ms. fresh fish


Winnipeg Roll-Up – Part 1
June 12, 2007, 6:44 am
Filed under: travel

Quel trip to Le Peg…  For those of you not in the know, myself and two co-workers were attending the Annual Canadian Evaluation Society conference. Yes, a far cry from the World Leader meetings I anticipated going to as a child, but hey, we all have to find our place in the machine.

I was sad to be leaving Ottawa on such a beautiful day last Sunday, especially because it meant prematurely ending a lovely visit with my mama, but got into the spirit of things quickly. I knew it was going to be a great trip as soon as I got through security in the Ottawa Airport (where I had the lovely experience of being frisked/massaged randomly while hearing about the frisker/masseuse’s mother-in-law after I told her my M.I.L. had bought me the shoes she just complemented… I’m not going to bother trying to fix that sentence – it’s a write-off (HA!).) . There, standing there in all his glory, was none other than Rick Mercer. I stopped for a moment and debated getting a Lori-special photo (using my extenda-arm) with him but then thought I’d best run down to our gate to get my co-worker Michelle Budak (got that, google?) who is a huge fan of his. I knew she’d be there early, ’cause she’s always early… like me. Sadly, after running eight gates to get her, she responded less than enthusiastically to the idea of running back to get a picture with her love. Besides, she’s fickle and is now in love with Scott Feschuk. Fair enough.

After Michelle became traumatized by watching a suicidal airport bird (you know, the ones that get inside somehow and never get out? Like the random grocery store birds?) commit its final act, we were finally given seats on the plane. For some reason, despite the full-fare tickets, we were still standby, and some of you will recall my experiences flying standby. NOT PRETTY. But this time I was calm, and even joking around with the gate attendant. He clearly didn’t enjoy my sense of humour and public taunting of one of my co-workers as Michelle and I got the two seats at the very back, beside the dysfunctional toilet and the taunted co-worker, disguised as a “techie”, got bumped up to first class to enjoy wine and cheese plates.

The flight was scary, for me at least. I did the whole “grasp the arm rest for my life while gasping dramatically” about three times, much to Michelle’s apparent enjoyment. I tried to distract myself with Music & Lyrics but that only caused me more pain. And readers, don’t learn this lesson the hard way – if you’re flying with someone, start the movie at the same time from the beginning. Don’t decide to synch-up half way through the movie when you’re five minutes apart. It causes conflict. Trust.Me.

Finally arriving in Winnipeg, I was bouncing with excitement. I had finally arrived. The taxi driver told us little tidbits, like that the Golden Boy on the top of the Manitoba Legislature building had been donated by France as a sign of friendship, and that last year it cost Manitoba $3 million to restore it. I love taxi drivers like that – tour guide taxiing is the best way to learn about a city!

Given that we were all starving (except first-class Dave and his frickin’ cheese plate), we dropped our stuff in our room (at the beautiful Fort Garry Hotel) and immediately headed out to where else? The Forks! The beautiful evening, complemented by the array of train paraphenalia, made the night … magical. OK, maybe not magical, but super fun (well, clearly for me more than Dave).

Train in The Forks

After dinner on a patio, by the Red River and almost under the train tracks, we decided to go back to the hotel lounge for dessert. And that’s when we got our celeb sighting #2. Sitting there at a table of about 8 people, in the small, sparsly populated lounge, was Stéphane Dion… eating pizza.

Stephane Dion in Winnipeg

Dave with Dion

 (Dave,”the techie”, with Dion in the white shirt behind him… hard to see, I know)

 We took a bunch of highly conspicuous photos (can you see him in the background?) and then upon his exit, decided to bet on what kind of pizza he’d ordered. Dave was pushing HARD for the Hawaiian. I was insisting that there was a goat’s cheese element. Michelle quietly listened to us debate and then casually picked the winner, which included goat’s cheese. I decided to just pick the most expensive one, sans goat’s cheese, which was wrong. And so, we owed her beer for the next night’s Sens game/pizza party.

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3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

In my defense, I picked the pizza i did because of the MUSHROOMS, not the goat cheese. It doesn’t really matter anyway, since I won..I’m the winner!! lol

Comment by Michelle

Um, I’m assuming you found out some how….but do I really wanna know that you were “cheesy” enough to ask someone what kind of pizza he was eating?!?! OR, do I just know you well enough to know I dont NEED to ask!

Comment by meLissa

BTW…getting bumped to first class on AC Jazz is super sweet. Don’t get me started on the leg room. Enjoy your movie while noshing on a fruit plate and sipping 2nd cup coffee from a real ceramic mug. Hint: When the flight attendant comes ’round with the red wine, take some. You deserve it.

Comment by Dave




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