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[personal profile] mbernardi
Just before 9:00 the lounge, to gate 7 was called, dashed through the drizzle to the Avro RJ85 Flight KLM 2754 which was half empty, my seat 6F was a windowless window seat, be since the flight time was only 40 minutes I didn't bother trying for a different one, even though over half the seats were empty.

Take off was about 12 minutes late, but our arrival at Amsterdam was just after 11:15 local time. My flight on to Montreal didn't leave until 15:20 so I had over an hour to kill. Some of the time I spent viewing pictures from the Rijks Museum Amsterdam, Schiphol.

As I hadn't eaten anything since 5am , apart from a BLT roll on the plane, I used my visa card to buy a small cappuccino, a bacon & egg sandwich, and fruit salad cup which came to €12.30. After eating and drinking this I returned to gate E5 to await boarding flight KLM0671 boarding 14:05

When boarding we had to go through security at the gate, including x-ray and metal detectors. here doesn't appear to be any separation of airport general access and traveler only access.

The plane left of time and a dinner of lamb terrine with mashed potatoes and red vegetable mush (probably tomato) low sodium and served first! with couscous and dried fruit. Fruit salad to finish. drinks provided.I watched Quantum of Solace, and an episode of NCIS that I hadn't seen. tried to doze a bit, and even read a couple of chapters.

Arrived at Montreal around 16:30, through passport control, then baggage claim where I met 3 other fen (2 Dutch, 1 Scots) and we shared a limo to the Delta hotel 50$, which was cheaper per person than a taxi.

It was a lot warmer than I expected, last time I checked it was similar to that in England. Anyway I managed to dig out a map and find the route to my hostel, Le Sous-Bois. It was about as far from the main convention site as the Delta (in the opposite direction). The walk took about 30 minutes, and I went to reception to discover they were no longer using the website I'd booked with! Fortunately they still had beds free, and the daily price was less than originally quoted (189.63$ instead of 271.35$ originally quoted, so ven with the lost deposit it's cheaper). They also took plastic, so I didn't have to hunt an ATM to get cash. I found my bed, cleaned my teeth and crashed by 19:15 local time (but 00:15 my time) twenty hours after getting up!

I'll be taking pictures later as words can't convey the style of the building and it's environs. [I just dropped my PC and it rebooted loosing all my typing from this point! I must remember to save more often.] Each person is allocated a bunk, but it's also a mini room (like the Japanese ones).

I got up on Wednesday morning at 8:45 and left by 9:05 to go around the corner to the Tourist Information Kiosk. Where I got free map and instruction on where the banks were. I stopped off on the way to the convention centre to extract 2004 from my account. Registration opened at 9:00 so I got my goodies and badge. Badges were print on demand and the font used for the name was both large and legible. I discovered that my location was mis-spelt and a replacement was re-printed. The pocket program isn't, being about A4 size and over 100 pages. I was able to get a grid printed on A3ish sized paper, which was much easier to navigate but should have been provided in the original bag. I also had to ask for Jo Walton's Food Guide.

I was getting hungry by now so wandered downstairs looking for food where I met Jan and Larry (from yesterday's limo ride) and was able to pay Jan my part of the fare. Then to Tim Hortons for coffee, bagel and cream cheese, and donut (as the breakfast menu had run out). I felt somewhat disadvantaged not speaking French! Over breakfast scanned the program and ticked of those i wanted to see. Apart from the GoH speeches, masquerade and Hugo awards, art show and dealers room, nothing is must see as far as I can tell.

Found a quite corner with power and typed up the story so far. Now I have to find WiFi access. (the hostel has this so I may upload first thing in future.)

Left originally looking for lunch but got sidetracked into visiting Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal entry was 5.00$ but included a guided tour. Left after 45minutes, for the riverside and the Centre de Sciences de Montreal. Where I managed to get in free by showing my +Plus Science Museum card. normally 12.00$ The first program, for which the wrist band was valid, was called Aqua and started at 16:00, this was followed by Mars 2030 at 16:30, I spent the rest of the afternoon / evening at the museum leaving at 8:30 just before it closed.

Then walked back to my hostel via McDonald's where I had a Big Mac meal. There was supposed to be WiFi but i couldn't get on it. and so back to Le Sous-Bois.

October 2017

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