29 August, 2006

Phoneable again

Filed under: Montreal by Joel @ 2:55 pm, 29 August 2006.

I will yet tell you all about my adventures in NYC and Toronto, but figure I should update you at least with a phone number. I had decided my prepaid plan and turned up to Fido Wireless in downtown Montreal today at about 4:45. I was a little confused for a while, not sure how to interpret all the people standing around and the two ticket queues labeled in French. After a while I realised these queues were going very slowly and I had better take a ticket, and also identified “service technique” as not something I needed. So I joined a queue, number 318. They were up to 241 or so. I waited some time, and decided waiting was a waste of time, so I went and did some shopping, dragged it back to my room, and at 7pm hurried back to Fido. They were up to 315. I still needed to wait 10 minutes before being served, but I finally got a number.

And here it is (call me!): +1 514 6594 506.

For those of you who are extraordinarily attentive, the last 6 numbers are the same as on my mobile phone in Sydney. A box from Sydney has also arrived in Montreal as I have, so I will soon have a mic to Skype with, among other things, so please catch me there (it’s a lot cheaper than the phonecall).

26 August, 2006

The #1 location for 24/7 street-side kosher garbage

Filed under: USA by Joel @ 8:51 am, 26 August 2006.

While I’m getting annoyances off my back, I thought I’d mention a few others. One is the use of the street as a garbage bin. (more…)

Flushing is not just a place in Queens

Filed under: Travels by Joel @ 8:09 am, 26 August 2006.

Public toilet sign: Units flush automatically for your convenience (more…)

18 August, 2006

Friday’s insanity

Filed under: USA by Joel @ 7:06 am, 18 August 2006.

A little bit of madness has put me on a train to Long Island at 5:11pm on a Friday afternoon. A little bit of madness was a direct result of my overly laid-back attitude to planning ahead and some assumptions that I could have checked but didn’t (always thinking of them at the completely wrong times). (more…)

Museums and Monuments

Filed under: USA by Joel @ 6:49 am, 18 August 2006.

I got into Baltimore at 9pm. From the view of Baltimore that met me, it was a pretty empty and lifeless city. (more…)

16 August, 2006

NYC part 1

Filed under: USA by Joel @ 5:12 pm, 16 August 2006.

I landed in New York’s Laguardia airport on Wednesday the 9th of August with the knowledge that (a) I was staying somewhere in Brooklyn with Hadar’s dad (another friend who went on exchange to Sydney- Hadar, not her dad); (b) She would be in Baltimore, Maryland; (c) I would be leaving for Washington sometime the next week. And I also knew stuff like New York is a Big City, with a Big Subway, and that Brooklyn and Manhattan were different parts (“boroughs”) of the city. More than that, I’d need to work out. (more…)

Subway childhood

Filed under: Poetry,USA by Joel @ 3:20 pm, 16 August 2006.

one, two, three, four
small heads on
small boys
look out as
i pass by, on a
wooden seat, on a
concrete platform
while to them,
i move, with the
tracks, with the

with the tan man
with foreheaded sunglasses
that checks his wrist-watch

with the pale bearded man
devoutly whispering each word
from a hand-held dog-eared book

with the young woman
standing, conversing

with the older woman
frowning, leaning
wood riveted to wall
wall above tracks
where carriages pass

one, two, three, four
keep their arms and eyes inside
the vehicle at all times,
avoid others
dose out a
small slap on a
small wrist of a
small boy
if ever he makes
(back-turned) a
small movement, a
small sound
disturbing a gentle equillibrium
of mixed-flavoured men waiting for
the city street
to open up before them

13 August, 2006

Free in Chicago

Filed under: USA by Joel @ 5:29 pm, 13 August 2006.

Chicago in stained glassSo I of course arrived an hour and 15 minutes late to Chicago. Not because of my regular impunctuality, nor from major traffic, but because we had climbed onto the bus most of an hour late in Memphis. (more…)

11 August, 2006


Filed under: USA by Joel @ 2:39 pm, 11 August 2006.

I’m sorry about being a number of days behind in blogging. One disadvantage of staying in peoples’ homes is that I don’t necessarily have internet access. So while I have photos and a blog entry written up on my computer, at the moment I have no way to access the internet directly from my laptop. So, I’m now in Brooklyn, New York, having spent 5 days in Chicago prior, and I’ll tell you more about it later. For now, sleep.

8 August, 2006

Memphis and multiculture

Filed under: USA by Joel @ 1:57 am, 8 August 2006.

Memphis, the one destination on my itinerary not equipped with hostels (ie dorm accommodation under $30 a night; the 15% hotel tax there doesn’t help). They do have camping grounds, and that’s the optimal solution for some backpackers, but they only become worthwhile with both a tent and a car to hand. So while I was frantically browsing the web in New Orleans to work out what I would do, an opportunity presented itself on Monday night, a day and a half before my bus north. (more…)

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