I don’t mean from Toronto to Auckland. I mean in this daft hotel. 23 floors fully booked and two of the four lifts are out of order. Loads of frustrated people waiting up to 15 minutes to get into a lift.
The dinner last night went well. The Honourable Company of Freemen of the City of London of North America does its dinner like a lightweight and friendly version of a City Livery dinner. All the elements are there, but no one has much idea what they are doing. The difference is that they don’t care and it is all great fun, just as it really should be.
The dinner was at the National Club in Toronto.
My speech was probably about 7 minutes and everyone who commented said it was short. That is compliment enough for me. As I always say on the course I lead in London for those who give speeches at black tie dinners (yes I really do lead such a course): no one ever left a dinner saying that was nice; shame the speech was too short. Quite the contrary.
Ishrani, the Master, also spoke well.
I walked home and on the way, in the middle of the city, I encountered a raccoon!
After a slow morning I went to meet Ishrani to go for a walk by the Humber River. This involved my first encounter with the subway. It appears this is neither a medium sized baguette nor a pedestrian road crossing, but the underground train! Another example of nations divided by a common language. (Next I go to NZ and Australia, and they no doubt will try to confuse me further with their re-invented versions of plain English.) But worse is to come on this theme before I leave today’s blog.
I saw that all the machines were for topping up pre-pay cards, so I went to the booth. I asked for a return ticket to Old Mill. The woman looked at me as though I had two heads and had spoken some obscure ancient dialect. A nice local behind me explained that they don’t do return tickets and I had to buy a single and another on the way back. Fair enough. I now know how it works – just in time to leave the country.
I got out to Old Mill, which is the area Ishrani lives in. We went for a love gentle walk by the river. There are two weirs on the river. I forgot to check what the Canadian version of our language might be for that. But here are the pics, anyway.
I gently pointed out, as you would expect, that it was hardly Niagara. I believe she said something like ‘humph’!
We then went for an early supper at the Old Mill House Pub. We both decided to order Mac n Cheese, me with chicken and she with Salmon. A lovely and very tasty dish of penne pasta and cheese arrived. Now call me an old pedant if you will, but Mac n Cheese is supposed to be made with macaroni, not penne. The clue is in the title of the dish! But I let this outrageous error pass without comment. You would have been proud of my self control. Or was it just that by this stage I knew no-one would understand any valiant attempt to make the point to the chef!
Another fun day, full of my usual obscure observations! Tomorrow I plan to behave. I have booked an hour slot in the morning for that.