Portage La Prairie, St. John’s
To the Edge of the World and Back
In 2010, when the Juno Awards were in St. John’s Newfoundland, I drove straight through from Winnipeg to Montreal in forty-eight hours straight without stopping for rest. I allowed just gas stops and I did not speed, nor break other laws of the road. While going through Toronto on the 401, It was raining and I was not sure of where I was going. It was night and I was in one of the center lanes going slower than the speed limit. I looked up just in time to see two semis coming for me, one on each side. They were going faster then me and had me trapped in a tunnel. They were both throwing up road water and it was like going through a waterfall for about 30-40 seconds of time. I was SHIT SCARED but white-knuckled it through that incident and stayed in my lane by some miracle’s intervention.
I prayed that I didn’t happen again and thanked what passed as God for getting me through. In Montreal I stayed at the Holiday Inn near the airport and slept for two whole days. I remember the buffet in the restaurant was overrun by a pack of starved school kids who had voided the food stations of all sustenance. The manager of the restaurant apologized and provided me with a certificate for 10% off next time I ate there. That never did happen as I moved on that morning.
I eventually made the ferry dock in North Sydney and crossed the ocean to Port aux Basques, Newfoundland. Just off the ferry I passed a man walking who reminded me of an old acquaintance from ENMAX. I have since come to believe that he was St. Michael from Revelation in the bible. I didn’t stop because I was worried about getting into an accident later on in the trip. I attempted to drive straight through to St. John’s from there. At one point in the dark of night I was almost run off the road by a speeding driver. Luckily there was an exit that I could take.
Too bad there was another oncoming car that wanted to turn into my lane just off the exit I took. I narrowly avoided another accident and thanked my lucky stars that I hadn’t picked up St Michael, if it had been him, because I thought at the speed, I was travelling the extra weight of a passenger would have sent me careening into the ditch. I eventually got back on track and found St. John’s. I checked into the Holiday Inn and printed out two books of poetry that I had written, Man’s Inspiration Volume I, and Fucked Up ASCII, a longer book.
The next day I went to the post office and bought envelopes for the return letters but forgot to buy stamps for them. After that I went to Breakwater Books on the Pier and hand-delivered the print copies of the books to a representative of the company. I was told that it was unorthodox to do so, but they took them anyway.
With retrospect I think I had to travel to Newfoundland to quell the up-and-coming Hurricane that would hit the coast and just told myself to venture there so I could break off some of it and bring it back to Manitoba so Newfoundland wouldn’t be so hard hit. Short of the story is I went back to the Holiday Inn, checked out and phoned home. I borrowed $400 for gas and went home. I had only been on the Rock for a 24hr period. The drive home was like the drive there and I barely stopped besides for gas. I was back in Manitoba before Easter Long Weekend and living once again in Bowes Trailer Court.