years ago; back
then it was not uncommon to be greeted with eye piercing maliciousness
as opposed to “salute.” I suspect the two failed referendums on
Quebec’s independence had something to do with softening up those expressions.
Now I’m seeing more “hi, how are you” greetings, at least in the eyes anyway, and
that means a lot.

I started this day in the rain, and then it turned sunny. I was
pushed forward by the wind–a rare occurrence. I’m sure I’ll
experience some depression before it’s all over, but for now
everything is just fine. Maybe on this trip I will have more good days
than bad. Did I just say that? Naw, I must be dreaming!

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About bwinwnbwi

About me: Marvin Gaye’s song, "What’s Going On" was playing on the jukebox when I went up to the counter and bought another cup of coffee. When I got back, the painting on the wall next to where I was sitting jumped out at me, the same way it had done many times before. On it was written a diatribe on creativity. It was the quote at the bottom, though, that brought me back to this seat time after time. The quote had to do with infinity; it went something like this: Think of yourself as being in that place where infinity comes together in a point; where the infinite past and the infinite future meet, where you are at right now. The quote was attributed to Hermann Hesse, but I didn’t remember reading it in any of the books that I had read by him, so I went out and bought Hesse’s last novel, Magister Ludi. I haven’t found the quote yet, but I haven't tired of looking for it either.
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