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Weather in Ottawa, how fun!

So here I sit in the Ottawa airport waiting to see if I’ll get home.  I woke up this morning to what didn’t look like too bad of a day out my hotel window.  However as soon as I got outside I realized that I was very much wrong about the weather. 

I rolled my stuff over bumpy frozen ground out to my rental car in the parking lot.  It was completely covered in ice, but no big deal right I’ve been there before and it’s just a bit of a scraping job.  Now where’s my scraper?  I’m pretty sure it’s on the back seat of the car, I’ll just go get it.  Pull the handle, which breaks free of the ice surrounding it with a bit of effort pulling it outwards from the body of the car.  Unfortunately the door does not so easily comply, its encasement far more solid.  I pull on each of the four doors – no luck.  I pound the driver’s door with my bare fist a few times (gloves convienently located in my glove box back at the Hamilton airport) – nothing.  Okay, time to get serious and I lay into the door with my elbow and then my shoulder.  Nothing. 

Luckily a good samaritan was driving by and jumped out with ice scrapers in hand to help me chisel away at one of the doors.  I started at the seams of the door, scraping away at the painted areas to free them of the 1/4 inch of ice that is holding them together as one mass (making note that I did use my new platinum card to rent the car, so insurance will hopefully cover any damage I might cause by doing this).

We get the car open, I say good day to the samaritan and move on to phase two of operation get home from Ottawa.

This phase involves about 45 minutes alternating between good solid rage-suppressing beatings given to the windows of the car with my dollar-store ice scraper and runing inside to warm up my fingers before frostbite sets in.  At this point the wind is blowing ice and snow around the car at about 50 km/h which makes life all the more interesting.  I clear away enough of the front and back window to be legal and head to the airport.

With the gas guage down a full quarter tank I pulled into the Esso station to fill up, knowing full well that the likelihood of opening the gas cap is about as likely as getting hit by lightning while simultaneously collecting my million-dollar lotto winnings.  Give the gas cap a couple scrapes just to prove that I tried and then make mental note of “aw screw it”.

To the airport, and yes I didn’t fill the gas tank but bore a very clear “you’d better not mess with me” look on my face.  Glance at the car, glance at my face, and Budget Car Rental representative rings up my bill without any hassles.  Good Budget lady, here’s a cookie.  And so begins phase three.

I trudge across the roadway to the Air Canada departures level and check in for my flight.  It claims to be ontime, interesting and unbelievable at the same time.  Once again with my new Platinum card in tow I set myself on a mission to find the Air Canada lounge to settle in for the afternoon.  If you must be waylaid, you might as well do it in a leather chair with free wireless highspeed and unlimited beer on tap.  (This is the point where I am confident that regardless of the grief the fee on this card has caused my marriage, it’s all worth it right about… now).  And here I sit, comfortably anyways, in the lounge waiting to find out if I will get home today or not.  My blackberry buzzes to let me know that the flight has been canceled, and without issue I get connected to Air Canada and book on the 6:30pm flight.  Then they announce (which rarely happens in the lounge, us traveling snobs don’t like announcements) that several flights are being canceled.  In fact so many that they just decided to announce the two flights that weren’t canceled.  About an hour later they announce that indeed they were just kidding earlier when they said the Calgary and Vancouver flights were still on, really they are canceled too.  Everyone groans in unison, and immediately dials their phones to get in line to rebook their flights.  I hear plenty of people sitting there waiting to get connected, and the locals quickly begin to drop off and cancel their weekend plans. 

The lounge traffic is thinning now, reduced just to those of us unlucky enough to live outside of Ottawa.  We’re in it for the long haul, and will be making the universe pay as we sit here and wait and drink the universe’s free beer in retaliation for this lousy hand we’ve been dealt.

Oh and if anybody in Milton is reading this, Jodie needs a babysitter tonight since it looks like her husband is once again going to be sleeping in an airport.  -)

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