Yellow Head Trail - Rosetown Part 7 of 8
The Chip Wagon
Bus Number 92
The Chip Wagon
The City of Ottawa is a tourists delight with so much to offer summer and winter. The big tickets of course are the Parliament Buildings; the National Art Gallery; the National War Museum; the Rideau Canal; the Byward Market and so much more. What I found especially new and exciting is the redesign and rebuilding of the former Landsdowne Park area where the Football Stadium used to be. Its now a chic market area with restaurants and boutiques of all kinds and its a real pleasure to visit. Also, Ottawa is fine dining at its very best. There are no shortages of excellent restaurants open in all parts of the city all day long, every day. Having lived and worked there for nearly half of my life however I've seen this - done that - so to speak. Call me finicky if you like but I have a special place I like to visit that I wouldn't trade for all the tea in China. Its the local chip wagon which I usually have to visit when my loving daughter is not around because she calls it "Cholesterol City". They have the best tasting hot dogs and hamburgers in the country but where they really get you is with their "Poutine". This is french-fries made with Quebec potatoes and covered in melted St. Albert cheese with gravy. You guys in BC have never tasted anything as delightful as this Poutine. You don't know what you are missing. The dining area is eight large outdoor pic-nic tables each with an umbrella in case it rains. And,....guess what you do while you're having dinner? ....You are watching traffic of course. I have to admit that I often over-stuff myself when I visit this Chip Wagon when I go to Ottawa. I'm no fool though. I usually take a couple of low-dose aspirins before leaving just to make sure I'm good to go.
Bus Number 92
For part of the time I stayed with my son in Kanata which is a satellite City west of Ottawa. Since I didn't have transportation for the 30 Kms trip to downtown Ottawa and there was a bus stop conveniently placed just outside his front door, I thought "Why not?" I'll try taking the city bus for once. It was a Tuesday morning about 9:00am when bus number 92 arrived. "Are you going to the St. Laurent Shopping Plaza in Ottawa, driver?" "Yes Sir I am - hop on." I began to fiddle for some change but the driver told me that Tuesday was senior's day and my ride was free. It was not a short ride because of all the detours and construction taking place resulting from work on the new Light Rail Transit System that Ottawa has undertaken to build. Eventually, however, we arrived at the transit station for the St. Laurent Shopping Centre. The driver caught my eye and said "St. Laurent Station - Terminus Station". My trip was so pleasant that I thought I'd repeat the same trip on the same bus at the same time on the very next day. It was a different driver this time, a non-talker, but it was still the same bus number 92 so I hopped on. When we arrived at the Hurdman Transit Station the driver announced "Hurdman Station - Terminus Station." Hurdman Station was not St. Laurent Station so I explained to the driver that I had taken this same bus; from the same bus station; at exactly the same time yesterday so I asked him why wasn't he going to the St. Laurent Station like yesterday. "Because Sir! Some days I terminate at St. Laurent and some days I terminate here at Hurdman. "I'm from out of town so how on earth am I supposed to know that?" I said, just a little agitated. He told me that it was no big deal. All I needed to do was take one of the other buses to St. Laurent. Try a number 95. Now I remember why I gave up using Ottawa's OC Transpo buses decades ago.
After living so many years in Ottawa I thought I'd seen everything it had to offer but I was wrong. I'd missed getting to know a very up-scale older suburb called New Edinburgh. My daughter had recently got a new job near that area of town close to the Parliament Buildings and the Rideau Canal and she asked me to join her for an outdoor lunch towards the end of my stay. It was called Stanley Park and it took me by surprise. After seeing the Parliament Buildings more times than you can shake a stick at - I had never seen them from the rear-end. They look far more tranquil, majestic and pleasing to the eye than staring at them from the street-side directly head-on. I could appreciate the raw beauty of the architecture without seeing the voluminous over-heated clouds of hot-air arising from the House of Commons during Question Period. From Stanley Park you can better appreciate the tranquillity of the Rideau Canal; the horticultural beauty of its gardens and the miles of quiet walking trails seemingly for miles. Its also a leash-free area where doggie-owners can cut their little beasts loose allowing them to roam free - unshackled. I thanked Alison for bringing me down here. It will be on my places to see on my next visit. Stanley Park is a definite "must see" for all visiting tourists, young and old.