Thursday, July 16, 2015
Ottawa, 45˚42′ N 75˚69′ W
I did running around, last minute stuff this morning, but was packed and ready when the incredible photographer Lee Narraway arrived at 2:00 p.m. at my house. We had tea, of course, then called a cab and headed downtown to the Novotel. Dumped our duffles in our room, then walked up to the Chateau Laurier, arriving at the Drawing Room before the 4:00 staff meet and greet.
So nice to see the folks we’ll be travelling with through the Heart of the Arctic – I recognized most of them from their photos on the Adventure Canada website. We pulled the fancy Chateau Laurier chairs into a big circle and introduced ourselves. Then we all donedn our new long sleeved blue shirts with the AC polar bear logo on it – how cool is that! – ready to meet the guests at 6:00 as an identifiable group.
Dave Freeze, our host for the trip, talked a bit about what to expect on an AC adventure cruise. To illustrate, he told a story about a farmer who had a horse, but then lost it, then got it back…. And each time the town folk said he was lucky and his answer was always, “Maybe I’m lucky. Maybe I’m unlucky.” I suppose the moral of the story was it’s all how you look at things. Which I wondered if that was meant as a little foreshadow and maybe things weren’t going to go as planned. But that could be a lucky thing if we thought of it that way.
Then, each staff member introduced her/himself. Lee sang a great introduction about being the trip’s photographer. After a bit of mingling, the guests left and the staff went to the Metropolitan, a bar across the street, for dinner. Everyone dispersed early and Lee and I were back to the hotel and were asleep by 9:00. An unusually early hour for me, but then, we had to get up at an unusually early hour. I set both my phone and the little clock that Stephanie Egan had leant me for 4:30 a.m., just as a precaution.