Our Trip to Ottawa


Our visit to Ottawa turned out to be more exciting than planned.

Earlier this afternoon, while we were waiting to pay for lunch at the Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, Quebec, Vivian, who had been bright and cheerful just minutes before, fainted. One moment she was there, the next she was on the floor. She recovered fairly quickly afterward, but she was still listless, and the paramedics advised that a precautionary trip to the hospital might be in order.

I have to say that I appreciated how attentive and compassionate the security people were as they hovered over Vivian and made sure she was all right. The same goes for the paramedics, who gave us good instructions on symptoms to be aware of and what to watch for. Of course, once we got to the emergency room, the same thing that has happened in emergency rooms for years past happened today: Vivian got better after waiting a few hours. In fact, by the late evening, she was bored and hungry and quite her old self again. So we took her home.

I am going to follow up with the family doctor when we get back to Kitchener. One symptom I noted after Vivian recovered from her faint is that she said that the light hurt her eyes. That strikes me as a possible migraine, which I used to suffer from during my early teens. And they can set in pretty quickly, can’t they?

The rest of the trip has been simply wonderful, even this morning at the Museum of Civilization. Yesterday, we visited Parliament Hill and took the full tour. We even went through security and sat in on the House of Commons in their public viewing gallery, though it was lunchtime and none of the leaders were there. We then went to the Byward Market and had poutine and shopped till we dropped. The day before that was a full day at the Museum of Nature.

There is much in Ottawa that we have not seen. We arrived too early for the tulips. But it’s a mark of a great city to know that you can’t see everything in one go. We’ll be back. And Ottawa will be waiting.

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