I just returned from a week in Montréal. This was an opportunity to visit (the tail end of) the Jazz Festival, and to reconnect with my friend, co-author, and former office-mate.
Unfortunately, getting there turned into a nightmare. We argued about whether to go by car, train, or plane, but we ultimately found a reasonable fare on Priceline, so we flew. It was US Airways, with a longish layover in Philadelphia. Shortly after landing at PHL, we learned that our Montréal flight was canceled, due to traffic congestion. So we rerouted through Boston. But then one leg or the other of that trip was delayed. And at the airport – as in the city itself – restaurants start closing at 8:00.
Anyway, here's the Reader's Digest condensed version: we left home at 10 in the morning, and got to my friend's house in Montréal at 1:00 the next morning. By my reckoning, we could have driven there and back in that time.
Coming home was slightly better, although there was another moment of panic at PHL when the monitor listed our flight to LGA as delayed until half past midnight. It turned out to be a fluke. Still, we left my friend's house at 3 in the afternoon and got home at 1 in the morning.
Sad, but true: the overhead of getting to/from the airport and the risk of being delayed or canceled are too high to justify flying anywhere within a 10 hour drive. (Non-stop flights minimize the risk, of course.)
Just as I started to write this post, iTunes shuffled its way onto Glenn Gould playing Partita #6 in E minor. So I chose a suitably Canadian (though not specifically Québécois) title for this post.
More on the trip later.