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Dad Was Right After All

Relieved as I am to announce that I made it to Toronto safely, something bad did indeed happen to me earlier. Or rather it happened to everybody on the train, and not once, but four times before we made it to Toronto. In order:

a] The train was pulled on to a side track and stopped in order to let another one coming towards us (presumably from Toronto) pass by safely.
b] The train was slowed to 10mph for two miles because it was too hot outside
c] Just outside of London there were signal problems, leading to the train inching forward and stopping for several minutes several times consecutively
d] There was a medical emergency just before we made it to Brantford (allergy-related), and an ambulance had to be called before we could proceed

As such, what originally should've been about three and a half hours on the train (~2pm to ~5:30pm), turned into five hours, because we didn't arrive until about ten after seven. I'm not upset about it or anything, but it's funny how that turned out. On the better side of things though, we were given some compensation for the ultimately-hour-and-a-half delay. All passengers traveling to Toronto (or beyond) today can redeem the receipt portion of their ticket upon their next ticket purchase, in order to get a discount equivalent to half the price of their original ticket, and the offer (to call it that) is valid for the next six months. So what that means for me is that if I go anywhere by train between now and October, all I have to do is show my receipt and $70 will be taken off the ticket price, meaning what, exactly? My trip to London (whenever it may be) has almost certainly been paid for. Last time I went a round trip ticket cost $46 though, so what happens to the other $24? Probably quietly whisked away, but I guess that's fine. For all I know I may end up coming back to Toronto before November, and in that case it would ultimately be less-expensive to pay for a ticket to London instead. We'll see I guess. I'm just happy to be here for now, but going back to being on the train once more, I have to say I appreciate the way they apologized right at the end. All throughout the rest of the trip, whenever one of the above-mentioned delays came up, they would say that they were sure we understood the cause for delay and everything, but then as we were pulling into Union Station, that presumption was dropped, and a new announcement was made that "from the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for your patience. you guys have been awesome" and then the lady making the announcement continued on to mention the same delay-compensation-offer that she had before one last time. All in all a pretty good ending, so now I just hope the return trip goes more smoothly.

That aside though, what happened after I got to Union Station? I followed everybody else just as I had before, except that I somehow wound up in above-ground area this time, so I went right over to the bathroom, and once I was finished there, went back to the underground area, found a chair, and sat down to wait for Dan Skunk. I waited for what felt like ten minutes without seeing any sign of him, so I got back up and grabbed my things, then went over to one of the payphones to call and let him know that I was there, and where I was waiting. After that I went back to sit down for another several minutes, and a short time later I saw who I was waiting for, and we were off. Now, when we'd first started to discuss plans for this second visit, I specifically said that this time I would prefer to come back to the apartment first to unload my things, then go out to Food Basics to get groceries, and after that was done, stop at Tim Hortons or Wendy's (they're both in the same building) on the way home for supper. It makes much more sense to me. Eating first is almost an inefficient use of time (which, yes, is another way of saying "waste of time"), because why do something that serves no practical purpose when there are other things that actually need to be done? Sure, eating is as much of a necessity as anything else, but it just makes more sense to me to put it after other obligations. At any rate, I'm not upset about that either. Just making an observation and such. Also, before I go any further, I should additionally mention that I was able to connect to the internet on the train this time. I don't know if it's just free now, or has been free all along and I didn't know, but I decided to give it a try, and lo, Pidgin suddenly connected, and I was able to open Palemoon and go about things in there just as normal. One of the things I made sure to do first with that was emailing Mom and Dad to say "These delays make me think that Dad was right", and after that, I mostly played StepMania, but also watched an episode of Ghost Whisperer, and started writing a LiveJournal entry, but that didn't go anywhere because I was too tired.

Getting back to arriving in Toronto and meeting up with Dan Skunk now, we discussed our options, and came to the decision to go grocery shopping then, as he brought his backpack along as well and was able to carry all of my baking supplies except for the bag of flour. So off we went, originally to Sobeys, but we actually ended up at some place called "metro" (with a lowercase "m") that had most of the things I needed. Curiously, however, I wasn't able to find graham cracker crumbs or baking soda, but we're going out tomorrow afternoon as well, so I can get those things from Food Basics then. After that, we went over to a different Wendy's for supper, which was followed by walking a couple more blocks to the closest subway station, and from there we came back to the apartment. The first thing I did here (aside from removing my shoes and taking my laptop out of my backpack) was sending Mom and Dad an email to let them know I'd arrived safely, and to tell them what time I'd be coming home next week, so that's taken care of too. I do wish they would reply to confirm that they got those emails, but Mom and Naomi also waited for the train with me, and I gave them the exact same information then, which Mom wrote down on a piece of paper. As for the rest of the night, it's been mostly unremarkable. We watched a movie called Hoodwinked earlier, then I came back to the room I'm sleeping in, played StepMania for a little while longer, talked to Manoah for a bit, and now I'm just writing this before I go to bed. All in all a good night here too, but there have been two things thus far that have... caught me off-guard, shall we say. The first was walking through downtown Toronto to get to the grocery store and to Wendys. It's nothing different from last time I was here, but wow, if it isn't so much busier than Chatham. I've taken for granted being able to walk to work without running into anybody else, whereas here, I'd be surprised if the sidewalks were ever completely empty of people. As for number two, maybe it's just so he knew who to look for, but it was strangely alarming coming into Dan Skunk's room when we got back to the apartment (we're sharing it) and seeing the picture I linked him to before up on his monitor. The one without me wearing a shirt, I might add, which is fine and normal to see on my laptop's screen, but seeing it on somebody else's was another matter entirely. Apparently somebody either wanted to know what I looked like, or he was showing them himself, because he went on to mention the pictures of my tattoo too. Oh, and since that reminded me, there's a new guy here this time. He gave me his name earlier, which I'm ashamed to admit I've forgotten already, but something he said to me shortly after we got back to the apartment was... unique (at least for me). He was telling Dan Skunk that there was still beer in the fridge if he wanted any, and then on his way back out down the hallway, said "Same for the snowy too". First and foremost, the only thing I've had to drink all day is water, and with the exception of pop or juice or somesuch else at Tim Hortons in the days to come, that is all I will have to drink on this trip. The "snowy" remark, however, was neat.

It is about time I was getting to bed now though, but just before that, I have a work-related thing to mention, and more might follow that if I think of anything else. I have the 20th through the 28th off, because I am not in Chatham, and thus unable to work. According to the schedule, however, I have the 20th through 30th off. Yes indeed, my next shift isn't until two days after I get back home, and incidentally falls on the last day of May, but that'll be... different. Sure, when I do get back home the two days will be nice, but what will I do with them? There's a personal purchase I'm hoping to make here which would provide some diversion then, but aside from that, I could vacuum my floor since I didn't get to it before leaving, and that's pretty much it. Maybe, maybe what I could do is have Sunday completely off, and go to London on Monday, but that seems too soon. I don't know, at any rate, but I can if I decide to. As for other odds and ends, oh, I could mention that there is currently a pet rat in this apartment. At this exact moment it is in its cage on the floor beside me, and is here because its owner isn't supposed to have pets in their apartment, and their apartment is up for inspection or something like that soon, so having a pet rat would be an issue. For what it's worth, said rat's name is either "Nim", or "Nimh" (probably the latter, because I think I remember hearing of a movie with that "word" in the title), and I'm presently a bit worried because it scratched me earlier, and the scratch hurt and itched. In all likelihood I shouldn't be worried, because said itching and hurting has gone away now, but between that and it pooping on my bed, the two of us are not off to a good start. Anyways, I'm going to bed. Tomorrow is going to be long, with much baking, so I need to get a good night's sleep~

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