Monday, June 21, 2010

Stories from the 2010 Canadian Odyssey

Circuit City, Polo Park
Mentioning I was living in China, I was asked by the clerk what it was like there.  I told him how, in some ways, there is more freedom in China.  The clerk nodding at this, talked about the proclivities of Canadian government to increase their control of the population, citing a new law being passed to ban the use of cell phones in cars.  He then talked about the increased use of photo radar in Winnipeg, telling me cameras were being placed in areas where people do inadvertently speed, like just after leaving construction zones -- victim less crimes.  I told him of a cab driver I read about in the lower mainland of Vancouver getting a 1150 dollar fine because he picked up a cop pretending to be a frantically waving customer.  The driver was fined for picking up someone out of his zone or whatever nonsense regulation.  In China, I told the clerk, you can much more easily find a driver -- there being a transport network not controlled by the government.

The True North Strong and Fee!

In Brandon, I saw a man dressed with a black cowboy hat, black t-shirt, black pants, and black cowboy boots.

Other people were wearing shorts and sandals.

Jenny's view of the drive from Brandon to Winnipeg
I have frequently described the drive from Brandon to Winnipeg to my students in China.  I have told them how flat and unpopulated is the land between the two biggest cities in Manitoba.  Now, one of them: Jenny, can say she has seen it. 

My immediate personal sensation was how quickly boredom set in on the two hour drive.  At first, seeing the big sky and flatness of the terrain for the first time in years was great, but after 45 minutes the drive began to wear on me.  Jenny's opinions of it kept the drive interesting.

To her the land seemed like the wild.  Where can people go shopping? she asked.  She also observed that it must be easy to kill someone and get rid of the body in the area.

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