toronto. literally the smallest apartment ever we gained full reign over, given the key to this domicile the night before, under the mat. complete strangers this man let sleep in his bathroom sized efficiency hub of an apartment. apparently, we came upon toronto in the middle of a trash strike, and yet the streets remained cleaner than our old neighborhood in chicago will ever be. it was disconcerting seeing trash overflowing onto the street and napkins and wrappers being whipped about by the breeze, though, considering my exaulted view of the true north (strong and free) stemming mainly from the amazing ability of its citizens to place trash in a trash can. our mysterious benefactor became less so after a breakfast and city stroll that placed us well behind schedule for getting to montreal on time. slowly, everything to read, had to be read in french. we found our way through the rues and arrived not on time at all. montreal, and quebec in general, the french texas of the north. seperatists in the truest sense. i'm thankful for the impressive linguistic acrobatics of the people we stayed with. even the stop signs were in french...our poor time management, due both to the enchanting quality of montreal
as well as my unrelenting search for "the big o"
led to a very pretty turned terrifying drive through vermont/new hampshire/maine.
our late departure ensured we hit new hampshire in the dark. the very dark. the dark in which i almost hit a baby black bear, a few deer and some foxes. cresting every hill, there would seem to be an animal in the middle of the road, but it would almost always turn out to be just a very dark shadow. like mirages, but night mirages. instead of projecting pools of water on the horizon, the night mirages were projecting animals i would surely kill. we arrived in bar harbor, maine (on the same island as acadia naitonal park) at two a.m. and were met with a large pillar of smoke as we entered the home in whose couch we would surf for the next two nights. dreads, so much grateful dead....none of this disturbed the sound sleep we soon enjoyed.