Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Yeah, But How Far Is That Away?

Below is a map of North America and New Zealand side by side. The red dots are Toronto and Montreal; the blue dots are Boston, New York, and Chicago. If you don't know which are which, you need to learn a little more about the world. Do it now. I'll wait.

I'll be visiting Montreal next week, after Canadian Thanksgiving (which not only comes much earlier in the year than American Thanksgiving, but preceded it historically). The drive is about five or six hours, which by Canadian standards is like popping down to the shops for some milk.

As you can see, New York and Boston are a similar distance, but Chicago takes about nine hours to get to. No other cities worth a damn are anywhere nearby (sorry, Scranton, Pennsylvania).

You may notice the vast blank space north of Toronto. This is filled with Nature, red in tooth and claw, and with Canadians who over-pronounce their vowels and bathe monthly, if only to avoid being rutted by bull moose. The area contains snow, squirrels, trees, good clean honest livin', and other things that you can't sell on the international commodities market. I have no plans to see this part of Canada without a snowmobile, a pair of skis, and a Saint Bernard weighed down with a small flotilla of brandy.

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