Thursday, May 19, 2011

THE Hill - The centre from which Canada revolves

[Photo: A rodent - marmot?]
I am in Ottawa for a few days, so I tried to make the most of it. By coincidence the city had just installed Bixi's - bicycles for rent. When hoofing it back to the hotel I came across them and was inspired to rent one. $5 for 24hrs. A cheap way to circle round THE hill. I immediately headed across the river to the Canadian Museum of Civilization (scouting the route for a visit there, with the curator who specializes in Coast Salish textiles, the next day - more on this later), along the river bank, back across the river, along THE Hill, up along the locks and parked the bike back in its stall. Interestingly, I saw more wildlife (of the animal variety) than I expected. First ducks in the locks (not sure how they get out since they need a flight path of a certain length and those locks look short), some sort of a rodent (parliament must be inundated with them), a family of Canadian (well, this IS the capital) Geese and a bloody big fish that surprised many passer-bys.
The Bixi bike was great fun. Since you can park it in any Bixi location, I ended up picking up another one the next morning (remember, $5 for 24hrs!) for my visit to the Canadian Museum of Civilization, parking it there, and picked up another one for the return trip.
I had time for a visit to the National archives where I came across a monument with a thought provoking quote which is a good way to end this posting:

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