Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Downtown Adventure

On Tuesday, I was supposed to go downtown. Instead, I chatted online with a friend all day. It was the right choice. But Tuesday night, I heard the call for snow, and lots of it. Wednesday was primed to be a Downtown Adventure!

My downfall was waking up too late. After lunch [I needed to eat my own food and not be spending like a wild man on lunch at a fast food joint] I called a cab at 12:15. No way in hell I was walking 90 minutes in that snowstorm. Based on the price, I'd decide whether or not I cab or walk home. The taxi came in just 5 minutes. A record on any day, let alone a snow storming bus strike day!

As we drove by a woman waving to also be picked up, the driver told me about some ridiculous story about how one time 15 years ago, he picked up some woman one stormy night while he had a gay guy in the car. The woman pressed the guy on where he was going until she found out it was a gay club. As all good Italian Catholics would, she started freaking out and swearing like a sailor. But she stayed in the cab. LOL I'm not sure if the driver could tell I am gay or not, but it was a bizarre story to tell regardless. But he was nice. The drive cost 14 bucks. I assumed it would be 20+. I tipped well LOL.

I went into Tabaret Hall and instantly found myself in the line to get my OSAP form filled out. Over the course of the next hour, I trudged slowly down the hallway, txting people and giving me a chance to check out the series of paintings ["High Tea" by Manon Elder] of successful Canadian women and their tea cups. My favourites were of Mary Walsh pouring her tea into her purse, and the one below of Julie Payette, which is titled "There are no cups in space". Really makes you think! Also, I love how you don't see who the people actually are. No heads. Just chests and cups.

At about 1:40, I reached the Former Chapel, which is probably the most beautiful room on campus. It was a sea of chairs. I got my number and sat down. I was just 2 away from being called. What?

I went to see the lady, forked over three pieces of ID and was 3rd in the mini line in order to get my form filled out. I showed the girl my 3 pieces of ID [didn't they just see those?] and then signed a piece of paper once, and an electronic screen once. Then I was sent to see a lady. The Lady gave me the number B380. I sat down. The screen popped up in front of me... B272. This was going to take a while.

Across from me was a girl. To her left, her male friend kept staring at me. I stared back. To the girl's right, there was an empty chair, and then a guy on a laptop. He had the same bag as me. We both used our feet to try to hide the pattern on the front that would be a dead giveaway that they're the same. But the boy and girl knew. Damn them!

I sat a few more minutes, and wrote my banking information on my form. That would save me 9-10 seconds later on. A girl came and sat on my right, and her friend sat beside her. They were chatting away. Chat chat chat. A real Chatty Cathy situation. But I knew her voice. 40,000 students, and I know the voice sitting beside me? But I couldn't just look right at her... the seats were so close together. Then, while discussing her banking information, she told her friend "I don't know my bank's address, I just know it's on Raglan St." Huzzah! Main St. Downtwon Renfrew. Home Sweet Home. I glanced at the name on top of her OSAP form. Jen and I chatted for a good 40 minutes. She knew it was me but didn't want to say anything in case I didn't recognize her HAHA.

At 2:58 I was finally called to desk 10. The guy at desk 14 intercepted me. I remembered him from September. Did he remember me? I signed the form 5 more times [its quite the form] and then he took the top copy, gave me the bottom two copies, and told me that in 7-10 days [including weekends!] I'd have my money. Day 10 is a Saturday, so I assume it will be 7-9 days. Sweet!

That part took 4 minutes. Thank God I waited 2 hours for that!

I walked down to Rideau St. I decided that I would cab home, since the weather was just plain awful. There were no random cabs on the street, so I walked down a few blocks to the taxi pickup/dropoff zone at Rideau Center. There was a line. I took a number. I was 8th. LOL Someone left. Then two taxis came. I was now 5th. Then someone left and a taxi came. Then someone left. I was 2nd in line. But fuck that shit... a new line started to form 50 feet up the street. That is NOT the taxi area. A taxi came and picked up three girls there. The guy behind me in line stopped the cab when it got to us and yelled at him.

After standing on the street for 50 minutes waiting for a cab, a van taxi started heading our way. Two people ran into the street at the new line to try to get it, but it passed them and came to the real line. The two guys behind me and the guy in front of me were all headed East, so we joined up and the four of us we on our way. I wondered how the payment would all work out. The first guy paid 15 bucks. The next guy paid 20. Me and the other guy got off at Montreal @ St. Laurent, and paid 10 each. Sweet! I trudged up the hill in the snow, and at 4:50, I was home.

4.5 hours just to fill out a piece of paper.

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