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Canada Cruise

SATURDAY, 8/31/02: Bed at 11:35, TIRED and negatively anticipating trip!

SUNDAY, 9/1/02: Wake three times, pee at 3:51. 6:25 up to record dream and pee. Up at 8:35, TIRED. Sit around doing nothing, eat breakfast while watching the last program from August on TV, pack a few more items, wash dishes, put on the radio, take out the garbage to rain, which reinforces my decision to call for a car at noon for the ride to the pier. Finish this at 10:35AM, counting minutes now that it's below two hours. Have the Sunday Times to read to fill the rest of the time until the phone rings for the car. Clear Juno, call for $22 car, record phone message, clean bathroom sink and toilet to 11:15. Read Times to 11:35, taking the Magazine, Books, and Arts sections with me for reading on the ship. This STILL gives me too much time to BROOD! Final pee and small drink of water by 11:55. Totally ready at 11:59. Calls at 12: black Lincoln outside in one minute. Down at 12:02, and there's NO car there. Wait for a few minutes and notice a black T-license (livery) car down the block and go ask if he's got a Lincoln. Yes. Are you waiting for 167 Hicks? And he looks up in stupefaction and I look in back of me and see 176! Walk to my place and get bags and on at 12:08. Drizzling and 64 degrees. No traffic as we sweep over the bridge (I put on my seatbelt, as he has his on), and down FDR Drive to the south, sweeping around tip of island and through the Battery Park tunnel and out onto West Street for construction on the World Financial Center and a opaque green fence around Ground Zero, with buildings around still in the state of being repaired. Up in increasing rain and see sign for the Ship Terminal, having taken picture #1 of the Norwegian Sea from 42nd Street at 12:32PM. Into pier at 12:35 to a line for port-security check, looking at passport at 12:43, long line to door forming behind me, reaching external door at 12:40. BIG family is checking in ahead of me, but since there's no one behind them, I wait there. Wrong! Wait and wait for them to fuss in Spanish, while older man brags to couple waiting behind me that he got in earlier because he's a member of Latitudes club and they get priority service. I'm through at 12:55, with cabin 3148. They take my PHOTO at 12:59. People tend to be LOUD and COMPLAINING. Me, of course, I NEVER complain! Walk "to right" as directed, but numbers don't jibe, and of course 3148 is NOT on the right, but to the left down a central corridor, right in the middle of the ship, a room possibly even smaller than the one on the Aranui! I think I might unpack, but decide not to because of the possibility of an upgrade when Fred arrives. 1:18PM: Just about to leave the cabin when it dawns on me that I can't LOCK the door because Fred doesn't have his KEY yet! So I shut the door and start to type because there's nothing else to do. Take things out of A&K bag and prepare to go look around when it again occurs to me that I have to stay here until Fred ARRIVES. Don't know WHEN that will be, as it's now 1:36. Next "event" is a lifeboat drill at 3:30. Have to review excursions with Fred, too. Guess I'll start reading the Arts section. Fred [mistyped one character to the left and got DEWS!] knocks at 1:40! He's chipper. We have GROUP dinner tonight and maybe no upgrade because the ship is full. Elevator in the front goes ONLY to 8, so we have to walk up two flights to the soggy-floored poolside where he snags a table for two right next to the dessert table. Mediocre lunch buffet of cheeses, cold cuts (salami best), beef stew with good gravy but some of the beef chunks are VERY tough, and lackluster chicken thighs (which I notice on the labels AFTER I'd passed through the line and didn't know what they were). Then Fred sees people with fruit and goes to get cantaloupe and melon, which he says is good, so I go back and find they have hot chocolate, because juices are only served at breakfast. Brownies not bad, and I have two or three, but the dietetic-tasting oatmeal cookies and the too-hard chocolate cookies aren't worth much. Have iced tea, refuse all sorts of special drinks for $6, and turn back lots of uneaten food. It drizzles through the lunch, and I try the other side from where someone brought a frank, and got a burger with mustard, but later find that the larger selection in the rear dining room has sweet relish! Eat much too much until 2, when they announce the ship will be leaving after the Norwegian Empress does, so we watch her leave, slow and stately, uncovering a view north on the Hudson to the befogged George Washington Bridge, and lots of people don't even know where the World Trade Center was. We leave about 2:30 and sail slowly south, past all the buildings that I'd just passed in the cab coming to the ship that morning, and though it doesn't rain, it feels like it might at any moment, and the carpets are all very soggy. Down past the hole of WTC, with a reconstructed-looking Wintergarden, and out past the Statue of Liberty and a crowded harbor, past the forts under a tacky-undersided Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, and Fred had never noticed the two quarantine islands, and there's another with a lighthouse on it, and then we have to go the cabin to get our lifejackets (no, we did this BEFORE we left, at 3:30, so we didn't leave till after 4PM!). Then Fred checks his money into a safe-deposit box, we find that we probably won't get a room upgrade, so we're down to unpack and get ready for the travel-agent greeting-meeting at 7PM in Boomer's. Free bar (we get there a bit late) and order gin and tonics, refreshing, and then the hors d'oeuvres table opens and there are shrimp, cheese-filled salami cones, smoked herring, chicken wings, spring rolls, and brown puffs that prove to be deep-fried mushrooms. Go back for more shrimp when the second tray comes out, have a cranberry juice when the second gin and tonic is a bit much, but can't resist a pina colada. Chat with Barbara (who seems to know everything about the business) and Fred, then sit while Katrina introduces her husband Mel and I brood over full stomach before dinner. Then up to dining room at a table for 10 and Veecie sits next to me and Fred and she begin exchanging lewd remarks that I join in on, and it's a pleasant table, Fred complimenting me on my participation. Have the fruit cocktail, very small portion, and the lamb-kebab plate comes out filled, from which I have two tastes of dry ground lamb, but like Veecie's mashed carrot-yam with butter. A big ball of not-so-great raspberry sherbet at the end, not drinking more than a sip of the terrible Merlot that Katrina passes around, into which Fred dumps ice cubes. To bed stuffed at 10:30, Fred gambling, and can't sleep till after 12:10AM, "right after" which Fred says he returns to the cabin.

MONDAY, 9/2/02: Wake at 1:30 to pee, at 6AM with nice, erotic, kissing-guy-with-beard dream, and at 7:55 Fred's in shower. I shower and breakfast with 6, two from Brooklyn, and to LeBistro at 9AM and think to JOIN GTI until I find it'll cost me $495 unless I can get a discount, as Fred did, of $250, and Katrina says I should call the office and just ASK, for what can I lose. Fred gets credit for me, but I don't think it would be worth it. Take group photo, which we might get free. Rolls and orange juice and teas available, and the lecture is boring enough, Veecie making an annoyance by whining about her not following up on a customer's question and alienating her. Then to lunch of another fruit cocktail, an outrageous chocolate and cherimoya soup, and take photo #2 of going into the dock in Boston at 2:17PM. #3 of downtown at the dock at 2:20PM. On line for bus at 2:50, deciding it's better to go into town in the mist than to sit in the room and mope. Onto bus-ticket line at 2:58, and bus leaves at 3:08, we're the last on. Decide to go to the Aquarium and Fred joins me, we walk quickly there from bus stop, and buy $14.50 senior ticket to Aquarium and Imax Ocean Men at 6:15. Good penguins, tropical fish, and sea lion show at 4:20. Find the anaconda at last, see a few cute men, and get to show for GREAT undersea and helicopter photography, and leave at 6:55 while credits are running and get to bus at 7:02 to find they were just about to LEAVE! On last and get to boat at 7:16 for long line that moves fast to get us all aboard. Up to LeBistro for dinner, me in jacket and slippers, OK, at 8:05, and Fred's consomme is good, my mushroom soup in a bread-roll not that great, and then appetizers of snails and asparagus we share, and salads, my Caesar OK, and small filets with white truffles and thin-sliced foie gras with good Potatoes Anna, per Fred, and a fantastic chocolate fondue for dessert with bananas, strawberries, pineapple, grapes white and red, and profiteroles to soak up the good chocolate to SURFEIT. Also had a bottle of Beaujolais and Fred had an added glass, and watch Boston fall behind us as we sail. Down at 10:20 and can think of nothing better to do than watch Good Advice, terrible with shit-painting sequence worst, with Martin Sheen masquerading as an advice-column writer and in the end all turns out OK at 11:40 and I fall asleep at last.

TUESDAY, 9/3/02. Wake at 6 to pee and then at 8 to shower, doing Puns and Anagrams puzzle 8:20-8:48, and harder regular one till Fred wakes at 9:05AM and lies for a while, then showers and goes up to breakfast while I continue with puzzle. Then I'm up about 9:50 to look out on drizzly, misty Bar Harbor, breakfast over, and Fred's not around, so I come down to room to type this until 10:25, realizing we have to get tender tickets for the tour that starts at 12:45, the boat leaves at 3:30, and I might not have ANY food until THEN. Decide I'll try to find some kind of SNACK shop to have a quick brunch before leaving on the tour, and leave cabin at 10:25AM with jacket. Maid knocked on door about 9:15 and didn't come in, and room's STILL not made up at 10:30. Leave note for Fred and leave to 1) Deck 5 for tender ticket, and 2) Deck 9 for rolls and coffee for brunch, before 3) leaving on tender. Get to lounge for (unmarked) tender tickets, it seems no longer needed? Then up to Deck 9 for crowded Big Apple, and breakfast is still out, so I get cream cheese on roll with smoked salmon, pancake and syrup and ham slices, and grapefruit juice and pills. They CLOSE the breakfast line as I finish, and they immediately start setting up for lunch. An old Italian sits morosely at a table, looking inward, so he might have found a place that tolerates his being there indefinitely. Infinitely patient Black gives me a fork when I ask for it, but I have to retrieve my own knife, and then he tells me where the entry to the 9th floor aft elevator is, which takes me in a whiz from 9 to 3. Back to cabin to find Fred showering: "The trick just left and I'm cleaning up." And the room's not made up YET. Finish this at 11:03, maybe brush my teeth? Do so, watching the end of a DREADFUL Kung Pow on TV with a cute lead, then to Gangway on deck 1 for the tender line at 11:29, recording that the last tender leaves Bar Harbor at 3:30, and sit in the cold mist even one seat in on the bottom, waiting to leave at 11:42. #4, Bar Harbor at 11:47. Ashore at 11:50. #5 shore path and ship at 11:57, raining hard, getting all wet in the pants and fearing so for my wallet that I put it into my jacket pocket, and then put my camera around my neck because the A&K bag was getting too wet. NO one from the ship out here, and I go down to the shore on increasingly slippery rocks as the intertidal area is reached, but there's nothing much to see and nothing worth the risk of breaking a bone. Determined to go along the coast until I reach the wonderful Tudor house, finally taking #6 of it, and think the Shore Walk continues beyond, but that's actually the END of it as it goes up through the private backyards to Hancock Street, which has lots of private roads going off it before it hits Main Street, full of tacky shops and lots of tourists, some from Massachusetts, so not everyone is from the boat. Oh, took a picture of a lovely red-blooming, green-leaved bush as #7, confusing my numbers so that I fear I took TWO sevens, but when I check with the "find" on the AlphaSmart, I mislabeled five at the start of the trip this morning. Back through the park and pass the first bus, and the guide asks me if I'm going on the tour, and I say I'm looking for Fred, and he lets me go on and there's Fred in the sixth seat! Bus leaves immediately at 12:35, I think the third one off and one behind. Good guide, interesting stories, and off at Thunder Hole for video and snap #8, then #9 and #10 are shore shots from that same spot. Leave there at 1:49 and continue down to the gift shop at Jordan Lake, #11 panorama, and do NOT take a photo from the balcony of the very busy souvenir sales. Off at 3:20 and through the building, knowing Fred is BEHIND me, and onto catamaran at 3:28, and Fred doesn't get on that I can see, so I'm relieved when he gets OFF as we get back to the ship, to which I videoed to 3:40. Up to the room to think Fred is there because the TV is on, his umbrella is up to dry, and his iced tea is on the table, but he's not there! I start typing and he returns, saying he's going up for coffee, and I type while looking in the mirror for A Walk to Remember, a confusing teenage-growing-up movie where the lead in a play doesn't seem to realize his girlfriend is going to bring the place down with a song that goes on forever. Type to 4:45, noticing that The Importance of Being Earnest is on 6-8. Watch to the end, then look at the announcements until 6, when the movie starts and Fred enters and we agree it's awful: even Judi Dench isn't an improvement to the disaster of casting and directing. That's over about 7:35, short for better or worse, and we're up to no small tables at "the one that isn't the Seven Seas," [The Four Seasons] and go over to the Seven Seas to get seated immediately before the preparation bar, so the evening is punctuated with cutlery and dish-chimes, but he has the Oysters Rockefeller, which I don't even try, he shares my sturgeon and caviar, his duck consomme is intense, my mushroom melange is tasty in ceramic this evening, we have a bottle of $20 ($23 with tip, and I get my card imprinted so I can charge my after-dinner Galliano and lime for $6) champagne that is better cold than lukewarm, and the lobster tailS are pretty good with an extra vat of butter, and Fred has the nerve to have lobster tails AND beef Wellington, and finishes both! Then at 9:30 to the Casino to watch various games until we're into the Cabaret at 10:20 for the 10:30 show, awful except for the fairly good singer who had dinner with the Staff Captain and us last night, and even the guys aren't very good, except a few bumpy-ripplies when they bare their midriffs for the final number, the whole thing a salute to entertainment: movies, video, Broadway, music videos, and commercials. That's over at 11:20 and we return to the casino waiting for the photographing of the chocolate at 11:45, but there's too long a line for me; Fred stays, after giving me his jacket to take back (which I have to do, since he never tires of berating me from that time in China when I was reluctant to carry some small item for him), and I get to the cabin at 12 to turn the clocks ahead to 1AM, realizing with horror that I'd forgotten my evening pills, so will have to go to SLEEP with a freshly swallowed Wellbutrin, but I'm EXHAUSTED, so it shouldn't be difficult, and I type this until 1:20, prepared to sleep late, since we don't have to gather for the tour of Halifax tomorrow until 11AM---I think.

WEDNESDAY, 9/4/02: My socks stink under the bed even though I've only worn them one (admittedly VERY wet) day. Fred has three pillows piled on his bed, only one on mine. I get to bed at 1:20AM! Toss a bit and he comes in quite soon and then I'm to sleep with no insomnia from the pill so soon before sleep. 6AM pee. 8AM phone rings, then stops, then rings again with a wakeup call that Fred left. Agree to wake at 10. I'm up at 9:32 and go to john with laptop to type dream I had just before waking: I'm in some kind of camp like the Army, and have to shit, so go into a two-doored john and shut the door I enter, but leave the other door open, which has a view of one bed on the other side. Notice that the third toilet (there are no stalls) is collapsed and the wooden seat has been burnt, charred remnants in a semicircle only. I sit and strain to shit and a young female attendant comes in and says I should move to another stall because there's no water in the tank behind these two toilets. Look and there's NOT. Out into the open, crossing a field, and FEEL that there's something between my legs, and I've walked over some kind of weed that I've pulled out of the ground, so I disentangle it and throw it aside. See a small bit of woods and know I have to cross this before getting to the other john, and then I wake, vaguely having to shit. But as I sit the pressure isn't really there, so I just shower about 9:40AM. Shower till 9:55 and Fred gets out of bed saying he'll be ready in two or three minutes, he's not going to shower now, and I say that's fine. So I type this to 9:57 and start dressing. JAMMED breakfast upstairs 10:15-10:45, though we got there with a smallish line that only got bigger as it began to close at 10:30. More bacon and ham and this time French toast with syrup and some prunes and figs and two glasses of juice and pills. An "attack" helicopter buzzes so close to the ship that the Captain has to come on to say that they're practicing defensive measures, and "We're delighted to help them in any way we can." Up to deck 10 to watch us slowly make our way toward docking in Halifax, and then down to change from my flannel shirt to short sleeves because the day looks to be sunny and warm at last! However, by the time we dock it's clouded up again, though the rain holds off. Dead slow into harbor 12-1. Police boats swarm about again. #12 oil platform in Halifax, marked "Nassau" like our ship, at 12:45, with Matilda from Valletta (Malta)--sure! #13 boats and platform and other police ships at 12:52. Down to Fred and up to fruit and cake to 1:25, and to wait for long SLOW exit all through one door. We must be back by 6:30. At 1:40 I phone Fred in room and we're off at 1:45. Get through Pier 21 to find that our 2:30 HopOn-HopOff ticket really can't be used BEFORE 2:30, so I see a bus marked "Free" and then "Fred," so we've got to check it out, and the driver says he'll make the circle in half an hour, which is perfect. "Fred" turns out to be "Free Rides Everywhere Downtown," and Fred chats with Veecie and Regina while I sit on the step until people get off at the first stop and I get a seat next to a local student who chats with me until she gets off to shop before starting school tomorrow. Around in a simple circle until 2:20, and HopHop starts at 2:35. Off at the Public Gardens, look at wonderful dahlias and scentless roses and the Queen Victoria Pergola erected in 1887, go to the Male Washroom to pee, circle the lake, bother the ducks and see one goose, and out at 3:25 and wait for the bus, an empty one of which arrives at 3:35. #16 Halifax bridges from Citadel at 3:50, getting told that the Halifax Harbor is second in size only to Sydney Harbor. Then off at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic and see details of the Halifax Explosion in 1917 that killed 1666 people, and the Titanic in 1912 that killed 1513 people, 150 of whom are buried in Halifax, the closest port. Two enormous tragedies for one small town (though it's 975,000 now), and by enormous coincidence they play the "Titanic" theme at dinner this evening. Out of the museum last at 5:32 after videoing lots of the artifacts from the Titanic and onto Hop at 5:36 to the REST of the interesting tour of the town and back to Pier 21 at 6:02. Shop a bit and onto boat-line (relieved that this is the next-to-last time for THAT) at 6:11, JUST as it starts to rain. To the Four Seasons restaurant, which is said to open at 6:30, but a lot are seated before we are as we enter at 6:31, and have President's Dinner from a White House menu that makes it sound like the chef is HERE, but he's not: Cheese Crepes for me, salmon terrine for Fred, with crab soup, Jackie Kennedy's salad, and rack of lamb rare, followed by chocolate mousse, while I continue with consomme, not that great, and heart of palm and cucumber salad, and split tenderloin of beef with good potatoes and too-sweet carrots, ending with a heavenly hot fudge sundae. We're startled during dinner with a message "Code Alpha, deck 5, Code Alpha," which sounds ominous, and then toward the end of dinner the Captain comes on to say, "You may have noticed we've turned around and will be docking in Halifax. A passenger is very ill and has to be taken to a hospital immediately." Yes, there IS land outside, but I can't identify it with Halifax until I go out on deck after dinner at 8:05 and video the removal of what looks to be a young Spanish man about fifteen minutes later. Look at the stop-summaries until 9PM and Fred leaves for the Casino, and I switch to Domestic Disturbance with John Travolta as the father of a lying son who witnesses the villain killing someone, but who isn't believed, so they have to fight him and electrocute him and live happily ever after. It ends in time to see the good Rock and Roll Revue in the Cabaret from 10:30-11:10, and Fred goes to the Karaoke Bar and I'm down to the room at 11:15 to sit on the pot and try to shit, finally doing it, while reading through the Halifax booklets, out at 11:45 but it's really 10:45 after we set our clocks back an hour tonight. Type this until 12:20AM.

THURSDAY, 9/5/02: Turn on Dinner Rush with Danny Aiello as the owner of a restaurant who finally gets faith in his son to "not do what I did," and the place is filled with other plots with everyone eating, with John Whatsis [Corbett] from Northern Exposure and Sex in the City. Feel tired, almost sick of the motion of the boat, which I haven't been yet, but there are two days of nothing but sea ahead. At least no lines soon. Put this away at 12:21. Wake at 3 and 6:30 to pee, then at 8:02AM with a dream that I think about, then get out of bed at 8:16 to type in the bathroom: I'm home in a combination of my living room at 1221 Dietz and my living room at 167 Hicks, entertaining a small group of guests, many of whom are children, and I have a tiny Heathkit-like television set about 2 inches high and 12 inches wide that I want to show a special TV opera or play on, but for some reason I've taken it out from behind the regular-size TV magnifying tube, taking care not to disturb any of the delicate wires connecting it to the power source that I've now exposed by having it out of its case. I look at the TV listing something like the booklet on the ship and prove that it's on now, just after 4:30PM on a sunny afternoon in the summer, and push a single button like the cabin's TV remote to find the right channel, but then wonder why I don't put it back to be magnified by the tube, but can't remember how it went: was it on a small pedestal that I've moved and forgotten? Was it a fixed distance from the lens, like some kind of telescopic objective? But the kids don't seem to mind the tiny horizontal image, so there's a small sequence in the dream about moving from one seat to another, around a two-seat aisle arrangement, that I've forgotten the details of. Can't remember more of the dream, either, and I sit, debating whether to keep typing about my general feelings regarding this cruise in specific or my life at this time in general, tired from 8.5 hours of sleep but reluctant to go BACK to sleep, but not knowing when Fred got in last night, and realizing that it's now something like SEVEN-thirty, rather than 8:30, and it might be bright outside with the sunlight that shone for a few hours before we landed (and that heated up the breakfast room where we sat at a table next to the plainish Cabaret performers, too close to that horridly ugly, matted-haired dirty blond with the bug-eyes who reminds me facially of Shelley, but who is a male of unshaven face and bum-like, repulsive manners and outgoing ostentation with his equally repulsive wife with equally unwashed, uncombed, unkempt hair, and he keeps sipping from the small water bottle which MUST be filled with vodka or gin to make him so blearily loud with surrounding strangers or so unconsciously and unconscionably ugly in his every movement and gesture. What an ugly mood I am in, too! Decide to put this away and shower, since going back to bed would only heighten my overslept irritability. And try to remember that Fred has unaccountably switched his towels from the LEFT side to the RIGHT side in both his face and bath towels. Finish showering at 8:48 and change my watch to 7:48 and Fred's still deep asleep, so I guess I'll put on my bed-lamp---but he just queries, "Is it time to get up?" and I respond, "I think so." 7:40PM from notes: Cast was John Corbett and Kirk Acevedo from Oz. Up at 7:30 and watch Saving Grace, which is the Brenda Blythen movie about using marijuana, but then I decide I really WANT to have a good breakfast, so we leave before it's over at 9:10, waiting a short time for a table for two, and I wait a long time for the fruit plate, and then when I get my "omelette" (I really DID want bacon and bleu cheese and green onions!) it was only the Portuguese frittata, dry and precooked and filled with spinach and tomatoes. Fred loved his over-easy eggs, but I had to be satisfied with two cups of hot chocolate. Finished at 10AM, to the foggy deck for ten minutes, then to the Butterfly Card Shop to do the daily puzzle and trivia (no contest, since the answers are all on the back) and read about Aztecs till the library closes at 11:37, and I'm down to the room to watch Fred-recommended My Big Fat Greek Wedding, which is just AWFUL, with stereotyped movie-only behavior from the frenetic Greek family and the too-bland non-Greek family. Leave at 1:30 when it's over, up to Seven Seas for lunch, again getting a table quickly for two, even though we had to give them our room number, but we got a table for four for ourselves. We both had the prosciutto and melon appetizer with my beef broth and his New England clam chowder with a salad, and a god-awful "lite" creme brulee, but good rare London broil, with a very peppery gravy, and my Cuban sandwich is good, but I can't eat but 60% of it and leave most of the dry waffle-fried potatoes, all of the coleslaw, saving room for the delicious chocolate sundae for MY dessert. Fred goes somewhere and I'm down to the room to finally finish the ship's New York Times Digest puzzle with the clue-scheme centered around + for CROSS! And then I get out the unsolved Sunday Times puzzle and work and work and work on it until 6:05 when Fred comes down to say that there's a SUNSET. I don't believe him, but put on channel 7 and there's the SUN! Put on my jacket and shoes and leave and then knock on the door for my key and get up to the Promenade Deck to find the sign saying it's closed, though the door's not locked, but go out and it's COLD and windy and WET from the bow-spray. Up to 10 on the elevator and check in at LeBistro and they have a cancellation for two for 6:30, but when I phone Fred he's just eaten cheese and crackers and isn't interested. I go outside a bit behind a stanchion, but the sun is still above the clouds and the spray is hitting the TOP DECK IN THE BACK, to show how strong it is. I decide to try to see how much I can see from inside, and get up to 9 to find the ping-pong room and put in earplugs to cancel out the screaming Spanish kids monopolizing the two tables and singing "Hey Jude" endlessly. Look as the sun sinks into the clouds, and briefly appears just above the lowest ones, but then it sinks farther without showing itself or any interesting beams---though I watch an attendant come out to the lifeboat below me whose cover is flapping in the strong wind, and he actually goes inside and makes it WORSE: the front is now unconnected, so it BILLOWS in the wind, making ready to take off. I take some video of that and the spray from the bow, but of course I don't manage to catch the really big ones. Watch and tell one of the attendants about the loose cover, and then see three people come out on the bridge and look at it, but no one bothers to do anything about it. It's getting dark and I'm not seeing anything new, so I'm down to the cabin to see the end of a dreadful Showtime with Robert De Niro and Eddie Murphy, and I seem to remember that Someone Like You, starting at 8PM, is good. Oh, forgot that when I went to the elevator on 9, a VERY drunk seaman, as I guessed from his youth, beard, and slovenly clothes, herded by two uniformed waiters, weaved down the hall and they corralled him into the elevator, where he beamed at them and at me in his drunken stupor, and they took him off to heaven knows where on Deck 4. After the movie I finish the magazine and throw it away, since Fred doesn't want to keep any of the Sopranos pictures or sexy guys, and I start typing this until 8PM when I see what the movie is like. Someone Like You happens to star Greg Kinnear and---ohmigod, I forget HIS name? Doug Kingman? ---Hugh Jackman!! who shows his chest just before we shut it off at 8:45 and go up to LeBistro to be seated inside (where I piss Fred off by grabbing the FLOOR-facing chair, leaving HIM to face the wall, as he's so often done to ME), and we BOTH have the asparagus, onion soup, tuna (enormous portion) salad, and he the foie gras Filet Rossini and I the Bearnaise Filet, very good, but smaller than his rawish tower. Boat is rocking, but not even as much as my ROOM is rocking as I type THIS. Finish at 10:30 and get to the Stardust Lounge for the Liar's Club, and we're on team 8, which wins the prizes (leatherette bookmarks) for the most wins, and they give me full credit for forcing "half-assed" for "hemipyginic" and one guy tells the marvelous joke of the woman going to Dr. Henderson to enlarge her breasts, so she has to practice "Eeny meeny miny moe, this will help my chest to grow" as she flaps her elbows in and out, doing it in the back of the bus at exactly 4 o'clock, attracting the attention of the guy who says, "You must have seen Dr. Henderson," and she asks what he went for and he bobs up and down, bending his knees, saying, "Hickory dickory dock...." This is over at 11:35 and I get to the room to urinate and to spray his lemon spray into my shoes, and it seems to WORK. Type this to 11:54PM, ready for bed. Shit a bit and get to bed at 12:05AM.

FRIDAY, 9/6/02: 5:40AM: Dream: I'm in the ruins of some ancient Middle Eastern town, looking at "bowties" of ceramics from shattered walls, not yet on sale, but clearly worth something, since lavish art/coffee-table books have been illustrated with just such remaining fragments. There are no mosaics, since these are probably already in museums worldwide. Some interactions with locals have since been forgotten in the few minutes between waking from the dream and taking my laptop into the john to pee, the second time tonight: first at 1:20AM. Wakeup call at 7:30, and up directly for breakfast from 7:40-8:20, my usual grapefruit juice, sliced fruit, and this time I GOT my omelet of ham (with bacon on the side), blue cheese (actually not very good: it makes the omelet too dense), and green onions. Again two cups of hot chocolate and I anger Fred, I'm sure, with my accusation that he usually takes the better of the two seats, but of course he excuses himself by saying that his eyes are very sensitive (as if mine weren't) and so he couldn't possibly sit facing the sun. I could sense his displeasure, but maybe that's all to the good for our relationship. To the deck to see the passing St. Lawrence banks, and the white shape on the south bank turned out to be smoke when I went down to the cabin to get my double shirts for the cold, and my binoculars and video camera. Then down at 9:30 to Oscar's for trivia and I start alone and gain an intelligent man and woman and we three win the 21 questions with 19 correct, getting another bookmark and a Norwegian Line canvas tote bag. Back to the room at 10:10 to put things away, and then back to the deck to look at the smoke we leave behind, then pick up the trivia and puzzle of the day and down to the room to finish them quickly and start reading the New York Times Magazine until noon, when I start watching Zoolander, written and produced and directed by and starring Ben Stiller, who starts with a few quick stills of his fabulous body, but then he overdoes his eyes, particularly in blackface, and the kick is the number of REAL models, Mila Jovovich as the villainess, the black man has a FANTASTIC face, and David Bowie and others. Still, not a very good movie. But it's over by 1:40 and I dash up to The Big Apple for a pork chop, two pieces of fish with tartar sauce, but they don't replace the roast chicken, so I fill up with fruit, iced tea, and a roll. Watch the shoreline pass, and then get to the front of the ship at 2:10 to watch us approach the Saguenay, and at 2:30 we enter just as Yanni starts talking over the PA and points out the surfacing minke whale I'd seen a moment before. Take #17 at 2:35 of the red-roofed Hotel Tadussac, and then stand right at the front watching the first part of the cruise up the river, but it's not very interesting, and after an hour or so I get a seat in the second row, then someone from the first row leaves and I take that in time to get protection against the rain. Get up to the end about 4:45, getting dark, and video and photo the Virgin (taking #18 and #19 in the increasing gloom), 25 feet high, carved from three pieces of wood that floated when the boat carrying it sank, and the carver lived not only 10 years after his prayers, but 19, bringing his family to adulthood. Record the "Ave Maria" that the ship always plays there, and then they announce that Yanni is giving a slide-lecture in the Cabaret, and I go down to ask her if I can use my videotape, and she says yes. Her talk is interesting and I record some, and then it's over at 6:05 and I'm back to the room to find a note from Fred saying that he wants to eat at 8:30, and that the sky has cleared and the evening is beautiful. Incredible! I start watching The Affair of the Necklace and aside from Hilary Swank, it has Jonathan [Pryce]---the guy from---that play [Miss Saigon], and Christopher Walken as Cagliostro, with a terrible accent. A quick look at Channel 7 seems to verify we're still way up the Saguenay, so I continue to watch Necklace as I finish typing this at 7:05, hoping the movie will be over soon enough for me to enjoy some of the sunset. But then at 7:10 decide to go up to see where we are, and find that we've JUST left the Saguenay, so I video not much of anything except the pretty town at the western bank of the mouth of the river, and back down at 7:20 to continue watching Necklace. Fred comes in at 8:05 and says we can go to dinner in five minutes. Wash face and we get to Seven Seas and I have smoked quenelles while Fred has "boring" paté, he has a salad while I have my dessert-like chilled cream of apple and cinnamon soup and THEN get the salad. Fred and I both have steak and one skewer of shrimp, mine with both sauces, which don't taste very good when mixed. We get a quick cheese tray when they're about to close, and we both have chocolate sauce over ice cream, I pecan and he vanilla. Then to the Cabaret for the 9:30 Retro-Active show, and the speed and glitziness is actually habit-forming! The two smaller guys show up with opened shirts for a neat touch. They end with lots of the help coming onstage to a standing ovation from the audience. Back to room at 10:15 to find Fred not there, so I laboriously brush teeth while watching CNN (which hadn't been on for a while), and again lemon-spray my shoes and this time my socks. Forgot that I noted that Jonathan was PRYCE, and the movie ends at 7:54, just as Fred came in. Just kill a tiny blood-filled fly on my trousers! Finish typing now at 11:12PM---listening to news for grandfather of grandchildren who have been convicted of killing their father, including a homosexual liaison. Try to go to bed 11:35, but Fred's turned on CNN and wants to talk, so I get to bed about 11:45, and he turns off TV soon after.

SATURDAY, 9/7/02: 4:15AM: Up to pee with slight memory of a dream that has people lying on small beds according to the days of the week: Wednesday and Thursday reported on Thursday, so Friday and Saturday on Friday (but Sunday has to sleep, too, and does so temporarily in a slot), then Sunday and Monday on Monday (so they can take their proper slots). Or something like that, anything to record a forgotten dream. 11:44PM: 6:30 pee and get wakeup call at 7:30 and shower, noting that we have to be back by 5:30PM. Breakfast fast and to lounge and get called out at 8:05. To "first" bus, in the fourth seat, and Fred's not THERE! LOOK and Fred's in SECOND bus, which I get on at 8:15, since they let HIM and couple in front of him in FIRST. Leave at 8:30. #20 ship under Frontenac from Ile D'Orleans. 9:09 to Sugar Shack, get good taffy from cooling syrup in ice chest on popsicle stick, and look at shops and video decent paintings in dining room and #21 first fall colors at 9:35. #22 ducks and view from Ile over St. Lawrence north. #23 more color at 9:37. #24 Sugar Shack. Leave 9:47. #25 Manoir Montmorency at 10:11. #26 raft model at 10:23 after tea and pastry upstairs, and then I dash out to see the FALLS, which should have been the purpose of the stop! #28 other side of falls for stairs. #29 falls at 10:26. Video to 10:31, #30 and #31 views from across bridge at 10:37. Leave bridge at 10:42, having taken pictures of Fred below on pergola side. We're on bus at 10:49, which leaves 10:51. Stop at 11:19 at Lake Beauport. #32 flowers at Manoir St. Castin. #33 view across lake at 11:20. #34 the Manoir from below. #35 across lake at 11:38. Leave at 11:47, almost on time. Back to ship at 12:10 and dash to lunch in Seven Seas of Cream of Papaya soup, which tastes suspiciously like the Cream of Apple yesterday, and the fruit and cottage cheese and banana bread entree, and some of Fred's barbecued chicken thighs, and an ice cream sundae for dessert. Long time between courses, since they seem to be serving us when they serve other tables their same courses. Leave lunch at 1:22 and to room while Fred does lots of things to 1:39. Start Roll #2: #1 Notre Dame des Victoires at 1:59 in Petit Champlain Quarter. #2 Looking up Rue Sous-le-Fort. #3 and #4 of Chateau Frontenac at 2:06 from Dufferin Terrace. To funicular line at 2:08 and up at 2:15, me paying $3 Canadian for Fred and me, and he gives me $1 US for his $1.50. We walk in the hot sun (I changed from flannel to short-sleeved shirt and should have brought hat) along terrace and he wants to climb past the Citadel to get a top view of the Chateau, so we walk up and up and across and down and up, looking over edge, and up to Citadel to find tour busses and Elizabeth, who tells us we can walk along edge of Citadel, which we do, looking at various cuties along way, VERY hot in afternoon sun which may have gone to 85 degrees. Around to St. Denis and down hill after taking #7 chateau at 2:33, and #8 at 3:16, just before going into the lobby and wandering hallway and going to Terrace for two glasses of wine for which I leave $20 Canadian, which means that Fred owes me $6.66 US, to be squared later, since he signed for all the wines with his credit card. I "borrow" (and later steal) a Frontenac card for the john, and have a needed pee. Out just before 5 and to edge and down stairs, since Fred doesn't want to do the Funicular, so we're down, even with detour---oh, we'd seen the Parc de Moulin du Cavalier, and the Anglican Cathedral, plain, and the Catholic Cathedral with its gold altar while it was performing a wedding (as we'd photoed below with the bride and groom in a carriage), and down to the ship at 5:25, no one ahead of us, and I'm up to the Promenade deck to take #10 of the Chateau from ship at 5:27. On deck watching the sunset, with lots of speedboats, three Jet Skis jumping the waves, a motorboat with two older men, another larger boat with ONE single man, and sail into the sunset with two bridges (one old, one young) next to each other, and get down in the growing dark at 7:15 to tell Fred I really don't want to eat in LeBistro, and he says OK and I call and cancel and we go up to the Seven Seas for our last dinner, people being sent over from the crowded Four Seasons, and we have his tuna tartare and my three-berry compote, we both have the yellow split pea soup with smoked ham hocks and scallions, and then with his salad I have the fettuccini with mushrooms, filling, and then he has the lamb and me the pork chop, not that great, but the champagne (Bouvet) for $22 is pretty good. Finish at 9:20 and go down to do most of the packing, then up to the Cabaret for the comic Tony Darrow, not that great, and then Elvy Rose, who turns out to LOOK like Chiquita from a few nights ago, and Jennifer is the pretty one we saw at the dinner the first night, and Elvy is lewd and limber and rather funny, but more personality than talent. Then Christopher someone the magician comes out with his patter and does stuff, and the other entertainments were better. Leave 11:05 and back to room to finish packing blue bag with purple tag, which I finish at 11:38 and it goes out into the hall at midnight, and I take my Comment Card up to the Fourth Floor box so that I'm trying for the drawing (of which I actually don't remember hearing the winner's name), and put everything in one stack that I'll take tomorrow, and Fred gets into bed and starts watching TV at midnight, a rebroadcast of Kevin's departure information.

SUNDAY, 9/8/02: He keeps turning it louder and finally asks me how long I'm going to be typing at 12:05. I say five more minutes, but he says he can't hear over my typing, so I go into the bathroom and finish typing to 12:10, ready for a final shit and face-wash and bed. Hear the performers' names and transcribe them by 12:12AM. Shit and wash face to 12:25 and Jurassic Park 3 is on TV and I debate watching it, even though it would be over like 1:40AM, but Fred says, "I can't sleep with the TV on." "What about your earplugs?" "They don't shut out everything; they're not as good as yours." And he reaches for the remote as if I had no part of the decision. TV off at 12:27. So about 12:29 I turn off the light. Wake after dream at 2:30 about guys getting to the point of cumming, and wake VERY hard and pee and get back to sleep. 4:22AM: Wake about 2:30AM with dream about a prescription whose second part cancels the third part, but it must be there to potentiate the first part, and the formulas are displayed so that the left half of one line should be normal while the right half should be blank, and then the next line somehow reverses that effect so that the prescription works either way it's used. I didn't understand it in the dream and I don't understand it now. Back to sleep after a bit and wake at 4:20 with a second dream: I'm sitting watching TV with Don M. and he reaches over and takes my hand and puts it in his crotch so that I can feel his erection. As I move it back and forth, it becomes smaller and more wooden, like I'm handling a large wooden paperclip that's solid on the edges and hollow in the middle. He reaches for me, and then climbs over me and stares me in the eyes as he starts to kiss me. I look back and his hair is messed up on his head (though it's clearly HIS hair rather than a wig), and his eyes become quizzical when he thinks I'm not as turned on as he thought I was, and as he gets more analytical I close my eyes so that he won't see the calculations going on behind them. Wake with an erection and put on the light and transcribe this, hoping that doing so will alleviate the indecision I felt when I didn't turn on the light to transcribe the FIRST dream, and I now feel that I must piss at 4:28AM. Wake again at 5:20 and can't get back to sleep, even though I conjure up the mympths THREE times, a modern record, and toss and shit a decent shit at 7AM and lie until the phone rings at 7:23AM, when Fred gets up almost immediately to answer, and goes into the john, and gets the bill from the doorknob, and I type this while watching the SAME end of Snow Dogs on TV and take the TV schedule and my T-shirt out of the wastebasket after finding it under my bed last night (which Fred turned up his nose at because of the underarm stains), and finish this at 7:39AM and go in to shower. 9:36AM: Check bill and up to breakfast in Four Seasons: juice, fruit, two over easy, THREE cups of good hot chocolate served by "Jerzy, like in New Jersey." Captain's address (we've NEVER seen him) at 8:15: "Fairly warm even in the early morning." Breakfast to 8:50 and up to Deck 10 to look over Montreal: geodesic dome prominent and then lots of amusement rides (at least three coasters and a Ferris wheel) on a northward island. Fred down for camera. By 9:01 we were already down to the THIRD tag-color. Fred's color is about fifth or sixth and mine's seventh or eighth. Back to room at 9:12 and Jurassic Park 3 is on with no big-deal climax (except birds are flying off to nest somewhere) until 9:30. Fred says goodbye and leaves at 9:21, saying that I should pick up tapes Tuesday evening or Wednesday, since he leaves on Thursday for Italy. Also gives me $6.67 at breakfast for drink at Frontenac and reminds me of the $20 in cover charges for LeBistro in addition to the wine charges on his visa. Couldn't think of Sam Neill's or William H. Macy's name from Jurassic 3. I take a final shit, wrap up soap in the damenbinden envelope, and get everything into A&K bag and finish typing this at 9:40, music from news-TV playing in background, and I guess I'll go upstairs, since we never hear announcements back down here. Check a last time to make sure we've left nothing. Put TV off after a final surf, everything away but this, and plan to put all lights off now at 9:43AM. Leaving ship at last! 9:50AM: Lug heavy A&K bag up to Deck 4 and find we're only up to yellow, and gold is quickly called, but there are at least five to go before the final purple. Settle down in the Cabaret chair with about a dozen other people and pull this out to finish at 9:51. Time for a final evaluation? I'm just not BUILT for cruises: not interested in the Casino, the spa, or a dozen meals a day. Standing on the deck last night watching Quebec City diminish in the distance, the top of Chateau Frontenac peeking above western hills, watching the sun set and the boats sail past and feel the lingering warmth of the day on my short sleeves, I realize how much the bad weather deprived this trip of the ordinary joys of cruising: having a dessert on the deck while watching ANYTHING pass, seeing things come and go, unhampered by fog or rain or wind or cold weather. Dining with Fred becomes somewhat of a chore at last, because he seems to want something new and interesting to talk about all the time, we ending up last night talking about what turns us on in porno: he, anything to do with the ass, penetrating or tasting, and I sum up my interests in two words: "Cocks cumming." I go on to say that if someone's sucking or being fucked by it, I'm not interested and therefore edit out much of Bjorn's anality and concentrate on his untouched cums. He asks about balls, and I say that, drawn up by the cremaster, which term he doesn't know, the tight balls before an orgasm can be a real turnon. I explain that John and Dennis, and Bill and Tony, liked that, too, so I found willing partners. But it's perfectly clear, with his taste for anality and "chunks" and crew cuts or shaven heads (and, he doesn't say but I've noticed, a touch of stupidity or animality about the body or face), and that's just not me, so any thought that I could in any way replace his 30-year relationship with the black Sherman is out of the question, though we AGAIN talk about places we'd like to see: he loved Zermatt and I wouldn't mind going back to see the Matterhorn, and he'd love to travel through Germany, seeming to agree with me on seeing Dresden and Leipzig, but agreeing with Ken in that his total interest in three-star feasts in France would be limited to only THREE in a 21-day period, though he much likes the one-star "tryers" and the "red-dot, worth the detour for value" indications, and agrees that the cheapest hotels are many times the best. He agrees that he likes an automatic shift to drive, but that what he wants to see is usually widely separated from the NEXT place he wants to see. He DOES disappoint earlier by saying that the Netherlands has had a terrible experience with legalized grass; he said there were 13 points, of which he could remember only a few: increased crime, the attraction of a very much lower class of "tourist" coming only for the drugs and little else, lots of petty thefts, and lots of ugliness in general. Pity, since I would have hoped that it would give a GOOD example (as Britain did with the legalization of prescribed heroin) of legalization. Elizabeth was VERY down (as well as on men in general) on legalization, describing it "even-handedly" but adding that it hasn't been passed yet and not many would want it passed, and when she asked how many on the bus would like it, only two dared raise their hands, and Fred later did and when he said he had been a schoolteacher she questioned his moral leadership of children. Hope there aren't many like her, though I'm personally convinced that the United Stats would bring so much pressure on "their good neighbor to the north" that the legislature would be almost blackmailed into not passing it. To change the subject, can't imagine staying more than one night in Montreal, since I'm counting the hours to home (less than 36 now, and only three meals in Montreal and lunch on the train before getting into Manhattan about 7:30 tomorrow night [which sounds SO much better than "Monday night"]). Hope to find that the amusement park WOULD be open this early in September, even though the next day would be a school day for children. Debate going through the files to check spelling, but it would be much easier to do it on my own computer, so I put aside the idea, wondering if my clicking away is bothering the couple sitting a few seats away from me, only 11 of us by actual count now that the next color has been called. I suspect Fred's yellow might be next, which means he just might get to the airport at 10:30 (it's 10:07 now), in time for the two-hour recommendation for an international flight that leaves, as his does, at 12:30. His appointment is as bartender at some party by the G.s that they sent out dozens of invitations to, but he has no idea how many RSVPed. He DID say he was looking forward to a lot of free drinking in his position as an unpaid bartender. I guess it's some kind of benefit for some Fort Greene organization. People cleaning up: showers of water came down from the deck above while we were in the dining room, rather effectively washing the salt streaks off the windows that had been there from the start. Our room was cursorily made up with bathroom supplies, nothing in the shower, wastebasket emptied, so I was glad to have retrieved my T-shirt ("Ugh" said Fred, "Look at those awful stains in the armpits; how disgusting!"---typical of his overreactions, and I wouldn't be surprised if he KNEW it was mine and was "cluing me in" that he thought some of my habits were disgusting). 10:11AM call for brown luggage tags. Have to have customs form and proof of citizenship in hand. 10:14AM purple baggage tags called for (which I completely forgot was MY color), with luggage waiting for them in the terminal. Let's hope there's a good supply of taxis for the independent travelers at the end, which the ship doesn't care about because they're the last off and they can prepare for the boarding of the new cruise this afternoon, for which the TV channel 1 is prepared  with the entertainments for this afternoon. The last waiting person aside from me leaves the Cabaret lounge. Search for something more to talk about, wondering how close to the end of file 5 I'm at. Could read: yes, let's get rid of the Sunday Times Arts section, now at 10:16AM. Wow-wow-wow, fast-fast-fast: now 11:39AM: at 10:20AM hear "ALL guests depart!" I must have misheard the purple-tag call. To custom shed at 10:24. Go through, rather ignoring the question, "Have all your luggage?" because I thought the luggage was OUTSIDE. But go outside and there IS no more luggage. Ask one guy who shows me to another guy who gives me to a third guy who takes me BACK inside, where I look in a few places and see NO free luggage. Begin to worry SLIGHTLY, when suddenly there's a little pile of four or five bags which someone just brought from somewhere, and there's my bag with a straw hat atop it. Take bag and get guided out at 10:35. Pick up brochures and information and there's a LONG taxi line, and find there's an even longer walk to the Metro. Pee and convert to Canadian change and decide to walk OUT to try for taxi on way IN, at 10:45. LEAVE 10:50 on walk, into cab at 10:54. Direct cab to YMCA and when I get out of cab see a black object on the street fallen from my lap---and it's my WALLET!!! Pick it up and I’m into the strangely empty YMCA to be told they stopped renting rooms a year and a half ago, but the YWCA will rent to men. He dials for me and she says she has a private room, but check-in is only at 2PM. I pause, and she suggests I can leave my bags there. Short walk, and get a semi-private bath for $47, with a senior discount, which comes out to ABOUT $30, and I think it must be near the central train station. I glance to the side of the desk and see a Gray Line brochure with a 1.5 hour city tour for about $20 that leaves at noon. She calls and takes a $4 deposit, taking coins to give me a larger coin, and she says, "It'll pick you up in ten minutes!" I go to a comfortable chair and tear blue bag apart to find my sunhat, and put most of the stuff back into the bag and STRAIN to close it JUST as a guy from Gray Line comes in to ask for me! Put the bag into a little closet, having already paid for the room with Visa, and get out to the van at 11:30. He keeps telling me it's a three-hour tour, which sounds fine, but takes me to the Centre Infotouriste where I pay the rest of the tariff with a senior discount and get on the second bus FOR the 1.5 hour tour, and at 11:45 the driver puts on the air conditioning, which is a nice touch, and I was first on the bus with a front-row seat for the tour. Lots of people from the boat get on, too, lots of foreign accents. Catch up with this at 11:50 and put it away to look at brochure. Driver and boat-goer-for-next-cruise talk about LOW cruise prices around 9/11. 32 degrees C = 90 degrees F! Leave 12:01 on bus tour. 55-story is highest building. 3.5 million people are 65% French. #12 Place des Art at 12:11, all on St. Catherine. #13 Jacques Cartier Square at 12:23. Driver TALKS CONSTANTLY. Five-minute stop 12:24-12:31. #14 City Hall LIKE Paris, but not much, at 12:27. #15 top of Square at 12:28. Restaurant Vieux Port is good. Stop at overlook 1:07-1:13 and #16 panorama. #17 geodesic dome. #18 monument at 1:17. OFF bus at 1:29, incredible tour. Onto tour-return shuttle at 1:36, to Y at 1:41. #19 of my room at 1:51. Study STUFF to 2:16! Leave 2:26, to DEEP Lucien L'Allier station, buying two tickets for $4.50, no senior discount because I have no official Canadian card. On train 2:35, change at 2:40 at IQAM, long walk to Longueil at 2:48, into LaRonde with Visa at 3:05, onto Monster line at 3:11, on LONG ride 3:40-3:42. Eat "lunch" of four chicken cutlets, French fries, Sprite, and coleslaw for $5.64US at what WAS Cocorico, to 4:10. Onto Volcanozor line at 4:17, HOT in sun. Inside at 4:40, to seats, and out at 4:52, old stuff. To Cobra line at 4:54 and out at 5-5:01, not popular now. Onto Vampire line at 5:05. This is "The Big Deal" this year, so it's a long line, but room for much longer wait. Cobra was hard on the SIDE of my head, what's Vampire to be? Canada Express train has BLANK car behind Yukon, NO Nunuvut. Another minute for ride 5:55-5:56, smoother, NO head-side press. Off Ferris wheel at 6:25 and back for orange drink I'd bought, 32 ounces for like $2, and decide to ride again since I can do it alone and video all around. #21 roller coaster at 6:26. Second time alone to 6:37, tired. Sit at entrance and try to build up enthusiasm for more, but tired enough to leave at 7:01, sunset time, getting a seat on the free shuttle bus, just miss Metro at 7:14, and I AM tired! Train at 7:23, wait in UQAM at 7:30, #22 BOD in subway ad at 7:44 at L'Allier underground. To room at 7:56 and drink LOTS of water, pee, undress, and LIE DOWN in fatigue. Up at 8:53 for pills so I can sleep after them, and at 9:27 start reading New Yorker till 10:22, when I decide I just DON'T feel like going out to dinner, not really tired, so I go to bed at 10:25.

MONDAY, 9/9/02: Great morning, going from my note number 5: get up once to pee (recording dreams noted earlier) and lie around a lot and get up at 6:57AM, where this corresponds with other stuff. Forgot to mention the Inuit Art Gallery that we looked at when I found that the Museum wanted $6 for entry, and we really enjoyed sitting in the lounge at the Chateau Frontenac to rest from that day. Leave Y at 7:20AM and up to street from Central Station at 7:43, having bought a ticker and scoped out breakfast at $3.39, 29 cents more than I have in Canadian. Back at the Y, I smell breakfast, and the little cafe offers a muffin, scrambled egg, two slices of American cheese, and tea for $3.05, including tax, which leaves me with one Canadian nickel. To room at 8:11 with daily paper. #23 view from Y window at 8:30. Finish packing at 8:50, wash face, and---SHIT, remember that I'd PACKED my train ticket! Find it quickly. 9:01 leave room. #24 Cathedral "St. Peter's at 1/3 size" at 9:12. To gate 15 boarding LINE at 9:20 for 9:30 boarding. Onto train 9:43. 9:44AM: Now sitting at seat 31, window on right in middle of car far from the toilet smells or inter-car noises. Just announced: "Going to need all seats." Ugh. Leaves---lights OUT at 9:47 and not on till 9:51, for no particular reason except "Until we get out of the tunnel." RIDICULOUS! Leaves 9:51AM. Of COURSE the window I chose is CRAZED right at look-level! #25 leaving Montreal at 9:54. First stop LISTED as Plattsburg but we stop at St. Lambert at 10:04! Cross (totally open) border at 11:16, and they turn the air conditioning off. Farming activity? Can-a-da corn(as signs say), mostly, and lots of brown patches of what may be dead bean plants. CREEP toward customs at 11:22 and LOTS of questions. 11:40: stopped for customs. Guy sitting next to me and his brother ahead, "Up to look at a car to buy," were told to take their bag to dining car. Felt good to be on the train despite all the delays, and now at 12:08PM we're STILL not started from Customs! 6:13PM: Start out at 12:09, but stop (as so MANY times) blocking a road and its traffic. Start off again at 12:11. "Wear shoes," comes as an announcement, and I'd thought I wouldn't! ONE fatty from ship on train, and he and his callipygous wife and not-yet-blossomed children eat across from me in the diner. Plattsburg 12:41-12:45. "Delays due to track-work" and "If temperature goes over 90 degrees, we can't go over 40 mph." I later calculate that 90 degrees is just above 32.2 degrees Centigrade. At 2:10 finish a cheeseburger (which I took off its plate when the whole thing ended on the floor, and I have no idea whether it STAYED on the plate or only landed there on a REBOUND from the floor). That and a beer and a brownie (actually quite good, with chunks of nuts and chocolate in a rich dough) were $9.50US. Into Westport at 2:20. Whitehall, NY, is birthplace of the US Navy? At 4:09, and it has on display outside the USS Ticonderoga hull from 1812. Fort Edward at 4:41, but we don't really stop there. At 4:43 a woman says, "We're an hour and ten minutes late." Saratoga Springs SHOULD be at 3:45, and we're there at 5:05. At 5:27 they announce an engine change at Albany. Stop in Albany(?) at 5:45, but it's not, since at 5:55 they announce we'll be in Albany in 15 minutes for 15 minutes stop while they change engines and crew, which means the cafe is closed again. At 6:03 we pass a sign saying NY is 146 miles! Easily 3 hours at 50 mph and a number of stops yet. CREEP to Albany and stop in sun at 6:12. I'm rather in danger of running out of cards if the trip lasts a lot longer, as it promises to do. Had a long nice sit in the diner, which was overcooled, as compared to my seat on the right which was so hot my throat kept being wet with sweat and even fanning myself didn't help enough, so I went back and ordered another beer, sitting in the same seat that I'd defiled with relish and mustard when my cardboard box tumbled to the floor, and there are few people back there, except for a skinny, dark-haired nymphet who insists on seducing a bug-eyed black man---and now at 6:21 there's a bump as if a new engine were introduced from the front---and various others who look at the seat, riding backward, across from me but don't think to take it. I see more frozen, dark herons on ponds right next to the train than I'd seen in Florida, the Amazon, or Costa Rica. Lots of ducks fly away from the front of the train, but lots also swim away, so I can see them from my seat. Many ponds on the right, covered with moss, and on the left are dozens of streams, or maybe just one big stream, and just after passing Albany proper we cross an enormous river, and I should have brought a NYS map so I could tell where we're going and how far we are from where we want to go. When the train is going to stop, I go back to my seat so I can type, but it's hot there again, and they didn't even have enough sense to park the train in the shade, which would be easy to find, since the sun is setting toward the tops of medium trees, and soon it'll be comfortable, I hope, in this seat to watch the aftermath of the sunset. Figure now to get into NYC after 9PM, and back to my apartment about 10PM, which will solve the problem of what to do before getting into a session of cock that I've been looking forward to for the past number of hours that I've been counting down, and figuring how to prolong the ecstasy, and how much I'll enjoy it, and how I'll have to do it again tomorrow night or the next night when I have Fred's tapes to copy, deciding I might as well find out how to attach the new GO, rather than try to figure out how to copy from the Panasonic to the GO or vice versa. And the paper to read and the mail to go through and this journal to print out and correct, and check to see if I DID print out the Costa Rica pages [I did], and probably even print out the SPACIFIC pages that I think I didn't, and get that pile sorted out. And now it's 6:28 and officially OVER the 15 minutes announced, though those who chose to get off the train to stretch had returned about five minutes ago. The woman in front has the longest inane soft-spoken conversation possible on her cell phone, and a guy behind is broadcasting to the world, and some woman in the diner talked sillily to someone who may have been expecting her early: "We're just leaving Saratoga Springs now." Can't WAIT for this to be over---maybe it'll go to a TEN-day vacation if it goes over to Tuesday? Perish the thought, now at 6:30 back to the puzzles I've been finishing, except the last in the stack doesn't seem to have its solution! Train starts up again at 6:33. All rivers and streams up here look HIGH! Town of Hudson at 6:55; guy next to me doesn't even look out WINDOWS and exchanges maybe three phrases with his brother. Sun sets behind far-west hilltops at 7. This must BE the Hudson? [It is.] Sun almost appears as hills level at 7:10. Endicott (?) [no, it's on the other side of the river] at 7:16. Poughkeepsie next at 7:33. At 7:35: "35 minutes to Croton." It's really too dark to see at 8PM. Fingernail moon setting, Venus just below it. To Croton on DOT of 8:10, "on time" only. Pass Graystone about 8:24, Yonkers at 8:29. "About 20 minutes to city." Pee and gaze at George Washington Bridge. Into tunnel about 8:40 about 135th Street. Bits of unidentifiable openings, like a peek of Javits Center? Stop at 8:50 "Two minutes from station; traffic in and out." Under Post Office! Stop at 8:55. Get token and subway-pass slip and to platform at 9:05. On #1 at 9:07. Home 9:35PM. Apartment looks fine. Note six telephone messages: 1) Denise: Grade 8 OK. 2) Village Playwrights call. 3) Mildred, Ilo Wednesday. 4) Carolyn, back, call her. 5) Ann F. asking about Pope, 6) Phone ad. Talk to Arnold 9:52-10:08. Dinner to 10:30, skim mail to 10:35, j/o to 11:15, TV about 9/11 to 12:40. Bed 12:50.

TUESDAY, 9/10/02: Pee 7:20, start j/o 8:05, cum 8:30, think to 9: figure 8 inches/millisecond in 9/11 mortality-rate CD. Set up TV. John 9:35-9:45. Carolyn LW 9:48. Mildred 9:49-10:15. Vicki 10:15 LW. Sherryl 10:16 LW. Shelley 10:17-10:45. Audience Extras to 10:50, getting one ticket to The Bacchae tomorrow night for $1 on 9/11 special. Eat breakfast. Bill P. calls. Carolyn 11:31-11:58. New York Times to 12:37, puzzles to 1:47, more to 2:25, then GOT to get to gym. Vicki calls. Lunch to 4:50, TV, make tuna and dinner to 8:25. TV to 8:55. Finish Times to 10:55. Bed 11:10.

WEDNESDAY, 9/11/02: Pee 5:20AM. Up at 7:18, shit to 7:30. Juno to 9:13, trying Archives and getting mail. Maybe play FreeCell. Spartacus calls to say Audience Extras has Metamorphosis for this afternoon. Hang up on him and call them and get two tickets, and Mildred is willing to come along. Quick dress and bus to Fred's to pick up three Fallen Angel videotapes before he leaves for Italy tomorrow, and subway (with free transfer from bus) to 50th St. to pick up tickets at 1:10 and go to Eighth Avenue Deli for roast beef on a bagel and a huge, tasty piece of pecan pie for $3.50 by itself, filling up. Back to meet Mildred and enjoy the play, especially the two WONDERFUL chests, and she even likes the last two parts. Then she wants to EAT! So we walk to Broadway and survey the scene and decide on Texas, Texas for my dinner, paying $11 for two lousy pork-chop dinners with good chicken soup, but then I spend $12 for a glass of white Zinfandel that is VERY white, and a good peach margarita in a glass boot. Stagger home at 5:30 to get a message from Mike K. at Bill Smith Studios with three science indexes, recommended by Abby W., and get out to Bacchae to find that it's all WOMEN. UGH! Back and watch TV and fall into bed.

THURSDAY, 9/12/02: Up late and fritter time away until Carolyn A. from 10:35-11:15, and I had to tell HER that the time was up, we were having so much fun talking. Buy groceries for first time, unpack most of the stuff, and get to the AlphaSmart to find I DID transcribe (and print) the Costa Rica trip, and enter and proofread the 15 CANCRUIS pages. Get a call from Barbara C. with a 490-page index due mid-October! GREAT! Then JEAN-PIERRE calls (on the third try, after I barked at the first two!), gives condolences on 9/11 anniversary, and says he WILL come to NYC for the month of October "and may stay forever," to which I counter, "You'll have to see how you like New York!" Phone Spartacus, who's happy, and Mildred, who says it'll be a disaster because I haven't made it clear to him that his stay is ALSO up to ME. I think he knows? Just finish the dream pages from trip, and the slide page, when I have to leave to meet Spartacus at 6:45 for Betrayal at Actor's Studio, where the best part is Estelle Parsons' introduction, and the play is really NOTHING, though the two guys were cute and rather played up a possible gay attraction. Leave him at 9:50 to get to db Bistro Moderne and have a FILLING escargot appetizer and a glass of Pinot Noir and the db burger, enormously filling but not worth returning for or even recommending: it's not REALLY a burger, but the pommes soufflés were great! Pay $72.29 (for a BURGER!) and home 11:30 to watch TV to 1 and STILL get to bed absolutely stuffed, worried about next C. blood-test results from trip.

FRIDAY, 9/13/02: Up about 8AM and watch Fallen Angels 1 & 2 from Fred, VERY anal, and cum about 9:30, start catching up with this, and C.'s index comes UPS (guy remarks on long delay; I say, "They used competition!") at 11. Finally go through mail, play lots of FreeCell to 2AM, and bed at 2:10AM.

SATURDAY, 9/14/02: Finish mail put-away, lie to Carolyn about Jean-Pierre, and print out 18 CANCRUIS pages and 49 SPACIFIC pages, throwing away too-dim printer ribbons. Still to view video, sort souvenirs, return stuff to Spartacus, and proofread the piles of typed journals. Finish this 2 WEEKS after trip-start, at 1:15PM, ready for the REST of my life.

Blue bag 14# out, 24# back; A&K bag 11# out, 8# back; total 25# out, 32# back.

Add expenses when I get them.

#1 Norwegian Sea from 42nd Street at 12:32PM
#2 going into the dock in Boston at 2:17PM
#3 downtown at the dock at 2:20PM
#4 Bar Harbor at 11:47
#5 shore path and ship at 11:57
#6 Tudor House on short
#7 Bush, growing by house, above
#8 Thunder Hole in Maine
#9&#10 Shore shots from above
#11 Panorama from above
#12 oil platform in Halifax
#13 boats and platform and other police ships at 12:52
#16 Halifax bridges from Citadel at 3:50
#17 2:35: red-roofed Hotel Tadussac
#18&19 Saguanay virgin in dusk
#20 ship under Frontenac from Ile D'Orleans
#21 first fall colors at 9:35
#22 ducks and view from Ile over St. Lawrence north
#23 more color at 9:37
#24 sugar shack
#25 Manoir Montmorency at 10:11
#26 raft model at 10:23
#28 other side of falls for stairs
#29 falls at 10:26
#30 and #31 views from across bridge at 10:37
#32 flowers at Manoir St. Castin
#33 view across lake at 11:20
#34 the Manoir from below
#35 across lake at 11:38

Roll #2:
#1 Notre Dame des Victoires at 1:59 in Petit Champlain Quarter
#2 Looking up Rue Sous-le-Fort
#3 and #4 of Chateau Frontenac at 2:06 from Dufferin Terrace
#7 chateau at 2:33
#8 at 3:16
#10 of the Chateau from ship at 5:27
#12 Place des Art at 12:11, all on St. Catherine
#13 Jacques Cartier Square at 12:23
#14 City Hall LIKE Paris, but not much, at 12:27
#15 top of Square at 12:28
#16 panorama
#17 Geodesic dome
#18 monument at 1:17
#19 of my room at 1:51
#21 roller coaster at 6:26
#22 BOD in subway ad at 7:44 at L'Allier underground
#23 view from Y window at 8:30
#24 Cathedral "St. Peters" at 1/3 size at 9:12
#25 leaving Montreal at 9:54

TRIP SUMMARY: SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 1: Car at noon, Norwegian Sun at 1PM to cabin 3148, porthole-less. Fred arrives 1:40, buffet lunch of cold cuts, beef stew, chicken thighs, and fruit and desserts. Sail 4PM after lifeboat drill. Watch ship leave NYC. Unpack, to Fred's travel-agent meeting at 7PM in Boomer's for hors d'ouvres and gin and tonics and pina colada, full. Dinner in Seven Seas with ten from group, fruit cocktail & lamb kebab &raspberry sherbet. Sleep12:10.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 2: Breakfast with group in Seven Seas, LeBistro at 9AM for travel meeting with rolls and orange juice, then lunch of fruit cocktail, chocolate and cherimoya soup, and into Boston 3PM for Aquarium and Imax "Ocean Men" at 6:15. Last on bus to ship at 7:02, LeBistro for dinner at 8 of snails and asparagus appetizers, salads, filets with foie gras, and chocolate fondue!
Watch "Good Advice" on TV, awful. Bed 11:40, Fred at Casino.
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 3: Big Apple for brunch at 11, cream cheese with smoked salmon, pancake and syrup, ham and grapefruit juice. End of awful "Kung Pow" on TV. Bar Harbor at noon, wet along Shore Walk, touristy town, bus at 12:35 around Acadia to Thunder Hole and Jordan Lake, and back to boat at 3:40. Watch "A Walk to Remember," and then "The Importance of Being Earnest." Dinner in Seven Seas of sturgeon and caviar, mushroom soup, champagne, lobster tails, and a sundae. To Cabaret for 10:30-11:20 show, too-crowded chocolate show, and bed 1:20AM.
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 4: Up at 9:32AM, JAMMED Big Apple breakfast 10:15-10:45 of bacon&ham&french toast&prunes&figs&juices. Off boat 1:45, onto Free Rides Everywhere Downtown (FRED) to 2:20, Hop-On-Hop-Off 2:35 to Public Gardens and Maritime Museum of the Atlantic for remnants of the Halifax Explosion of 1917 and the Titanic sinking in 1912. To ship 6:15, to Four Seasons for President's Dinner of cheese crepes, consomme, salad, beef tenderloin, and a heavenly hot fudge sundae. Return to Halifax for sick guy. Watch "Domestic Disturbance" with Travolta, and to Rock and Roll Revue in Cabaret 10:30-11:10 and bed at 12:20AM.
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 5: "Dinner Rush" bit before bed. Watch start of "Saving Grace" and leave 9:10 for Seven Seas breakfast of frittata, "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" 12-1:30 on Fred's recommendation (ugh!), and to Seven Seas for prosciutto&melon, beef broth, &Cuban sandwich and chocolate sundae. Work puzzles to 6:05, on deck for windy, wet non-sunset, "Showtime" end awful, "Someone Like You" 8-8:45 with Hugh Jackman and Greg Kinnear, and LeBistro's asparagus, onion soup, tuna salad, Bearnaise filet, sundae. To Stardust Lounge 10:30 for Liar's Club, which my team 8 wins with my "hemipyginic", and get to bed 12:05AM.
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 6: Wake 7:30, breakfast:ham&blue cheese omelet7:40-8:20, watch passing St. Lawrence banks,Oscar's 9:30 &win trivia contest with my team, &watch "Zoolander." Big Apple lunch of pork chop, fish, fruit, &iced tea. Into Saguenay River 2:30 for a tiny minke whale,many photos to 5:30&see whale slide show.Watch "The Affair of the Necklace", Seven Seas for smoked quenelles, cream of apple& cinnamon soup,salad,steak&shrimp,cheese,&chocolate sauce over pecan ice cream. 9:30 Cabaret for Retro-Active show, watch CNN from 10:15-11:45, then go to bed.
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 7: Breakfast&bus for Ile D'Orleans, Sugar Shack, Montmorency Falls, Lake Beauport and Manoir St. Castin to 12:10. Lunch in Seven Seas: cream of papaya, fruit&cottage cheese&banana bread&ice cream sundae. To Quebec 2PM, funicular to Citadel stairs, walk side streets, to Dufferin Terrace for drinks in Chateau Frontenac lounge. To ship 5:25, watch sunset to 7:15, to Four Seasons for three-berry compote, split pea soup, fettucini with mushrooms, pork chop, champagne&sundae.To9:30 Cabaret for comic,singer,&magician til 11:10.Bed12:29AM.
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 8: Wake at 7:20AM, watch end of "Snow Dogs," Four Seasons breakfast with two eggs over easy and three cups of hot chocolate, finish packing, watch "Jurassic Park 3" climax, and get off ship 10:35. Taxi to YMCA and walk to YWCA for room, 1.5 hour Montreal bus tour, unpack a bit, leave for LaRonde at 2:30, ride Monster, eat lunch, Volcanozor show, Cobra, Vampire, and to ferris wheel for photos and leave 7PM, exhausted to room at 8 and bed 10:25.

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 9: Up 7AM, buy train ticket, breakfast in YWCA, leave at 9 and train leaves 9:50, through Ontario and NYState to lunch of cheeseburger, and NYC at 9PM, home at 9:35, check phone messages, talk to Arnold, dinner, bed 12:50AM.