Jeanne surrounded by her many fans!

First Rule:

“Do not believe everything you read on the internet.”

Minto’s advertising was likely true…. thirty years ago.

The temperatures were hot (over 90) and the air very humid when we arrived in Ottawa. From the beautiful photos and glowing descriptions given to us over the Internet, we were looking forward to getting settled into our short-term furnished apartment. We’d been told we’d have air conditioning, high speed Internet, and a fully equipped kitchen. But when we walked into our 7th floor apartment with no drapes, flimsy venetian blinds, and large windows facing the west, we knew we were in trouble. The place was like an oven. The “air conditioning” they had promised turned out to be a very small wall unit that blocked the doorway leading out to the balcony. It was obvious it wouldn’t be able to cool down our bedrooms, kitchen, and bathrooms because it was barely making a difference in the main room. We knew we’d be pretty uncomfortable if we didn’t act fast.  

A quick trip to Canadian Tire netted us two large and very noisy fans to move around the apartment wherever needed. They stirred the air and also blocked out the street noise. To our surprise, we found we had landed in a building that was now being used as a student dormitory for Algonquin College (just down the street). Not only was the air conditioning a disappointment, but we also had no working telephone (and no cell phones that we could use), no Internet access, a broken coffee pot. Clearly, the place needed work and it was just one day away from the weekend. Tony sprang into action and soon we had most of the kinks worked out. The management even promised to reimburse us the cost of the fans. We could live with the big hole in the kitchen linoleum, the rock-hard beds, and the dated and mismatched living room furniture. Our month-long stay in the Ottawa valley had begun!

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