A change is as good as a rest, they say.

despite the orders of the operator, the laws

And for people from the boonies, this is

of physics prevent us frommoving further

indeed different.

back. We cling to the overhead straps,

Subway stops are announced as we

pressing against strangers. We realize that

bounce along a bustling Boston street on a

this experience was easier and more

hot and muggy day. This is a typical city –

enjoyable when we were teenagers. As the

there are lots of people and things to see

train jostles, we briefly invade the personal

and do. We have been trying to pack in as

space of the seated, who are oblivious to

much fun as we can during a brief sortie to

ourpresencebecause theirearsareplugged

New England, where you can hear several

Our neighbours to the south

orthey areenthralledbyhand-helddevices.

different languages spoken on any given

We pray our balance and underarm

There are no franchise banners in this

day. The “melting pot” contains distinct


deodorant will stand the test. Some words

community, where there are four

dialects from Maine, the Midwest,

remain strong, even though the economy

are uttered among the unplugged. Some

independent coffee shops. Certain coffee

Massachusetts, and of course, English and

has been better.

French is heard. We converse with French

connoisseurs believe that they have finally


Some road signs include kilometres to

visitors, agreeing that the displays at the

found cappuccino perfection in a tiny hole

We are here for some R&R, recreation

welcome the neighbours from the north.

Museum of Fine Arts were impressive.

in the wall that offers caffeine, crepes and

and research, and to consume lobster and


A student from Iowa asks for guidance.



the state features Old Orchard Beach, the

Every major city has a subway system, but

Half a block fromwhere you can take the

As usual, copious notes are being taken

mecca for the pale from the Great White


train that will whisk you to South Station in

so this trek can be used for the common


offer advice. Does shewant theRedLine or

Boston, you can peruse the shelves of an

good when we return to Eastern Ontario.

Thursday at The Union Oyster Bar in

the Green Line? Where does she want to


Perhaps findings from the land of the free

Boston, the large friendly bartender, who

go? There is an inbound and outbound.

titles you could order online.

and the home of the brave can be

couldeasilyplay linebacker for thePatriots,


In Montpelier, Vermont, a family-run

transportedacross the international border

waves everyone in, and explains the beer

the flow and we lose the French tourists

dineris theplacetogoonaSundaymorning.

and applied here, to help make our region

and menu lists.

and the Iowa student as we all go off in

A young lad has been trying to sell 50-50

an even better and happier place for

He is multilingual, speaking Bostonian,

different directions.

tickets ona chilly corner since 7 a.m. The fall


English, Spanish and some French.

Friday night at Doyle’s Café in the

chill still grips the state capital.Heenters the

So, one thingyounotice inNewEngland

Theplace and the fare are grand, but so is

Jamaica Plain district – beer and pizza and

diner at around 9 a.m. The woman at the

is that there are ample opportunities to

the competition in a city that teems with

a lot of loud Celtic music. At 10 p.m., the

counter says the hot chocolate is on the

spend your money. However, contrary to

tourists.Thatiswhy, eventhoughtheUnion

party is just starting. Just like home — a


popular belief, the landscape of America is


pipe band is playing, inside the bar, or bah,


not dominated by chains and franchises.

the employees go out of their way to make

Amazing Grace.

and it is not because the sun has started to

In many small towns, towns the size of

sure everyone is well served.


beam through the street-front window.

Hawkesbury, Alexandria and Casselman,


a glass as the kilt-clad group fills the


most of the businesses are independent,

stand, is the "World's Best Lobster Shack," a

building and the parking lot with the

with an edible garden. Where you would

operated by local families. It may sound

claimbacked by the constant line-ups. “We

familiar sounds of bagpipes and drums.

expect to find flowers, you come across

cliché, but there isacertaincharmtounique

take nothing for granted,” says the person

The pipe band eventually yields the

chard, tomatoes, and artichokes.

enterprises, which offer one-of-a-kind

who hands out the food.

spotlight to a band that plays JohnnyCash,

Throughout ourvisitwesawthatvisitors

products and services.

Fast forward to Boston. Many of us who

and traditional Irish ballads. The specialty

are offered a blend of history, raw nature at

Main streets of communities are dotted

have lived in a city know our former mass

here is – you guessed it – pizza.

its finest, seafood, warm hospitality and a

with icecreamparlors (or “palahs”as some

transit routes like the backof our hands. But

Alas, time flies when you are having

spattering of politics.

localscall them), bookstores, old-fashioned

we also remember thatmass transit is oneof

fun. Heading northward, we see that frost


barber shops, diners, snack shacks serving

the main reasons we saved our money to

will have zapped the gardens by now.

on their sleeves, and their cars.

lobsta’, and the obligatory arts, crafts, yoga

buy a car.

Approaching the Far East ofOntarioon the

A bumper sticker reads: “Too poor to

and healing centres.

The pace of a large urban centre can be

417, there are signs for the International

vote Republican.” That is countered with:

In Newton, a suburb north of Boston, a


Plowing Match, in both official languages.


family-owned ice cream parlor is always

Friday afternoon in the hometown of the

It is good to be home, in our little special

sticker yet?”


Bruins, the commuter train is packed, and

part of the world.

19 h à 21 h / 7 p. m. to 9 p. m.

CLARENCE CREEK 415, rue Lemay Street Mercredi 12 octobre 2011 Wednesday, October 12, 2011

PLANTAGENET 173, ancienne Route 17 173 Old Hwy 17 Jeudi 6 octobre 2011 Thursday, October 6, 2011

HAWKESBURY 411, rue Stanley Street Mardi 25 octobre 2011 Tuesday, October 25, 2011

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